A few months back, Netflix signaled an active effort to move deeper into the video games market, moving beyond the video game TV series adaptations it has made a regular part of its exclusive content. There has been little word on a move since, but recently, Netflix made a major hire that may mean it’s ready to take the plunge. Former Facebook Gaming executive and gaming industry veteran Mike Verdu is joining Netflix and will be heading up a gaming division at the company immediately.
Netflix announced its hiring of Mike Verdu fairly recently, as reported by Bloomberg. Verdu has years of experience, having worked in an executive capacity at Electronic Arts and Kabam before his tenure at Facebook Gaming. Verdu was VP of augmented reality and virtual reality content before this latest major move. With the move, Verdu will become Netflix’s vice president of game development, working directly under the management of COO Greg Peters.
Netflix has been teasing the possibility of a major push into gaming for quite a while, having openly revealed that it would like to expand its relationship with the video game industry past TV series adaptations. We had heard little else since those priorities were suggested, until very recently with this Verdu hiring.
Netflix has taken on the role of a hub for many exclusive series and feature-length productions based on popular video games, including The Witcher, Castlevania, Sonic Prime, League of Legends: Arcane, DOTA: Dragon’s Blood, Resident Evil (Infinite Darkness and a live-action series), and Dragon’s Dogma to name a few. Even then, the company has long expressed a desire to be even closer to games, citing products like Fortnite as some of its greatest competition.
With Verdu taking up a prominent role in the company’s gaming efforts, it will be interesting to see where Netflix goes from here. Stay tuned as we continue to follow Netflix’s gaming push for further news and updates.