If you say “Q-Games”, the first things that come to mind are probably Nintendo and Sony. (Oh, and there’s that other Japan-based developer with a similar name.) But you think consoles. You don’t think computers. Consoles. That could change.
“We want to be recognised as independent and as a developer that does many different things,” Dylan Cuthbert, Q-Games founder, tells Kotaku.
The studio definitely does a wide array of things — from making games to music as well as working on tech demos and interfaces. However, Q-Games is closely associated with fellow Kyoto game maker Nintendo as well as Sony.
Makes sense. There’s a long history between Cuthbert and both companies. The close working relationship does make sense.
PixelJunk producer James Mielke adds that Q-Games is just not seen as an indie dev — and there is a notion that Q-Games is simply an arm of those companies, instead of an independent game developer, self-financing its own projects.
It would be easy to make that mistake as the studio’s titles either end up on Sony or Nintendo platforms. Earlier this year, though, Q-Games did release a tweaked and tuned version of PixelJunk Eden on PC. Cuthbert is quick to point out that this was “experimentation”.
“We are interested in Steam,” Cuthbert says about Valve’s PC platform. Q-Games is currently working on four projects for unspecified platforms.
But Cuthbert sounds less interested in porting. If given the choice between porting something over to PC and doing something totally new, Cuthbert mentioned how he’d prefer to do something new for PC. Says Cuthbert, “It would have to be original.”
So that doesn’t necessarily mean more PixelJunk games won’t end up on Steam, but it sounds like Cuthbert would rather make a brand new title for PC gamers. And that sounds like a good thing. By creating new titles, Q-Games can hopefully sidestep something that plagues so many developers: driving a brand into the ground.
Q-Games isn’t stopping at PC; the studio is also looking into iOS games, creating mock-ups, which Cuthbert once again calls “experimenting”. The goal, he says, is to see how the platform works and test out development on it. “We’ve always done this, though,” Cuthbert added.
During this current generation, Q-Games has churned out some of the most polished — and interesting — games for home consoles and handhelds. From the sound of it, the PC could be next.