PopCap stops its designers' heads exploding with launch of experimental label 4th & Battery

First game will be Unpleasant Horse for iPhone

PopCap stops its designers' heads exploding with launch of experimental label 4th & Battery
Renown for its attention to detail and 'not done until it's done' attitude, the one thing PopCap could be criticised for is lacking a playful attitude to game development.

Well, not any more.

It's just announced 4th & Battery, an experimental label where its designers and developers have free reign to create smaller, simpler, and (sometimes) edgier games.

Don't tell mum

"4th & Battery is a pressure valve intended to keep our heads from exploding," explained Ed Allard, PopCap's executive vice president of studios

"The PopCap brand has become closely associated with ultra-high quality, polish and attention to detail - which is a great thing. But our standard game development process is therefore long and involved, and doesn't really accommodate all of the creativity pumping through our collective veins.

"4th & Battery gives us a way to quickly try really strange or marginal ideas, and to give our designers a safe area to hone their chops."

The first label release will be Unpleasant Horse.

In this free iPhone title, players will take on the role of a 'strikingly unpleasant flying horse' who advances through the game by destroying small birds and landing on more pleasant horses from above, forcing them into a perpetual meat grinder for extra points and special bonuses.

4th & Battery - the name comes from a Seattle intersection - is expected to produce several smallscale arcade-style games annually, for platforms ranging from PC to Facebook and iPhone.

[source: PopCap]
Contributing Editor

A Pocket Gamer co-founder, Jon is Contributing Editor at which means he acts like a slightly confused uncle who's forgotten where he's left his glasses. As well as letters and cameras, he likes imaginary numbers and legumes.