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News Business Game Dev Guerrilla Games Hermen Hulst is PlayStation new head of Worldwide Studios.

IbizaPocholo

NeoGAFs Kent Brockman
Dec 1, 2014
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ibiza
PlayStation has named Guerrilla Games managing director and co-founder Hermen Hulst as its new head of Worldwide Studios.

He starts the role immediately and will manage all of Sony's game development across its 14 internal studios.

Meanwhile, Worldwide Studios president Shuhei Yoshida will leave his current role to lead a new initiative that will look after and nurture external, smaller independent studios.

The changes are part of Sony Interactive Entertainment's restructuring ahead of the launch of PS5. It also comes a month after the departure of Worldwide Studios Chairman Shawn Layden.

Speaking to GamesIndustry.biz, PlayStation CEO and president Jim Ryan said that Hulst's appointment will prove Sony is very much thinking globally as it moves into the next generation.

Hermen Hulst

"Hermen is a European who will be taking one of the major offices at PlayStation," he said. "I think everybody in Europe should be thrilled and happy and proud that that is happening."

He continued in a statement: "Hermen is one of the most effective and well-respected leaders in the video game industry. He is a passionate advocate for the teams he leads and understands how to empower creative talent to build great experiences. I have no doubt Hermen can lead our teams to deliver compelling and diverse experiences at a steady cadence."

Guerrilla is best known for the Killzone series and Horizon: Zero Dawn, and most recently worked with Kojima Productions on Death Stranding. In Hulst's place, Angie Smets, Jan-Bart van Beek and Michiel van der Leeuw will take over as joint studio heads at Guerrilla.

Hulst said: "I have worked closely with PlayStation and the entire Worldwide Studios family since 2001,and I have the utmost respect and admiration for the creative talent and ambitious ideas within the network of studios across the US, Europe, and Japan."

Yoshida's new position is part of a new initiative "celebrating external developers that are creating new and unexpected experiences." He will report directly to Jim Ryan.

Shuhei Yoshida

"Everybody knows just how passionate Shu is about independent games -- they are lifeblood of the industry, making our content portfolio so special for our gamers," Ryan said. "These wildly creative experiences deserve focus, and a champion like Shu at PlayStation who will ensure the entire SIE organization works together to better engage with independent developers through a culture of supporting and celebrating their contributions to PlayStation platforms."

The news will come as promising reading to the independent gaming community. Over the past 12 months, some indie studios have expressed concern to GamesIndustry.biz that PlayStation seems to be scaling back its support for smaller developers. However, Ryan insists that indies have always remained important to the platform holder.

"I get this a lot," he said. "We feel that it's not a question of us coming back to the indies, because we feel like we've never left. I would just point to the amount of engagement that PlayStation has made with that community over the course of the last three to five years in the VR space. People tend to forget about this, but the amount of indie engagement with VR is actually really very significant. We are very active with them, we've been engaged with human resource, we've been very financially supportive, we've been sharing experiences as people start to learn about what makes a great VR experience.

"I think we've always been there with indies, and when they were fascinated and engaged with virtual reality, that's when we pivoted our engagement with them. So our work with the indie community has remained at the levels that it was during the early days of PS4."
 
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DJTaurusGR

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Apr 9, 2012
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Hold your horses. From unknown source:

I met Hulst at E3 in 2011 when Guerilla was promoting Killzone 3 and '3D' for gaming was trying to be a thing. The demo I got to play was based around some sort of sea-platform. The 3D looked bad, the fact they had to render twice as many frames meant the resolution took a huge hit and it looked awful. I asked Hulst whether he felt too big a compromise was being made with the game's fidelity and he clammed up, dropped eye contact and answered subsequent questions dismissively in one or two words.

Back in the UK, when it came to writing up a preview of Killzone 3, I shared my thoughts about the game with our readers, about 3D and about compromise. Guerilla contacted my office to demand the preview was taken down and/or rewritten, despite not being able to cite anything that was factually incorrect. We didn't, of course, but it left a bitter taste. That is the only memory or feeling I have about Hulst now. You're welcome.
 
