Now he’s set to helm Netflix’s fifth studio, which will be located in Southern California.
The news was announced by Netflix’s vice president of games Mike Verdu during a discussion at the ongoing TechCrunch Disrupt event.
After discussing the company’s announcement last month that it was opening a studio in Helsinki, Verdu revealed the details of the California studio.
“We are starting another organic new studio in Southern California, this time around Chacko Sonny, who oversaw production on God of War Ascenion for Santa Monica and oversaw a portofilo of their games, and then was executive producer of a little game franchise called Overwatch,” Verdu confirmed.
“He could have gone anywhere, he could have raised money, he could have done anything and he chose to come here. We are building a team around him and looking to him to reinvent what games can be.”
Explaining how Sonny’s hiring was evidence of Netflix’s ongoing commitment to making games, Verdu added: “You don’t get people like that coming to your organisation to build the next big thing in gaming unless there’s a sense that we’re in it for the long haul and the right reasons.”
Verdu also noted that Netflix still planned to feature third-party games on its service. “I think you need both,” he explained. “You need to harness the incredible creative firepower of the global gaming ecosystem, and so our external games pillar is as important as our internal games.
“But with internal games, we want to build institutional competence. We want teams to go through multiple cycles together and essentially get really, really good at working together and delivering great products, and sometimes the only way you can do that is to give them the space inside of the organisation.”
Netflix announced last month that it had established a studio in Helsinki, Finland, led by former Zynga Helsinki general manager Marko Lastikka.
However, to date these titles have been created by external companies or ones that it has acquired, such as Oxenfree creator Night School Studio.
Announcing the creation of the Helsinki studio, Netflix’s games boss Amir Rahimi said: “This is another step in our vision to build a world-class games studio that will bring a variety of delightful and deeply engaging original games — with no ads and no in-app purchases — to our hundreds of millions of members around the world.”