• Crusader Kings III Available Now!

    The realm rejoices as Paradox Interactive announces the launch of Crusader Kings III, the latest entry in the publisher’s grand strategy role-playing game franchise. Advisors may now jockey for positions of influence and adversaries should save their schemes for another day, because on this day Crusader Kings III can be purchased on Steam, the Paradox Store, and other major online retailers.


    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

TheLetterZ

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ppheader.png

Welcome Paradox Podcast Fans old and new! As the Podcast now surely proven its place in the line-up of things we do and will continue to do it is high time that we get a collected place to discuss it! If you're new here, here's the gist of it!

The Paradox Podcast is a podcast about the business of video games, brought to you by Paradox Interactive. Daniel Goldberg (Marketing & Communications) and Shams Jorjani (Business Development and Acquisitions) tries to shed a light on a part of the industry which is seldomly spoken of.

Sounds good? Agreed! But where can you enjoy the podcast?
Well, sort of everywhere! Pick your favourite:
Spotify
Soundcloud
Itunes
Player.fm
Podtoppen
acast

We also have upload every episode to our Paradox Extra Youtube channel, you'll find the full playlist HERE

In this thread, feel free to talk to one another about the verdicts of our gentle hosts Daniel and Shams, much like on our other social media this is also a great place to post your questions you want discussed or answered on the podcast. Feedback on the podcast in general or just talk about the same topics with your fellow fan! I'm sure we'll get Daniel and Shams hanging out with you right here in the thread as well!

GUIDELINE(S):
As the podcast is deep into its second season with a wide range of topics spanning every episode, if you referr to a statement or discussion please begin your post with S#E# OR E#, as an example, if discussing the latest episode currently available simply tag the statement or your full post S2E7 OR E13, the latter following our Youtube format!


That is all from me! Like you all (I dare assume) I am a big fan of the podcast and always await the next episode eagerly!
 
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stnylan

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Glad to finally see an official thread about this, though curious whg it took so long. Do Shams & Daniel prefer Reddit to their own forums? ;)

Actually, which might lead onto a query directed at Daniel - for marketing how to balance communicating with established customers versus hopefully new customers.
 

TheLetterZ

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Glad to finally see an official thread about this, though curious whg it took so long. Do Shams & Daniel prefer Reddit to their own forums? ;)
This one I can answer, we kind of had not thought to make an official thread (which is arguably a big oversight on all of our parts) until someone asked during PDXCON, after that it's just been a case of being busy with other things and it not being discussed for a bit ^^
 

danielg0ldberg

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Glad to finally see an official thread about this, though curious whg it took so long. Do Shams & Daniel prefer Reddit to their own forums? ;)

Actually, which might lead onto a query directed at Daniel - for marketing how to balance communicating with established customers versus hopefully new customers.
Very good question, and maybe something we can dig deeper into in a coming podcast. In general, we don't necessarily tend to view this as an either/or thing. The assumption (arguably proven through sales and the fact that this forum, our youtube and twitch channels etc are so active) is that the deep, engaged community (=established customers) is part of what makes PDS/PDX games interesting and attractive to newcomers. Our goal is always to convert as many people as possible into active members of our community. This is very much top of mind for the community team in particular.

That said, different marketing beats/assets of course serve different purposes. Announcements are typically designed to reach as broadly as possible (that´s why we do cool cinematic trailers after all), whilst dev diaries, feature breakdowns and similar assets are designed for an audience that is more "in the know".
 

SirAlexius

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Hi guys,

I came across the Paradox Podcast accidentally while watching other Paradox content on YouTube and it quickly became one of my favorite podcasts.

It is really nice to get an understanding of how the games industry works from people who actually work in the business side of the industry.

It seems like neither of you guys necessarily knew that you would end up in this job when you were first coming out of university. Is that assumption correct? And if so, do you think this is typical of the industry, or do you find a lot of people coming out of business school wanting to work on the publishing side of the games industry? Do you think that your unique path gave you valuable experience that others coming straight out of business school may not have?

Thank you.
 

stnylan

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As to episode length - I do find the currently 30-40 mins (usually) a pretty good length, allows you guys to cover a single topic in some quite considerable depth (see Shams episode, cost of games, loot boxes) or two or more smaller topics (see this current Episode). My fear with shorter episodes is that it would not allow you to go in-depth on a larger topic, as you have done in the past.

