Just weeks after announcing the formation of a new group designed to oversee the firm’s product quality, Foundation 9 Entertainment has unveiled its first strategy to live up to its promise: the Total Quality Initiative.
Spearheaded by the company’s chief creative officer, Richard Hare, the strategy pledges that the company will "consistently make games of the highest achievable standards at all of its studios, as well as adding a new level of service to its publishers".
"We’re already capable of making great games," said Hare.
"This initiative will add a new level of support to our studios, enabling them to reach even higher quality targets, while providing our publishers with service they can’t get from any other independent developer."
F9E developed over 60 titles in 2007 for ‘nearly every major publisher’, and the firm’s studios – Backbone, Sumo Digital, The Collective, Digital Eclipse, Shiny, Amaze, Pipeworks, Circle of Confusion and Imagine Engine – are currently at work on more than 20 projects.
The initiative includes the expansion of a centralised consumer testing and QA department, a new framework for internal product reviews and knowledge-sharing forums between studios in order to establish best practices across the organisation.
Plus, the initiative also includes the implementation of a formalized system for the evaluation and creative development of original game concepts – something that Foundation 9, which predominantly specialises in work for hire projects, obviously feels it lacks.
"Our focus, first and foremost, will be ensuring the games we make for our publishers are top-notch," said Hare. "But we also want to foster creative experimentation and self-expression in our talented employees by giving them a venue to pitch and develop their ideas."