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Guerrilla Games' Hermen Hulst is PlayStation's new head of Worldwide Studios

Callibretto

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,497
Indonesia
I wonder if Shu will focus on exclusive games with indie, like reviving some old IP with independent studio, more stuff like Medievil remake, Erica, Predator, including games by Blupoint, Hausemarque etc. Or if it's more like Boyes job where the focus is more on bringing indie game to playstation, exclusives or not.
 

DrDeckard

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,384
He was talking about retiring but PSVR came about and he decided to stick around for a few more years and he's been all about indie games on his twitter account. This sounds like a guy who wants to keep working but doing what he likes and has the clout to get that to happen. I doubt Shu even works for Sony by the time a PS6 is even being talked about in the public.
I totally get this, and I agree with you...some people want to carry on working and I love that drive and ambition.

if you want to be straight about it, just facts though...he isn’t stepping down he is being “repositioned” it Is not wrong seeing that as a demotion.

all the best to Shu though. He is genuinely a likeable guy and he deserves to be looked after.

i also think Hulst is a great shout. Relatable and passionate. All this is good really, we will see how it all pans out.
 

photogazuk

Member
Dec 11, 2018
20
I hate to say it Shu's new position seems like a demotion to me. There's been lots of departures lately but perhaps Shu being Japanese it's a case of the Japanese work culture where you can't really make somebody redundant you just move them elsewhere. Or perhaps he's fed up of travelling so much and wanted to be repositioned. Or perhaps I'm just reading too much into it.
 

Hoo-doo

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,667
The Netherlands
It’s baffling to see people act like this is ‘shifting control’ to the EU. What, just because this guy is dutch he can’t have international views of business and will only care about Europe? What an absolutely dumb line of reasoning.
 

Callibretto

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,497
Indonesia
I hate to say it Shu's new position seems like a demotion to me. There's been lots of departures lately but perhaps Shu being Japanese it's a case of the Japanese work culture where you can't really make somebody redundant you just move them elsewhere. Or perhaps he's fed up of travelling so much and wanted to be repositioned. Or perhaps I'm just reading too much into it.
Unless Shu is only dealing with japanese indie studio, I imagine he will still travel around, didn't he just post picture with playstation malaysia right after the announcement.
 

crimilde

Member
Oct 26, 2017
1,257
It’s baffling to see people act like this is ‘shifting control’ to the EU. What, just because this guy is dutch he can’t have international views of business and will only care about Europe? What an absolutely dumb line of reasoning.
Yeah people are acting as if he's gonna forget about all studios not located in Europe, it's so weird. That's not how multinational corporations work.
 

TazKa

Member
Oct 27, 2017
275
Yeah people are acting as if he's gonna forget about all studios not located in Europe, it's so weird. That's not how multinational corporations work.
And many seem to do not know that Hulst already was vice president of wws.
The man already knows and worked for years in a global position with other 1st party studios.

With him on top of wws I have to admit I am excited for the presentation of PS5, because he will be there and I think he has a very good presence from previous Meetings and E3.
 

crimilde

Member
Oct 26, 2017
1,257
And many seem to do not know that Hulst already was vice president of wws.
The man already knows and worked for years in a global position with other 1st party studios.

With him on top of wws I have to admit I am excited for the presentation of PS5, because he will be there and I think he has a very good presence from previous Meetings and E3.
He's been VP of SIE since 2011 if I remember correctly, not WWS, but yeah, your point is totally right. It's not like he was just dropped into this position without any background whatsoever. Exciting times ahead!

Edit - Nope, you were right, Vice President - Sony Interactive Entertainment / World Wide Studios 2011-2019.
 

Thorrgal

Member
Oct 26, 2017
5,017
This is cool congrats to Shu on his new endeavors. So long as Jimbo and Hermen don’t forget PlayStaion runs through America I’ll be fine. SCEE’s contributions pale in comparison and the industry is firmly focused in America. Druckmann would’ve been a better pick tbh.
You don't know that really, you have no idea of how both of them compared regarding his skills for leading that division.

Plus maybe he didn't even want that position, so why even dismiss Hermen due to his nationality or the fact he's european...sounds a bit weird
 

plow

Member
Oct 28, 2017
605
You don't know that really, you have no idea of how both of them compared regarding his skills for leading that division.

