What happens when former employees from two of the biggest free-to-play companies strike out on their own to make a new game company? The answer is, hopefully, “make great games,” but it will probably be a while before we find out if that’s the case with Ganymede Games, whose core consists of veterans from Wargaming and Riot Games, as well as Blizzard and id Software.
Ganymede’s co-founders are Jerry Prochazka and Lynn Stetson. Prochazka was the chief people officer at Wargaming for three years and followed up with a three-year stint at Riot, while Stetson was head of user experience and senior product leader at Riot for four years before moving on to become head of global user experience at Wargaming from 2017 to 2018. According to GamesIndustry, the team also includes another ex-Wargaming/Riot-er in Rob Thompson, who will “focus on talent and publishing for the new studio.”
The company is stationed in New Mexico, which is a seemingly unusual spot for a game company, but, as Prochazka explained to Variety, it’s to take advantage of the state’s Refundable Film Production Tax Credit, as well as recruitment opportunities from nearby New Mexico State University, New Mexico Tech, the Dona Ana Community College.
While there’s no firm word on what kinds of game(s) Ganymede will create, a quote from Prochazka offers at least some kind of insight as to what his company will create:
“We want to make games that are easy to get into, and easy to get out of. We have busy lives, so we want short gaming sessions while still having lots of fun.”
To me, that sounds a lot more like match-based gameplay, a la World of Tanks or League of Legends, than it does any kind of all-encompassing MMORPG. Given both that and the work experience of the company’s core, I’d say there’s a better than average chance that whatever Ganymede makes will be free-to-play, so it’s likely that this won’t be the last time we cover them on this site.