Matty Rich on PSP
John Gaudiosi sits down with Hollywood producer Matty Rich to discuss his upcoming PSP game and hopes for the platform.
Hollywood writer/director/producer Matty Rich (The Inkwell, Straight Out of Brooklyn) got hooked on gaming after he spent eight months living in France and overseeing the development of Ubisoft's 187: Ride or Die as creative director of the Xbox and PlayStation 2 title. Rich has teamed up with videogame producer and game designer Frederic Markus (Marc Ecko's Getting Up, Enter the Matrix, Midnight Club) to create Matty/Markus Games (MMG). The new Los Angeles-based videogame publisher will focus on creating original IP exclusively for Sony's PSP game platform.
Rich said the new company will release its first two PSP games in fall 2006. MMG games will be budgeted in the $3 million to $5 million range and development times will last between eight and 12 months. Rich said MMG will work with game developers around the globe, including in Japan, Montreal and France.
The first game from MMG, currently untitled, is a Mature-rated lowrider street racing game that will feature the likeness, voicework and music of double platinum hip-hop recording artist, The Game. The Game, in conjunction with his managers Jimmy Rosemond and Delaney McGill, will also produce an original soundtrack for the videogame. Rich said that the videogame will have approximately 15 exclusive tracks, and that a videogame soundtrack CD will likely be released, as well.
"Videogames are the new MTV," said Rich. "I'm working closely with The Game to design visuals around his music and his ideas. It's a collaboration and The Game is bringing his own visual content and creativity to the game, just as he does to the music studio."
Rich worked with Guerilla Black to create an original soundtrack for "187: Ride or Die," which shipped this summer from Ubisoft. He said MMG will treat original game projects the same as Hollywood film and TV projects.
"I see videogames as a new way for Hollywood talent to express themselves," said Rich, who said he is currently in talks with a number of Hollywood actors to provide voices and likenesses for his games.
While the street racing game will focus on rapper The Game, there will be supporting roles that Rich will cast to actors who want to be part of this new entertainment form.
Rich previously worked with Larenz Tate and Noel G on "187."
MMG will focus on creating "streetwise" crime-based, sports, comedy, action, and adventure games for PSP aimed at a mature gaming audience. Rich believes MMG will put its own unique stamp on the burgeoning PSP game library.
"Our company will become a leading force in PSP games much like Miramax was in Hollywood in the '80s and '90s," said Rich. "We'll bring original, story-driven games to market cost-effectively that will be made for gamers by talented developers and brought to life with the help of Hollywood talent."
Sony has shipped over 10 million PSP units worldwide since its launch 10 months ago in Japan. Rich said that MMG will license out its original IPs to other publishers for current and next generation consoles, allowing the company to focus whole-heartedly on the powerful PSP device.
"I believe more consumers will gravitate to PSP because of its capabilities to play console-quality games, as well as movies, TV shows and music on the go," said Rich.
Rich is the third Hollywood veteran to enter the games space. Actor Vin Diesel established Tigon Studios two years ago and had a hit with its first Xbox game, "Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay." Producer/director John Woo co-founded Tiger Hill Entertainment and is currently developing the next generation "Stranglehold" for publisher Midway Games. While both of these companies focus on the convergence of Hollywood talent and games, MMG is the only company to focus solely on the PSP device.
Like Diesel, Rich is a gamer. He told Modojo that the games MMG will make will provide solid gaming experiences for on-the-go gamers. The Hollywood celebrities and musicians will round out the experience, but will never supercede the gameplay experience.