Plus maybe he didn't even want that position, so why even dismiss Hermen due to his nationality or the fact he's european...sounds a bit weird
Because 'murica. I don't know any other reason why anyone would have a problem with Hermen. He has an amazing bio and made Guerilla what they are today...but yeah, he's not american lol.
 

Mario Bilo

Member
Jan 7, 2018
750
This is cool congrats to Shu on his new endeavors. So long as Jimbo and Hermen don’t forget PlayStaion runs through America I’ll be fine. SCEE’s contributions pale in comparison and the industry is firmly focused in America. Druckmann would’ve been a better pick tbh.
I'm going to quote you specifically but my point relates to all the people in the thread who seem to be expressing a similar sentiment.

1. First of all it all sounds like a bunch of crying over the fact that they dared to say that PS is not going to be doing things the American way or that people on top who speak English are not from the US. This not only shows very little knowledge of how big multinational companies are run but seems a little bit xenophobic to be honest.
2. Sony's success has never hinged on the US market. Yes it is the biggest market but it is not the most important to Sony. Sony survives and profits from the sheer number of small market that they dominate exactly because they don't just focus on the US or Japan.
3. The industry being rooted in America kind of thinking got MS to think that if they talk about an American TV problem or that everyone in the world has wifi because people in the US have wifi or designating countries as Tier 1 and Tier 2. I don't want that kind of thinking in Sony at all.
4. This decision does not mean that Sony will suddenly start shutting down US studios and start buying up European ones. When yes they could do with another studio in Europe (and Asia) thinking Hulst will be a vengeful evil European who will take out the US studios is ridiculous.
5. God of War reboot showed that when you don't focus on just one market how a game can break out. The old GoW games were very focused on the US market and did sell extremely well there. With the 2018 game Sony specifically said it wanted to bring it to the European gamers who tend to focus on the story more.
6.Also guess who said that? Shawn Layden who is from the US. So no just because you're from one country doesn't mean that you need to disregard and endanger everything from other countries. Similarly House has been the head of PlayStation for years and he's European as well, and yet nothing nefarious in favour of Europe was ever done.

Overall let's stop with this nationalistic crap and discuss people on their merits and on their career.
 

Nakenorm

The Fallen
Oct 26, 2017
5,262
Sweden
I'm going to quote you specifically but my point relates to all the people in the thread who seem to be expressing a similar sentiment.

1. First of all it all sounds like a bunch of crying over the fact that they dared to say that PS is not going to be doing things the American way or that people on top who speak English are not from the US. This not only shows very little knowledge of how big multinational companies are run but seems a little bit xenophobic to be honest.
2. Sony's success has never hinged on the US market. Yes it is the biggest market but it is not the most important to Sony. Sony survives and profits from the sheer number of small market that they dominate exactly because they don't just focus on the US or Japan.
3. The industry being rooted in America kind of thinking got MS to think that if they talk about an American TV problem or that everyone in the world has wifi because people in the US have wifi or designating countries as Tier 1 and Tier 2. I don't want that kind of thinking in Sony at all.
4. This decision does not mean that Sony will suddenly start shutting down US studios and start buying up European ones. When yes they could do with another studio in Europe (and Asia) thinking Hulst will be a vengeful evil European who will take out the US studios is ridiculous.
5. God of War reboot showed that when you don't focus on just one market how a game can break out. The old GoW games were very focused on the US market and did sell extremely well there. With the 2018 game Sony specifically said it wanted to bring it to the European gamers who tend to focus on the story more.
6.Also guess who said that? Shawn Layden who is from the US. So no just because you're from one country doesn't mean that you need to disregard and endanger everything from other countries. Similarly House has been the head of PlayStation for years and he's European as well, and yet nothing nefarious in favour of Europe was ever done.

Overall let's stop with this nationalistic crap and discuss people on their merits and on their career.
 

Carn

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,895
The Netherlands
Funny to see all the 'fearmongering' while it's very common that multinationals (like Sony) have all kinds of nationalities at an executive level.
 
