Herman Hulst of Guerilla Games is Sony's new Head of Worldwide Studios

By Heidi Nicholas, 11 days ago
The PS5 is on the horizon, and Sony Interactive Entertainment's Worldwide Studios seem to be making a lot of internal changes in the lead-up to the next generation. PlayStation announced the abrupt departure of their Chairman of Worldwide Studios, Shawn Layden, about a month ago. The departure was unexpected, and Layden himself still hasn't commented on where he plans to head next. Now, PlayStation have announced that Hermen Hulst will be taking on the role of new head of Worldwide Studios, taking over the job of overseeing all PlayStation studios, and managing Sony's game development. Hulst was previously the managing director of Guerrilla Games, best known for open-world RPG Horizon: Zero Dawn, and the Killzone series. Meanwhile, Shuhei Yoshida is leaving his role as president of Worldwide Studios to focus on independent studios.

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Horizon: Zero Dawn was highly popular, so Sony Interactive Entertainment will certainly have a capable head on its shoulders with Hulst. Speaking to GamesIndustry.biz, PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan was enthusiastic about the addition. "Hermen is one of the most effective and well-respected leaders in the video game industry. He is a passionate advocate for the teams he leads and understands how to empower creative talent to build great experiences. I have no doubt Hermen can lead our teams to deliver compelling and diverse experiences at a steady cadence."

Yoshida's role change seems to be more of a shift in focus. He'll be focusing on smaller, independent studios, and reporting to Jim Ryan. "Everybody knows just how passionate Shu is about independent games", said Ryan. "These wildly creative experiences deserve focus, and a champion like Shu at PlayStation who will ensure the entire SIE organization works together to better engage with independent developers through a culture of supporting and celebrating their contributions to PlayStation platforms." It seems Yoshida and Hulst's roles will be complimentary. Ryan says that Worldwide Studios in general won't be making "a game for one specific European country" which he says "might have been the case back in the PSP times with Invizimals [which was popular in Spain]"; he thinks "this will be where Shuhei Yoshida's new task...will come in. If we are nimble, flexible and global, we can work with smaller developers to allow those countries' specific needs to be met."

There's just about a year until the PS5 is expected to release, sometime in Holiday 2020. Sony is reshuffling and restructuring with these recent departures, acquisitions, and changes in focus, and it'll be interesting to see where they go next as 2020 approaches.

We've got the full list of Horizon: Zero Dawn trophies - check the list for guides to unlocking them.
Heidi Nicholas
Written by Heidi Nicholas
Hey, I'm Heidi! I've just finished studying a Masters in English Literature, but I've been obsessed with gaming since long before then. I began on the PS2 with Spyro, before graduating to the Xbox 360 and disappearing into Skyrim. I'm now a loyal RPG fan, but I still like to explore other genres — when I'm not playing Assassin's Creed Odyssey, or being lured back into Red Dead Redemption 2 or The Witcher 3!
Posts on this article have been added to a thread in the Industry News Forum.
AuthorMessage
Mini-Myself
164,423
Mini-Myself
Posted on 09 November 19 at 15:12
Herman? Title needs fixing ;)
NxtDutch
240,143
NxtDutch
Posted on 10 November 19 at 00:16, Edited on 10 November 19 at 00:44 by NxtDutch
Well, I hope that he still has a conservative attitude when it comes to gaming. I hope we don't see some of the trash that Xbox is pulling.

Manipulative Micro-Transactions in every one of their (very few) 1st Party games. Along with pushing "services" over games. I'm tired of these "services". I don't want services, I WANT EXCLUSIVE GAMES

I am doubtful, as the new head over there at Sony a "services" guy, Layden abruptly leaving due to the rumored power struggle. I believe that PS is undoubtedly going in that same direction, albeit slowly.
Xbox is ruining gaming. They have made record profits with no games. Shifting focus on adding more & more subscriptions, with a lack of content.
SolaceCreed
133,360
SolaceCreed
Posted on 15 November 19 at 21:05
NxtDutch said:
Well, I hope that he still has a conservative attitude when it comes to gaming. I hope we don't see some of the trash that Xbox is pulling.

Manipulative Micro-Transactions in every one of their (very few) 1st Party games. Along with pushing "services" over games. I'm tired of these "services". I don't want services, I WANT EXCLUSIVE GAMES

I am doubtful, as the new head over there at Sony a "services" guy, Layden abruptly leaving due to the rumored power struggle. I believe that PS is undoubtedly going in that same direction, albeit slowly.
Nah, they're closing down their services and only did EA Access for the people moaning it wasn't on the platform, even though MS had an timed exclusivity deal for it.
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