Netflix’s commitment to expanding its small gaming section appears to be far more long-term than anyone could have predicted. So far, Netflix’s game catalog has only included mobile titles, but there are whispers in the rumor mill that it is about to expand significantly — and there’s even a recruitment ad to prove it. Will Netflix achieve the unthinkable and expand its brand beyond binge-worthy shows and movies?
Netflix is certainly under pressure from its competitors, and its subscription numbers are not as impressive as they once were. According to TechCrunch, Netflix had its largest quarterly loss in its history in the second quarter of 2022. With competitors like HBO Max, Disney+, Hulu, and many more, it’s no surprise that people can now pick among many streaming services, which can have a noteworthy impact on Netflix’s subscription numbers.
To address these issues, Netflix appears to be attempting to do more than simply license and film an increasing number of movies and shows. The company updates its mobile game catalog regularly, adding new titles that are available as part of a regular Netflix subscription. It is also considering streaming live sporting events. It may now attempt to pique the interest of gamers by developing its own AAA title.
Netflix’s plans are unknown, but they aren’t exactly hidden either. The company advertised a job opening on its official website for a game director to work at its own Los Angeles-based game studio. Netflix has high expectations for the ideal candidate, but it also has exciting plans in the works. It will task the new hire with helping Netflix “forge the game direction and creative vision on a brand-new AAA PC game,” according to the job description. AAA games are typically high-end titles aimed at ardent gamers; examples include “Cyberpunk 2077” and “God of War Ragnarök.”
Netflix is looking for an art director, technical director, live service analyst, and lead engineer besides a game director. Once hired, the new Netflix employees will most likely report to Chacko Sonny, a former Activision Blizzard employee who now works for Netflix. They hacked Sonny because Netflix’s vice president of gaming, Mike Verdu, revealed during TechCrunch Disrupt that the company is vastly expanding its gaming section. Sonny previously worked as an executive producer on Blizzard Entertainment’s “Overwatch,” which was a huge success. Building a team around Sonny suggests that Netflix’s new release may aim for the big leagues.
In terms of the actual game, Netflix has been tight-lipped about the specifics. However, the job description mentions “experience with FPs and/or third-person shooter games,” which suggests that we might see something similar to “Overwatch,” but in the third person. Will Netflix be able to gain new subscribers because of the release of this new title? It remains to be seen, but it is an intriguing development.