Oct 27, 2017
6,772
Nowhere did I say that the rest of his work meant 0, I happen to like the guy a lot, but calling Demon's Souls "unbelievably bad" is a pretty big fuck up no matter how many years you got under yer belt. He redeemed himself somewhat with Bloodborne
Apparently before release the game was a huge mess, and it only came together very late on. He definitely should have gone to them with the offer of a deal once he realised what the final product was like, but maybe he did that and Bamco had already got in there with a deal to create Dark Souls.

Sony has thousands of employees. SIE headquarters are in the US, most of the first party studios are in the US, a US studio was added this year, dozens of people in Europe got fired recently because Sony wanted to keep only the american guys doing the same job....

Yet 2 managers from Europe got promoted and Europe is taking over... :-D

Jim got the job because he proved for a very long time being one of the best, EMEA is the n1 market for PS.

and Hermen got this job because he probably proved himself too those last years.

SIE is still very US focused.

In terms of management/sales those last >10 years Europe > the rest. So it is obvious seeing europeans at the top.
ITT - people still unironically believe that one man's promotion means SIE Europe is taking over.
 

YukiCT

Member
Oct 30, 2017
1,023
It seems like they're streamlined the structure and having two positions that encompass much more responsibility than before. This new initiative seems to be in response to Sony's slowly decreasing support and I don't think it's something that they are looking at short term. Both positions were announced at the same time clearly looking ahead into something sustainable and growth. Indie's are only worse if you don't think indies have much worth and importance but it's going to be a huge importance to Sony not just the launch but services and VR all require a lot of games which they aren't going to do just by making AAA games but I think it's more telling that Shu seems to be communicating very positively about the change. Indies aren't just about Western Indies either. There's plenty of games from small developers across Asia in which Shuhei has likely been involved with.

The conversation about regions is just stupid particular with the reasons the structural changes are happening. GG has provided their engine to two different developers more recently Kojima and clearly contributed with development as part of a multinational collaboration and promoting Hermen who was in the leadership role during this process is the complete opposite of focusing on a specific region. It's about increasing the presence in every single one and collaborating and improving each other from different parts of the world. There's a huge amount of talent beyond just one region and Hermen seems perfect for the role given his experiences and expertise.
 
Oct 27, 2017
6,772
So Horizon 60fps Remaster on PS5 is certain? Awesome!
There won't be remasters of PS4 games, but hopefully PS5 has enough power to brute force things like higher frame rates and better resolutions. Next gen they're obviously going to focus a lot on 4K and all that shite, but personally I would prefer 1080p and 60fps to be locked down first.
 

chris 1515

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,496
Barcelona Spain
It seems like they're streamlined the structure and having two positions that encompass much more responsibility than before. This new initiative seems to be in response to Sony's slowly decreasing support and I don't think it's something that they are looking at short term. Both positions were announced at the same time clearly looking ahead into something sustainable and growth. Indie's are only worse if you don't think indies have much worth and importance but it's going to be a huge importance to Sony not just the launch but services and VR all require a lot of games which they aren't going to do just by making AAA games but I think it's more telling that Shu seems to be communicating very positively about the change. Indies aren't just about Western Indies either. There's plenty of games from small developers across Asia in which Shuhei has likely been involved with.

The conversation about regions is just stupid particular with the reasons the structural changes are happening. GG has provided their engine to two different developers more recently Kojima and clearly contributed with development as part of a multinational collaboration and promoting Hermen who was in the leadership role during this process is the complete opposite of focusing on a specific region. It's about increasing the presence in every single one and collaborating and improving each other from different parts of the world. There's a huge amount of talent beyond just one region and Hermen seems perfect for the role given his experiences and expertise.
For me this is a good news for asian indie too and people thinking Shuhei position is not important, they have no idea how much indies will be crucial to PSNow and PSVR and PSVR 2 later.
 

HStallion

Member
Oct 25, 2017
30,724
Love this news Hermen is a great choice especially since he has been VP of SIE for years.



Time for Hermen to give Bend their own mobcap studio especially after the financial success of Days Gone.
I actually think the people at Bend said that if Days Gone was a success, it was, that they'd get their own mocap studio built instead of having to travel down to SSM to use theirs.
 

