A2M reverts to former name - Behaviour
Montreal-based developer now working on contracted and original projects in-house
Montreal-based development house Artificial Mind & Movement has announced that it has changed its name back to Behaviour, as it looks to raise its profile both with the industry and consumers.
The new brand was also the original name of the company - which now employs 375 - but changed name following a change of ownership in 2000, although the name has since became available once again.
"We've been known for ever to be a work-for-hire shop - B2B - so our name was never important in the consumer's mind," explained CEO Remi Racine to GamesIndustry.biz. "A few years ago, when we started to work on Wet and Naughty Bear, plus a few of our own IPs, our name has become more public, so we decided about a year ago that our previous name wasn't very sexy to be a public brand.
"Everybody internally - even those who weren't here when we were Behaviour before - has been talking about going back to that name. It's a very good name and everybody locally has a good memory of that brand."
The shift in identity is also a sign of the times, he explained.
"The business won't change that much, but I think that as the market changes the developers will become more important than they used to be," he said.
"Right now we're working on other brands, but when you're building services and the market is changing from packaged goods to that service model, I think our name becomes more important - and also the fact that we're going to build more of our own IP."
Racine noted that the company was working on both boxed and digital products of its own, and would work with traditional publishers for the former but could publish online products itself in the future.
Montreal now houses a thriving development community, with key studios from major publishers recently joined by the newly-announced THQ super-studio - something which Racine has mixed feelings about.
"Some days I see them as competitors, some days I see them as partners," he explained. "Sometimes we work with them on projects, and sometimes we compete for the resources. They're all competitors between themselves; I'm in the middle as an independent.
"In the next year I could work with three of them - we have potential work there with Montreal studios," he added. "I think everybody gets along pretty well."
In total, Behaviour has five different studios working on 14 separate games, taking in the whole range of platforms, from console to social networking.