Trendy Entertainment, creators of the multi-platform tower defense meets action-RPG hit Dungeon Defenders, announced today a prominent transition in leadership, hiring Darrell Rodriguez, a former LucasArts president and Electronic Arts executive, as Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Rodriguez joins the studio as it prepares to launch the company’s highly anticipated sequel to Dungeon Defenders and a cross-platform development platform – playverse – which will expand the company’s library of intellectual property giving independent game makers the tools and flexibility they need to bring their own cross-platform products to market.
“Trendy Entertainment was among the first companies to recognize that digitally distributed releases deserve the same high-quality treatment as traditional retail titles,” noted Mr. Rodriguez, on what first drew him to the studio. “AAA doesn’t belong to AAA anymore, and finding fellow video game industry veterans who understand this is an exciting proposition. Trendy has some of the brightest, most capable developers in the industry who have created a platform that enables other independent developers to expand upon and create games they otherwise could not. I am thrilled to be joining the team to help them realize their vision.”
With nearly twenty years of experience as a leader in interactive and entertainment media, Darrell Rodriguez has brought his acumen for efficient, results-driven production and business strategies to some of the biggest creative enterprises in gaming. As president of LucasArts, Rodriguez cultivated the growth of its most beloved properties, spearheading titles like Star Wars: The Old Republic, Star Wars: The Force Unleashed, the company’s most successful game launch in three decades, as well as fan-favorite The Secret of Monkey Island: Special Edition. Prior to this, Rodriguez managed development and administration of titles within the Medal of Honor, Command & Conquer, SSX, NBA Street, FIFA Street and Marvel franchises as Chief Operating Officer of EA Los Angeles and Assistant Chief Operating Officer of EA Canada. He joins Trendy after serving as Chief Creative Officer at International Game Technology, the world’s largest creator of casino games.
“Determining ways to deliver big-budget experiences that don’t break budgets has been the cornerstone of Darrell’s career,” explained Trendy Entertainment’s chairman of the board, Augi Lye. “His record speaks to the importance of crafting deep, varied portfolios in this hits-driven business – both in terms of gameplay and distribution. This expertise will be invaluable to the projects we have planned for our player and developer communities.”
“A central pillar of Trendy’s mission is fostering a spirit of engagement and cooperation with our audience and our peers,” Mr. Rodriguez stressed. “Given our work on playverse, a multifaceted toolkit designed “for devs by devs”, our real test going forward will be not only how well we do for ourselves, but how well we empower other like-minded developers to unlock their own potential and nurture their own visions. It’s a richer set of responsibilities to take on as an executive, and I’m looking forward to it.”
Dungeon Defenders II is currently in development for PC, Mac & Linux and is scheduled to soft launch later this year. To join the community and help influence the game, check out www.DungeonDefenders2.com, create a forum account, and start commenting! You can also participate on Facebook (www.Facebook.com/DungeonDefenders) or by sending Trendy a message on Twitter (@TrendyEnt).
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