McFly

Member
Nov 26, 2017
730
Nowhere did I say that the rest of his work meant 0, I happen to like the guy a lot, but calling Demon's Souls "unbelievably bad" is a pretty big fuck up no matter how many years you got under yer belt. He redeemed himself somewhat with Bloodborne
Just because the game found some success and a cult following does not mean it wasn't bad then. Commercially he realized he fucked up.
What happened with Demon’s Souls was until very late in the game’s development, we were not able to play the game through. There were framerate issues and the network was not up and running. We underestimated the quality of the game and to be honest, the media in Japan did the same.
When it was close to final I spent close to two hours playing it and after two hours I was still standing at the beginning at the game. I said, “This is crap. This is an unbelievably bad game.” So I put it aside.
Absolutely! I hope we won’t make the same mistake again. I should have been more stubborn talking to marketing people here in North America and Europe.
Hence Bloodborne
 

liquidmetal14

Member
Oct 25, 2017
591
Florida
I think the shifts and changes will bring a humble approach necessary to repeat the success of the PS4. People are wanting to do good by the gamers and also want to prove themselves. Fresh paint of coat with some good people at the helm.
 

Apathy

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,046
Funny to see all the 'fearmongering' while it's very common that multinationals (like Sony) have all kinds of nationalities at an executive level.
No you see, Sony must have executives from Y region, where Y is the region I make up to be required for Sony to succeed so I can make my argument that this is a bad move because of fanboy reasons. Lol we had one person claim NA was going to be squeezed out because of this. How delusional can some people get?
 

Papacheeks

Member
Oct 27, 2017
3,903
Watertown, NY
No you see, Sony must have executives from Y region, where Y is the region I make up to be required for Sony to succeed so I can make my argument that this is a bad move because of fanboy reasons. Lol we had one person claim NA was going to be squeezed out because of this. How delusional can some people get?
It's like they think Sony lives in an alternate reality where they don't know what they are doing? Obviously multiple gens with success stories even after last gen with how it was really rough they saw the strength in WW.
 

funky

Member
Oct 25, 2017
7,397
I wonder if having a bunch of Europeans in charge but keeping the HQ in the US will help cure the internal bullshit that goes on between Playstation US and EU or if will just get worse.
 

Nightengale

Member
Oct 26, 2017
2,638
Malaysia
I wonder if having a bunch of Europeans in charge but keeping the HQ in the US will help cure the internal bullshit that goes on between Playstation US and EU or if will just get worse.
There are Americans and Japanese and Europeans in global positions, across San Mateo, Japan and Europe. The way a global organisation looks at the end of the day is that the leadership team, are made up of people who are set up in different locations globally.

For example - in spite of departures from Gio and John Drake, their boss - https://www.linkedin.com/in/phil-rosenberg-1790a66/, Phil - based in US was the global head of third-party and always was.

What happens in this kind of restructure - is that instead of 3 different people who share relatively equal power due to regional set-up, for one particular thing, one person in different roles now leads it. There are roles where it's an American, there are roles where it's European.

Granted, regional competitiveness will always be there in some form, as there'll always be a country-level teams, but if done right, the friction should ideally be much better in a medium term. ( Short term there'll be a fair bit of disgruntled jealousy over whichever team felt that their preferred boss didn't manage to be the winner )
 

SolidSnakex

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,366
There are Americans and Japanese and Europeans in global positions, across San Mateo, Japan and Europe. The way a global organisation looks at the end of the day is that the leadership team, are made up of people who are set up in different locations globally.

For example - in spite of departures from Gio and John Drake, their boss - https://www.linkedin.com/in/phil-rosenberg-1790a66/, Phil - based in US was the global head of third-party and always was.

What happens in this kind of restructure - is that instead of 3 different people who share relatively equal power due to regional set-up, for one particular thing, one person in different roles now leads it. There are roles where it's an American, there are roles where it's European.

Granted, regional competitiveness will always be there in some form, as there'll always be a country-level teams, but if done right, the friction should ideally be much better in a medium term. ( Short term there'll be a fair bit of disgruntled jealousy over whichever team felt that their preferred boss didn't manage to be the winner )
Clicking that link reveled something that I didn't know, wihch is that Grace is still at Playstation. She doesn't make the blog posts anymore so I thought she'd left, but it turns out that it's probably because she got promoted to being the VP of the entirely of PSN.
 
