Today 2K Boston, of BioShock fame, announced that it has changed its name back to Irrational Games. Some of you may remember two and a half years ago when publisher 2K sought to show solidarity in it’s development studios by rebranding Irrational Games as 2K Boston and 2K Australia.
Apparently 2K has decided that studio solidarity isn’t the most important thing, and that studio identity plays a major role when gamers are deciding which games to buy. According to 2K, the rebranded studio doesn’t just bring a new logo, but also a new focus on the studio’s style and fanbase.
2K isn’t the only publisher doing this either. EA rebranded its EA Redwood Shores studio to Visceral Games back in May 09. According to EA, the name change was an attempt to help gamers identify what type of games the studio will create.
This news item really has me thinking “How big of a role does a studio’s identity play when gamers purchase games?” I know, for example, that I buy every game Valve releases because I feel that Valve has a certain level of quality, open mindedness, and artistic integrity that it implements into its games that I just don’t see in other titles produced by other studios. Do you guys find yourselves thinking this way, or am I the only one suckered in by this genre of marketing?