Possible interview guests I would like:
Ebbe (because new CEO is new CEO)
Other senior management - because money / high level stuff is a very different perspective
Individual game directors (my favourite would be Martin or Henrik)
Someone on the community side - about how to manage that side of the game industry
Mariina Hallikainen (hope I've transcribed that correctly) as we have had one CEO (Fred) on a couple of times. And hopefully will have Ebbe. So it might be nice to get yet a different perspective. As I recall Mariina has given some interesting talks in the past.
Jordan Weisman - because I think it is fair to say he has a bit of experience in the business of videogames :)
 

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As to episode length - I do find the currently 30-40 mins (usually) a pretty good length, allows you guys to cover a single topic in some quite considerable depth (see Shams episode, cost of games, loot boxes) or two or more smaller topics (see this current Episode). My fear with shorter episodes is that it would not allow you to go in-depth on a larger topic, as you have done in the past.

Possible interview guests I would like:
Ebbe (because new CEO is new CEO)
Other senior management - because money / high level stuff is a very different perspective
Individual game directors (my favourite would be Martin or Henrik)
Someone on the community side - about how to manage that side of the game industry
Mariina Hallikainen (hope I've transcribed that correctly) as we have had one CEO (Fred) on a couple of times. And hopefully will have Ebbe. So it might be nice to get yet a different perspective. As I recall Mariina has given some interesting talks in the past.
Jordan Weisman - because I think it is fair to say he has a bit of experience in the business of videogames :)
I agree that the 30+ minute format is probably the perfect length for this type of podcast. A 15 minute format may work great if Paradox ever decides to do a second podcast, maybe related to Paradox news and announcements and things like that. The Economist Radio is a really good example of a 15 minute podcast that covers small bits of news and information.

Having Jordan Weisman on the show would definitely be incredible, as well as important people from other studios that Paradox owns.

I personally really enjoyed the past discussion in S2E2 about how developers at Valve were really good at understanding the business side of the company. It could be really interesting for you guys to interview some developers from Paradox who are knowledgeable about the business model or who have strong opinions about it (for example hearing Johan's opinions was very enlightening).
 
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Shams

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Hi guys,

I came across the Paradox Podcast accidentally while watching other Paradox content on YouTube and it quickly became one of my favorite podcasts.

It is really nice to get an understanding of how the games industry works from people who actually work in the business side of the industry.

It seems like neither of you guys necessarily knew that you would end up in this job when you were first coming out of university. Is that assumption correct? And if so, do you think this is typical of the industry, or do you find a lot of people coming out of business school wanting to work on the publishing side of the games industry? Do you think that your unique path gave you valuable experience that others coming straight out of business school may not have?

Thank you.
Thanks! <3

A lot of people kinda just slipped in by accident. I studied lots of things (cinema, english lit) but ended up focusing on engineering (didn't graduate) before ending up in the games industry somewhat by accident. But the passion and interest in games has always been there for many of us. So semi-accident. Many have ubiquitous degrees that work well in the games industry. But a few 10-20%? have dedicated game development training.

For us specifically and business in particular we end up describing it as being a corporate paladin. It's a multiclass discipline where you're the master of none but know many.

I find it fairly rare that people in business positions actually have MBA's or have studied a lot of business. On one hand the games industry the industry changes so fast so it's hard to teach industry specific business. On the other hand the basics are really lacking.
 

ISitOnGnomes

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In E4: Loot Boxes, you discussed loot boxes (obviously) and how you would consider putting them in your games if you could figure out a decent way of doing so. Given the latest controversies, rulings in Belgium/Netherlands, and the statements by gaming regulators across the world to look closer at loot boxes; would you still consider putting loot boxes into your games?
 

C.N.

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The recent news about Telltale Games closing down seems to me like a suitable topic for discussion for a future podcast. For example, what mistakes they made, how to avoid them as a business, and the effect this will have on season passes and the gaming industry in general.
 

Had a dad

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Hi guys,

I really enjoyed S3E3 with Jakob Munthe. One thing I found really interesting is Jakob's discussion about how hard it is to keep the moment to moment gameplay in management games exciting. He mentioned that while there is no external threat to the city such as an enemy, the threat to the player must come from the market like in Cities or other sources.