Oct 27, 2017
3,819
Somewhere South
I doubt Horizon will get a patch, the game will be too old by then
Sony's been pretty good with post-launch support overall. I can see first party games that are getting sequels (HZD, GoW, Days Gone, Spidey) getting patches, so people who haven't played them yet have yet another reason to pick them up. It's a good way to generate some hype for the sequels, as well, and generates customer goodwill.
 

swaggy

Member
Mar 11, 2018
878
Just wanted to say that Jim Ryan has always seemed like the most swaggerless person alive. Hermen is great, but man seeing Jim Ryan being an even bigger figure is not cool.
 

poklane

Member
Oct 25, 2017
6,243
the Netherlands
So will Hermen be a visible figure at conferences now? I find him to be quite likable.
I would expect him to be the main guy yeah. Whenever you see something new from a Sony studio you'll see someone from that studio, Jim Ryan or Hermen Hulst. And if I had to choose between putting Jim Ryan or Hermen Hulst up on stage that's an easy choice if I'm being honest.
 

NediarPT88

Member
Oct 29, 2017
3,691
PS5 is backwards compatible with PS4. I doubt Sony will remaster any of their games. I doubt Horizon will get a patch, the game will be too old by then
inFamous SS got a patch for Pro, almost 3 years after its release.

PS4 games, like the big ones from Sony WWS, getting similar patches for PS5 would be a selling point for the console. Stuff like faster load times, increased resolution, 60fps for games like GOW which had unlocked framerate in the Pro version, etc. I hope that'll be the case.
 
Oct 27, 2017
3,819
Somewhere South
Jimbo is an ok presenter. As much as I liked Shawn, he was neither comfortable nor particularly good at doing the whole thing.

That said, Hermen will be one up there, for sure.
 
Oct 25, 2017
6,080
There won't be remasters of PS4 games, but hopefully PS5 has enough power to brute force things like higher frame rates and better resolutions. Next gen they're obviously going to focus a lot on 4K and all that shite, but personally I would prefer 1080p and 60fps to be locked down first.
Checkerboard 4K and 60fps should be doable for any patched PS4 game.
 

Mathieran

Member
Oct 25, 2017
4,128
I would expect him to be the main guy yeah. Whenever you see something new from a Sony studio you'll see someone from that studio, Jim Ryan or Hermen Hulst. And if I had to choose between putting Jim Ryan or Hermen Hulst up on stage that's an easy choice if I'm being honest.
yeah Jim Ryan has been good, but Hermen is more likable and seems more passionate about games
 

DangerMouse

Member
Oct 25, 2017
12,756
It's like they think Sony lives in an alternate reality where they don't know what they are doing? Obviously multiple gens with success stories even after last gen with how it was really rough they saw the strength in WW.
Yup lol.

Jimbo is an ok presenter. As much as I liked Shawn, he was neither comfortable nor particularly good at doing the whole thing.

That said, Hermen will be one up there, for sure.
Yeah, I think we'll see Jim and he'll probably be even better now since he'll get more popular things to talk about like their games first focus etc., like how Andrew House got a lot of good news to talk about (whereas in the past Jim's had to be the one to address the controversial stuff), but I think we see a lot more Hermen showing off first party games which is great since he seems like a great presenter. Like I doubt anyone's forgotten how passionate he came off when first showing HZD, and this was right after fan-favorite TLG so he easily could have been drowned out, along with other good interviews he's done over the years where he's also come off very likable and passionate about the games.

It’s baffling to see people act like this is ‘shifting control’ to the EU. What, just because this guy is dutch he can’t have international views of business and will only care about Europe? What an absolutely dumb line of reasoning.
Yup.

In the gameindustry.biz interview Ryan even addresses it and that even with them streamlining and globalizing it's not going to stop them from still adjusting each campaign for each region. Jim Ryan being from the Europe side clearly understands how important it will still be to continue not to do a "one region fits all approach" that people seem to be jumping to conclusions on.

Jim Ryan said:

"You see that again with the new global brand campaign. It's slightly different here because it uses a global framework, but with regional applications. The European execution showcases FIFA principally, the US execution showcases Fortnite, and the Japanese execution showcases Final Fantasy VII. Again, this is one campaign with tailored regional executions, but the campaign is just done once. These are areas where we see having a global approach as being logical -- necessary perhaps -- and certainly beneficial to the gaming community."

