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Media Molecule spent £4.1m on R&D in 2010

Financial documents identify "heavy reliance" on LBP as main business risk

Financial reports filed at Companies House by Media Molecule reveal that the Sony-owned studio made £3.44 million in profit in the financial year ended March 2011, but spent £4.1 million of research and development costs in that same period.

Despite the success of the LittleBigPlanet series and its status as a Sony flagship product, the report repeats previous statements that the company needs to maintain cutting edge innovation at the studio instead of relying too heavily on established franchises.

Major risks at the studio are seen "largely as a result of the company's heavy reliance on the one LittleBigPlanet brand name," reports Develop.

"It is vital for Media Molecule to focus a high proportion of its resources on R&D to allow it to maintain its world leading position as a developer of innovative games," the report continues, before stressing that Media Molecule "remain at the forefront of technological advances, and must bring new and often risky innovations to market in products of the highest quality."

Being a first-party studio obviously means that Media Molecule can expect early access to new technologies such as the PlayStation Vita and whichever platform eventually replaces the PlayStation 3, so preparation for the new developmental and technological opportunities which they present will be paramount.

Areas highlighted in the report as being key parts of the research were: "leading edge physics and dynamics, rapid world creation from laser data, innovative routes to market via web based interfaces, 3D stereo-optics for advanced simulation, and use of 'hi-def' data capture and processing techniques."

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Dan Pearson avatar

Dan Pearson