The secret to a successful IP partnership is passion
We had a chat with Mike Escudero from FoxNext about what makes a great IP partner and working on passion projects
Gamesforum: Hi Mike, great to talk to you today. Can you tell us about your role at FoxNext?
Mike: Thank you for having me. At FoxNext I work in business development on our licensing and publishing team. It is my job to identify great developers to make games based on our TV shows and films. I look for strong studios with a good track record and pedigree as well as teams who are absolutely passionate about an IP.
Gamesforum: What’s been the most satisfying moment in your time at FoxNext?
Mike: Very good question. I would say it has been watching us evolve from a licensing organization to a full game developer and publisher. A couple of years ago I remember helping to identify potential companies for acquisition and thinking to myself that if Fox executes on the vision then we will be an exciting company to work for, and that I was there in the earlier days. Even though I had very little to do with it I am very proud that we were just recognized as a top 50 mobile game developer by PocketGamer. That is a list that I used to browse for top companies to partner with, and now we are on it!
Gamesforum: You’re a custodian of some of the most beloved IP globally; does that create additional pressures?
Mike: Most definitely, but it is also really exciting to be talking about and working with Fox IP that I personally enjoy. I remember watching Aliens as a kid and being frightened by it but also just loving it. It was an amazing film that sparked my interest in outer space and extraterrestrials, which led to one of my favorite shows and another Fox property, The X-Files. Now I get to talk about both of these IPs and many others with developers who are just as excited as me if not more so. So the pressure is there to do something great that true fans will love.
Gamesforum: What do you look for in partners when you’re licensing IP?
Mike: Passion. Track record. Proficiency in a genre. Team members and lead producers. Passion (it is that important).
Gamesforum: What do you see as the biggest challenge facing games developers in 2019?
Mike: Discoverability of their games, for sure. It has always been hard but there is so much noise and competition in the market place, not just for games but for people’s free time, that I think many great products will be overlooked.
Gamesforum: What games are you playing at the moment?
Mike: Marvel Strike Force of course. Toon Blast. Mad Skills BMX. Wiz Khalifa’s Weed Farm.
If you want to hear more from Mike, don’t miss The Publisher Roundtable on day 1 of Gamesforum Seattle. Together with other panellists from GameAnalytics, Flare Games and JoyPac, Mike from FoxNext Games will provide an overview of the publishing landscape, discuss the rise of boutique publishing houses, contextualise publishing within the games as a service economy and provide that all important advice on how to find the right partner to work with.Back to Blog