December 14, 2008

Interview with Funcom's CEO Trond Arne Aas

We've seen a number of interviews with the game director of Age of Conan as well as other members of the AoC dev team. However this time GamesIndustry.biz have done an exclusive interview with the big man himself: Trond Arne Aas, the CEO of Funcom. Even though they talk about other subjects as well, the main topic is still Age of Conan since it's Funcom's flagship MMORPG. Here are some facts from the interview that I found interesting:

  • Funcom are not doing any major changes to their US division; the recent layoffs were made primarily in Quality Assurance and Customer Service teams. As of now, there are no plans to do similar cutbacks in Europe.
  • The main priorities for Funcom are: free updates for Age of Conan throughout 2009; bringing fully localised versions of AoC to Russian, Polish and later Korean markets; development of their new The Secret World MMORPG as well as a number of casual and/or browser-based MMO projects.
  • The company already has a separate team working on the upcoming Age of Conan expansion and it will be increased in size starting from January 2009.
  • Funcom is still working on an Xbox 360 version of Age of Conan, but they do not commit to any deadlines yet.
  • Mr. Trond Arne Aas mentioned "positive trends" in terms of subscriptions thanks to Funcom's latest initiatives, although he did not disclose the exact subscriber numbers, only talking about the 400,000 they had back in August.
  • The Secret World will be based on the same DreamWorld engine that Age of Conan uses (but you probably already knew that as it was announced months ago). Hopefully it won't be as slow and buggy at the launch as Age of Conan was.
Head to GamesIndustry.biz to read Matt Martin's whole interview with Trond Arne Aas.

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