Gameloft at peace with copycat reputation

If imitation truly is the sincerest form of flattery, then the mobile game developers at Gameloft can be considered one of the videogame world's most prolific ass-kissers. Good as their games may be, there's no denying that Gameloft's app store empire is built on blatant copies of popular PC and console titles. Far from denying its cloning habit, however, a new interview with Gameloft's CEO Michel Guillemot reveals that the studio actually embraces its role as a harbinger of well-made iOS knock-offs. In fact, Guillemot argues that the company is doing mobile gaming consumers a favor.

Speaking with IGN on the ups and downs of developing games for mobile platforms, Gameloft CEO Michel Guillemot defended the studio's practices, saying, “The video game industry has always played around a limited number of themes. There is maybe one new idea a year."

Above: Shadow Guardian (aka Uncharted)

Based on this philosophy, Guillemot explained that releasing games inspired by other popular titles is on par with what other developers are doing themselves, and that Gameloft's is simply filling a demand for deep, high-quality gaming experiences on mobile devices.

"[Our games] are for people that are not hardcore but want an immersive experience," says Guillemot.  “If a type of game is not available, then you should make it. The damaging thing is if you do a bad expression of a good idea."

Above: Hero of Sparta (aka God of War)

Still not a fan of Gameloft's MO? That may be too bad. Not only has Gameloft become one of the app stores most successful publishers, but the company recently inked a deal with Panasonic to pipe some its more popular games such as N.O.V.A (aka Halo) and Asphalt 5 (aka Gran Turismo) directly into Panasonic's future line of Viera Connect HDTVs. Gameloft may be one of the most blatant copycats in the industry, but they're making a ton of coin doing it and they aren't about to stop anytime soon.

The complete interview, along with a few choice words for EA's app store strategy, can be read at IGN.  

Jan 12, 2011

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