The global approach is more streamlined, but that regional focus was part of what made PlayStation unique. The fact that the campaigns differed from market to market may seem wasteful, but it allowed Sony to have a presence in regions where its competitors barely register.

"Yes, we feel we need to become a more global organisation, but this is absolutely not at the expense of our in-market strength at a country level. And I really want to reinforce the point that globalisation does not mean Americanisation, or vice versa. Becoming a global organisation does not, in any way, shape or form, mean becoming an American organisation. I'm living proof of that, as a good Geordie boy sitting here running PlayStation."
 
Last edited:

7threst

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,756
Netherlands
I'm going to quote you specifically but my point relates to all the people in the thread who seem to be expressing a similar sentiment.

1. First of all it all sounds like a bunch of crying over the fact that they dared to say that PS is not going to be doing things the American way or that people on top who speak English are not from the US. This not only shows very little knowledge of how big multinational companies are run but seems a little bit xenophobic to be honest.
2. Sony's success has never hinged on the US market. Yes it is the biggest market but it is not the most important to Sony. Sony survives and profits from the sheer number of small market that they dominate exactly because they don't just focus on the US or Japan.
3. The industry being rooted in America kind of thinking got MS to think that if they talk about an American TV problem or that everyone in the world has wifi because people in the US have wifi or designating countries as Tier 1 and Tier 2. I don't want that kind of thinking in Sony at all.
4. This decision does not mean that Sony will suddenly start shutting down US studios and start buying up European ones. When yes they could do with another studio in Europe (and Asia) thinking Hulst will be a vengeful evil European who will take out the US studios is ridiculous.
5. God of War reboot showed that when you don't focus on just one market how a game can break out. The old GoW games were very focused on the US market and did sell extremely well there. With the 2018 game Sony specifically said it wanted to bring it to the European gamers who tend to focus on the story more.
6.Also guess who said that? Shawn Layden who is from the US. So no just because you're from one country doesn't mean that you need to disregard and endanger everything from other countries. Similarly House has been the head of PlayStation for years and he's European as well, and yet nothing nefarious in favour of Europe was ever done.

Overall let's stop with this nationalistic crap and discuss people on their merits and on their career.
Thank you for this.
 

DangerMouse

Member
Oct 25, 2017
12,756
I'm going to quote you specifically but my point relates to all the people in the thread who seem to be expressing a similar sentiment.

1. First of all it all sounds like a bunch of crying over the fact that they dared to say that PS is not going to be doing things the American way or that people on top who speak English are not from the US. This not only shows very little knowledge of how big multinational companies are run but seems a little bit xenophobic to be honest.
2. Sony's success has never hinged on the US market. Yes it is the biggest market but it is not the most important to Sony. Sony survives and profits from the sheer number of small market that they dominate exactly because they don't just focus on the US or Japan.
3. The industry being rooted in America kind of thinking got MS to think that if they talk about an American TV problem or that everyone in the world has wifi because people in the US have wifi or designating countries as Tier 1 and Tier 2. I don't want that kind of thinking in Sony at all.
4. This decision does not mean that Sony will suddenly start shutting down US studios and start buying up European ones. When yes they could do with another studio in Europe (and Asia) thinking Hulst will be a vengeful evil European who will take out the US studios is ridiculous.
5. God of War reboot showed that when you don't focus on just one market how a game can break out. The old GoW games were very focused on the US market and did sell extremely well there. With the 2018 game Sony specifically said it wanted to bring it to the European gamers who tend to focus on the story more.
6.Also guess who said that? Shawn Layden who is from the US. So no just because you're from one country doesn't mean that you need to disregard and endanger everything from other countries. Similarly House has been the head of PlayStation for years and he's European as well, and yet nothing nefarious in favour of Europe was ever done.

Overall let's stop with this nationalistic crap and discuss people on their merits and on their career.
Well said.
 

RoninStrife

Member
Oct 27, 2017
1,974
Is Herman Hulst also heading that movie division in charge of movie/gaming ip's?
Shaun Layden was heading it. Have they shelved that division?