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MDSLKTR

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This is great for many reasons. One is that he comes from a fps background and that's a genre that Sony needs to go back to badly, second is that he's European and there needs to be a new wave of the golden age of PS euro titles (please reopen Guerilla Cambridge and Evolution, hell resuscitate Psygnosis while you're at it) and lastly he's best buddies with Kojima :messenger_ok:
 

Hendrick's

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Jan 7, 2014
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Why do they keep changing the title?

Chairman, Director, President...is this so they can make it look like no one is being replaced?
 

Boss Mog

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Dec 12, 2013
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Shu did a great job this gen so I don't see why he's leaving unless it was his choice, perhaps to lighten his workload, because as others have said, it does seems like somewhat of a demotion to be working with indie devs.
 

psygn0sis

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Aug 13, 2019
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This is great for many reasons. One is that he comes from a fps background and that's a genre that Sony needs to go back to badly, second is that he's European and there needs to be a new wave of the golden age of PS euro titles (please reopen Guerilla Cambridge and Evolution, hell resuscitate Psygnosis while you're at it) and lastly he's best buddies with Kojima :messenger_ok:
A man can dream <3
 

voady

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Oct 30, 2009
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wow...I am actually incredibly surprised and support this wildly at the same time. He will lead PS5 into absolute pinnacle of gaming perfection. He has all he needs now.
 

Monsterkillah

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Aug 12, 2018
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Already seen him in interview and hzd documentary

This guy is amazing👍

Goodluck on your new position
 
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ThaMonkeyClaw

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Apr 4, 2018
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This took me by surprise as well, but having Mark Cerny as the lead architect of the PS5 and now having Hermen being the head of Sony Worldwide Studios, this will be a very developer focused generation which will be nice! It will be interested to see what Sony does this generation!
 
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DeepEnigma

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Dec 3, 2013
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Word!

Shu, if you're reading this, holla at Japan Studio and From for some BB2, and the next Fumito Ueda game. We already know you visited Housemarque a few months ago, so probably another PS5 launch hotness like Resogun?
 
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Fbh

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Dec 6, 2013
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Could be good, Guerilla definitely had an amazing gen. Went from a rather average studio to making one of the best Ps4 exclusives and an awesome engine.

Shu looking into smaller studios could be interesting too. Hopefully he manages to get some japanese devs on board.
 
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vkbest

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Jan 23, 2017
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Its pretty pathetic Sony only remember Indies when new generation release. Anyway, I can't understand Sony on last years.
 
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McRazzle

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There’s definitely something going on behind the scenes at PlayStation. Recent departures include PlayStation boss Andrew House, SIE Worldwide Studios chairman Shawn Layden, and head of second-party games Gio Corsi, and now we have perhaps the most surprising shakeup yet – longtime Sony Interactive Entertainment Worldwide Studios President Shuhei Yoshida is stepping down. Yoshida held his position since 2008 and has been a key part of the PlayStation team since it’s inception in the early 90s. A large portion of PlayStation’s biggest franchises were created under Yoshida’s watchful eye.
Yoshida will be replaced in his role by Guerrilla Games (Horizon Zero Dawn) co-founder Hermen Hulst.

Shuhei Yoshida won’t be leaving Sony, he’ll instead be working with indie developers as part of a “new company initiative.” Sony has fallen somewhat behind in recent years when it comes to securing indie exclusives, so Yoshida will still be doing important work, but there’s no doubt this is a demotion.

full article here:
 

Bryank75

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Jan 12, 2018
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May signal that they will expand the European group of studios... several good targets there with Remedy, CDPR and Kojima Studios being so close to Guerilla..... excited to see what happens next!
 

FranXico

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Dec 7, 2010
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May signal that they will expand the European group of studios... several good targets there with Remedy, CDPR and Kojima Studios being so close to Guerilla..... excited to see what happens next!
Don't forget Housemarque.
 
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