Guerrilla’s Hermen Hulst has been appointed Sony’s new head of worldwide studios (WWS).
In a press release from the company, Sony said Hulst’s promotion is “effective immediately” and sees him “manage and lead all game development across the 14 studios that form Worldwide Studios”.
Consequently, Sony also confirmed former president WWS, Shuhei Yoshida, will leave his position to head up a “newly formed initiative that will focus on nurturing external independent creators”.
This new initiative will focus on “celebrating external developers that are creating new and unexpected experiences for the gaming community”, and sees Yoshida report directly to CEO Jim Ryan.
“I am thrilled to announce Shu Yoshida as head of this new initiative,” Ryan said via a press statement. “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. 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.”
Hulst, who co-founded Amsterdam-based Guerrilla and most recently served as managing director, is no stranger to Sony. The studio is best known for its Sony-exclusive Killzone franchise and Horizon Zero Dawn, as well as the development of Decima, its proprietary game engine launched in 2013.
Angie Smets, Jan-Bart van Beek and Michiel van der Leeuw will take over Hulst’s duties at Guerrilla as joint studio heads.
“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,” said Hulst, reflecting upon his appointment. “I am beyond excited to have the opportunity now to lead such an inspired and talented team whose singular mission is to build amazing games for PlayStation fans.”
“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,” added Jim Ryan, president and CEO of Sony Interactive Entertainment. “Worldwide Studios is a critical part of the future success of the company, and we must deliver on the promise we have made to gamers to create imaginative and exciting content that is truly unique to PlayStation. I have no doubt Hermen can lead our teams to deliver compelling and diverse experiences at a steady cadence.”