THQ has announced the formation of XDG, an external outsourcing team specifically established to streamline the company's future product development outsourcing needs.
Jack Sorensen, EVP of THQ's worldwide studios, commented: "Our ultimate goal for XDG is to increase our production capabilities and cost efficiency across the entire studio system. We're confident that XDG (External Development Group) will function as an extremely valuable resource allowing our core teams to focus on delivering the innovative gameplay consumers will expect from the next-generation systems."
According to a company statement, the new team will be headed up by Shiraz Akmal, former director of research and development at the company's Heavy Iron development studio.
The move cements recent reports that more and more companies will be turning to outsourcing as a means of reducing escalating development costs, particularly through the need for increased art and high definition requirements for the new platforms. A recent Screen Digest report estimates that the number of game companies using outsourcing will increase rapidly from approximately sixty per cent, to almost ninety per cent over the next couple of years.