If you're down and out and you want to succeed, you need to be "flawless." Or so says THQ CEO Brian Farrell.
As he told Gamasutra , his company has a long road to recovery, but he wants to prove to the stockholders that the "heavy lifting is done."
On Monday, the company's board approved a 1-for-10 reverse stock split that should allow them to remain on the Nasdaq, but it's only the beginning. Farrell said the last six months "have been an exercise in great pain and suffering" but now, the company has changed and they have "strong, new leadership." Farrell pointed towards the positive fourth quarter earnings as an indicator of the publisher's upswing, although a few investors still say they pulled the reverse split trigger too quickly. And if the company can't put out quality products, it really won't matter in the long run. Said Farrell:
"I've been doing this long enough to know that …at the end of the day, the product will drive the stock price. When it will happen, we don't control that. So the focus is on getting great products both in the near term and the long term."
A new Saints Row and the upcoming Darksiders II should help but Farrell says there are other options. They don't necessarily have to rely on big-budget AAA titles due to the shifting industry:
"I think there's a real opportunity in the changing business models we see happening in the marketplace for a smaller and more agile company like us to position ourselves quite differently. We think there's a real opportunity – particularly in the digital space on the core gamer side [and] especially on emerging platforms like the PC and some of the things we see coming down the road, where there's an opportunity for core games that are not just [made with] the highest budgets, but [offer] alternate pricing and business models There's a place to attract the core gamer there."
I don't know about you, but I have zero interest in being the leader of one of these companies. It's just too freakin' complicated. It's easy enough to sit back and say, "Hey, just make good games!" but we all know it ain't so simple. It should be, but it isn't.