Rob Crossley – PlayStack Interview

 
Rob Crossley

Rob Crossley

PlayStack

Hi Rob, thanks for chatting with us today. Can you tell us how you came to work here at PlayStack?

Rob

Hi guys! I was working for Creative England, where I came up with the idea of putting together a co-publishing agreement with PlayStack, to help utilise their expertise.  A few months later, I got back in touch with Harvey, PlayStack’s CEO, to talk about some upcoming games. We got on really well, and we had the same ideas about what games needed, what the “good signs” were for potential games and so on. During one of our meetings Harvey popped the question, and for some reason I felt very embarrassed that he offered me a job!

PlayStack

Brilliant. As the Head of Developer Partnerships, what does your day to day role entail?

Rob

The main part of my role is discovery. It’s my job see every game in development around the world right now, and to understand the landscape in which we operate. To do that, you need to know and be visible to everyone so that you can look across as many games as possible.

The second part of my job is assessing games. My friends always say that my job is just playing games all day, but I’m not actually playing games, I’m looking at unfinished ideas and seeing how they can develop. The third part of my job is essentially clairvoyance. I look at the market, drill down numbers, and figure out how well a product will perform commercially.

I also keep the wider company aware of what we are doing. Every Thursday I have the whole team look at 5 games I think have significant potential. The company is full of experts, and it’s great to have a real debate about how far a game can go. On top of this I get involved with a lot of things I don’t strictly need to.

 

Rob Crossley

Rob Crossley

Snipers Vs Thieves

Snipers Vs Thieves

 

PlayStack

How do you go about knowing everyone?

Rob

Prior to my previous role, I was a games journalist for about 8 years, which meant I met a staggering number of people all the time. I have been in the industry for a long time and I put myself out there. I go to as many events and see as many people as I can, and I try to be as visible online as possible.

PlayStack

How do you see your role developing at PlayStack?

Rob

The only thing I want to do is find a game, or a number of games, that with our help can go a long way and be fantastic hits. There is a lot of potential in the games industry, and it is my role as a publisher to unlock that.

Dick Wilde

Dick Wilde

PlayStack

Have you got any advice for people wanting to get into the industry?

Rob

There’s so much advice to offer, but probably the most important is you have to really know in your heart that you want to work in the games industry. If you are passionate enough, you will eventually get the job. Consistency and persistence is the key to getting your foot in the door. The games industry is just filled with wonderful kind nice people, and I think people skills are very important.

PlayStack

What games have inspired you and what games are you currently playing?

Rob

Alex Kidd in Miracle World was the first game I ever played. It was a mercilessly unfair game, and I’m talking perversely unfair. I actually went back a few years ago and completed it, we had so much unfinished business. Other games that have influenced me are: Super Mario World, Streets of Rage 2, Street Fighter 2, Mario 64, Goldeneye, Ocarina of Time, Half Life 2, F-Zero X and DOOM.

Currently, I play a lot of Hearthstone, and have racked up 35 full days of play time in the last 4 years. I finally reached Legend rank on that recently. That game is an absolute masterpiece, and it is full of brilliant ideas, and there is so much thinking going on with every single game, it is just so intense. I also play as many indie games as I can, currently playing Little Nightmares, Cuphead and Homesick.

PlayStack

Amazing – thanks Rob!

 
Harriet Hughes