This made me remember a forum discussion I had read a few years ago about the death of the RTS genre, and how people could not find good RTS games to play today that reminded them of old classics like Warcraft III or Battle for Middle Earth from our younger years. One person mentioned that the reason why many of us remember those games from our childhood is the city building and management aspects that we spent most of our time enjoying from them, while what others (developers and esports that came from these games) emphasized the competitive aspect and micromanagement, which is what the current existing RTS games emphasize which makes them unappealing to us. Basically people like me played those fantasy games for the management and city building and roleplay aspects, and not the RTS core gameplay.

The connection here is your discussion made me realize how much I would love to see a management fantasy game from PDX that really nailed the city building and role playing aspects. I know you can't answer the question of whether that game is/will be made, but do you think this is a type of game that would make sense to add to the management portfolio at PDS?

I have also heard Shams mention the death of RTS games in previous episodes and would love to hear a more detailed discussion about that from you guys some time.

Thanks.
 

stnylan

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A discussion about the decline of RTS would be fascinating.

Or perhaps about the rise and decline
 

danielg0ldberg

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In E4: Loot Boxes, you discussed loot boxes (obviously) and how you would consider putting them in your games if you could figure out a decent way of doing so. Given the latest controversies, rulings in Belgium/Netherlands, and the statements by gaming regulators across the world to look closer at loot boxes; would you still consider putting loot boxes into your games?
Good question, probably something we could come back to given the way this topic has developed!
 

Shams

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Hi guys,

I really enjoyed S3E3 with Jakob Munthe. One thing I found really interesting is Jakob's discussion about how hard it is to keep the moment to moment gameplay in management games exciting. He mentioned that while there is no external threat to the city such as an enemy, the threat to the player must come from the market like in Cities or other sources.

This made me remember a forum discussion I had read a few years ago about the death of the RTS genre, and how people could not find good RTS games to play today that reminded them of old classics like Warcraft III or Battle for Middle Earth from our younger years. One person mentioned that the reason why many of us remember those games from our childhood is the city building and management aspects that we spent most of our time enjoying from them, while what others (developers and esports that came from these games) emphasized the competitive aspect and micromanagement, which is what the current existing RTS games emphasize which makes them unappealing to us. Basically people like me played those fantasy games for the management and city building and roleplay aspects, and not the RTS core gameplay.

The connection here is your discussion made me realize how much I would love to see a management fantasy game from PDX that really nailed the city building and role playing aspects. I know you can't answer the question of whether that game is/will be made, but do you think this is a type of game that would make sense to add to the management portfolio at PDS?

I have also heard Shams mention the death of RTS games in previous episodes and would love to hear a more detailed discussion about that from you guys some time.

Thanks.
Thanks.

I'd love to delve into the topic of the death of RTS games or genres in general. You wouldn't imagine how much time Jakob and I have spent arguing about external threats/player fantasies in management games :)
 

stnylan

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Very nice to hear from @candyalien (I hope I remembered your Paradox username right) and hear about the less obvious - strategic - aspect of your role as opposed to the most visible aspect. And about how you came to enter Paradox.

I was very interested to hear that there are 300,000 active forum posters (as opposed to users, if I understood what was said correctly).

Future guests:
Ebbe
The @podcat podcast is still on my wishlist.
Also @Wiz
Also Mr Wiesman
Someone from art
Someone from QA

Future topics:
The Decline and Fall of Telltale Games - would be a topical topic

More Loot Boxes - quite a lot of news on this front with stuff happening in Belgium for example.

The History of the Development of the Paradox DLC model - This one is of particular interest to me, because from my memory of the company the model has gone through at least two major iterations I can think of. Namely the first two DLCs (Revolutions and Deus Vult) from the outside seemed to be about fixing games that were, if not broken on release, then certainly not firing on all cylinders (especially relevant I think to CK and Deus Vult).

Then you had the game overhaul era, as it were. This really started with HoI2 Doomsday Armegeddon, and progressed through EU3, HoI3, and Victoria II. Vae Victis for Rome I think is an interesting case as in function I believe it operated more like the former, whilst arriving in the later era.

Then you had the modular DLC era starting with CK2 and continuing to this day. Though even here we are seeing more innovations with this model.

The point of this would be to show how a business model can evolve over time and be iterated upon.
 

stnylan

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Having @StarNaN on the podcast would be amazing because he could talk both about his role as QA and the topic of the death of RTS, being an ex-pro Starcraft player.
That sounds like an excellent idea.