New UK management team puts Codemasters in pole position

Better trade relations and a line-up of key titles that will excite retail are being promised by the new UK management team leading Codemasters in 2009.

The publisher is building up to one of its most prolific years ever, with open world racer FUEL arriving in May, Operation Flashpoint 2 hitting in the summer followed by the return of Colin McRae DIRT – which sees the series’ biggest push ever, across all formats.

Those titles are joined by new games in the Overlord series, plus sci-fi MMO Jumpgate. Further down the line in ‘09 is the firm’s first Formula One game – plus more, unannounced titles.

Now UK GM Jeremy Wigmore and VP of marketing Alex Bertie are keen to remind retail about the inherent quality of Codemasters’ games, which will make the firm’s releases sure-fire sellers.

Codemasters had lacked a regular communication with retail, but that is changing now,” Wigmore, who joined Codemasters from Atari late last year, told MCV.

The one thing that everyone knows about Codemasters is the quality of its games. That’s never been in doubt. And the people who actually sell the games, the people on the shopfloor at the frontline of our business, are passionate about games – about good games. So the key thing for us to do is make them our evangelists, have them on side and talking about our titles.

When someone walks into a retailer and asks for help, I want that shop to recommend our games. The quality of our products is exceptionally high – so we’re planning to emphasise that fact.”

Bertie added: Because we are not just a British publisher, but also a developer with three great internal studios and relationships with key developers in Europe, a lot of the sensitivities we have are relevant for this market.

That makes us much more commercially relevant in this market than some of our competitors, who tend to approach things from either a very Japanese or North American point of view with their products or strategy.

I’d say the unique Brit and European flavour that our games have gives us a competitive edge over a lot of other publisher line-ups.”

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