Joel Breton

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Joel Breton
Joel Breton at the FlashGamingSummit2.JPG
Joel Breton speaking at Flash Gaming Summit 2010
Born Joel Maximilian Breton
(1971-09-26) September 26, 1971 (age 44)
Occupation Video game producer, Video game designer, professor of game design

Joel Maximilian Breton (born 1971) is an international video game producer, video game designer, professor of game design, D.J. and entrepreneur. Joel is also known as an international super producer[1] and he is best known for producing award winning video games including Bomberman Live,[2] Unreal,[3] Duke Nukem,[3] Potty Racers, and Pirates of the Caribbean.[3] Breton is also a professor of social game design at The Games Academy, where he teaches courses that focus on the key topics of compulsion loops, free-to-play game monetization, and social game virality.[4]

Breton is a video game industry veteran who began his career in 1993 when he produced the Mortal Kombat World Championship at the Cow Palace in San Francisco. Since then he has produced, designed and created more than 30 video games across 22 console platforms.[5] He has also created more than 100 online games that have been played billions of times at AddictingGames and across the web.[6]

Joel's first role as a video game producer was for GT Interactive, where he produced Duke Nukem,[3] Anno 1602,[3] Unreal,[7] the original Unreal Engine, and Doom,[7] along with several other video games. While at GT, Breton successfully green-lit and launched the development cycle for No One Lives Forever until the game was passed on to Fox Interactive when GT was sold to Infogrames in 1999.

Breton produced several games for Bethesda Softworks, a game publisher based in Bethesda, Maryland. He produced Sea Dogs,[3] Echelon,[3] and IHRA Drag Racing,[3] while serving as Producer and Studio Head of Bethesda West Studios in Olympia, Washington.

Joel then moved to Moscow, Russia, to create and manage Bethesda's European development operations. While stationed in Moscow, he produced Pirates of the Caribbean[3] for the Xbox which was the first U.S. console game developed in Russia.[8] During his time in Moscow, Joel wrote a string of blog entries under the pseudonym fat cosmonaut detailing his adventures directing Russian game development in Moscow.

Breton founded the game development company Kozmo Games to develop casual games for the global market. Kozmo Games has since developed and released Ice Cream Tycoon[9] and War Chess[9] for the casual game market.

Breton returned to California in 2005 where he joined Take Two Interactive and produced World Poker Tour for the PS2, PlayStation Portable, Xbox, and Game Boy Advance platforms. He also produced Amped 3,[3] a launch title for the Xbox 360. He led the Major League Baseball 2K6 team and produced the PlayStation Portable version of the exclusive Major League Baseball game which was released in Spring of 2006.

Joel began working as a Senior Producer with Hudson Entertainment in 2006 and produced Bomberman Live[3] among several other console titles for the U.S. division of Hudson Soft.[10]

From 2007 until 2010 Joel held the position of Director of Content for, MTV Network's leading website[11] with more than 30 million monthly visitors.[12] During that time he established the site as an original game IP factory, creating and launching more than 100 original game franchises and publishing more than 800 new games on the site.[13]

Joel is a frequent speaker at game industry conventions and he represented MTV Networks and AddictingGames by speaking at the Casual Connect conference in Kiev in 2008.[8] Joel was a speaker and on the steering committee for the Flash Gaming Summit in 2009,[14] at Casual Connect Seattle 2010,[5] and Flash Gaming Summit 2010.[15]

Breton also pioneered the production of viral news games and he designed and created more than 10 viral news games that were each played millions of times.[16] Hero On The Hudson[17] was one of the first viral news games[18] he launched, celebrating the heroism of Captain Sully Sullenburger's perfect plane landing on the Hudson River. Oiligarchy,[19] was another viral news game which examined the oil industry for the first time in a video game. Joel and his team at AddictingGames also produced Where's the Naughty Governor,[20] a news game that was highlighted by the LA Times in the article "Web games, ripped from the healdines".[16]

In August 2010, Joel was appointed Executive Vice President of North America for Zattikka Ltd.,[21] a social game company[22] focused on the high growth platforms of social, mobile and online games.[23]

Joel is a professor of social game design at The Games Academy in San Francisco, California. He teaches courses on successful social game design and focuses on key topics such as core compulsion loops, free-to-play game monetization, and social game virality.[24]


Sega of America[edit]

Joel began his video game career at Sega in 1994 where he worked in the Product Development division on many of SEGA’s classic games including Sonic and Knuckles,[3] Virtua Fighter,[3] Virtua Racer,[3] Panzer Dragoon,[25] Nightmare Circus,[3] & World Series Baseball.[25] During his time at Sega, Joel worked on games that were published across seven console platforms including – Genesis, CD, Game Gear, 32X, Pico, Saturn, and Nomad.

Headgames Inc.[edit]

Breton then joined Headgames, a game development company in San Francisco where he worked as a designer on Killwheel and Sirens for the PC and PlayStation platforms.

GT Interactive[edit]

In 1997, Joel moved to GT Interactive and began producing front-line games for the powerhouse PC game publisher. He produced several blockbuster first-person shooting (FPS) games during his three years at GT Interactive including, Duke Nukem,[7] Unreal,[7] Blood 2.[25] During his time at GT Interactive, Breton also produced Anno 1602,[25] Baseball Mogul,[25] and Deer Hunter.[25]

Bethesda Softworks[edit]

Breton was hired as Game Producer and later promoted to Studio Head for Bethesda Softworks in Olympia, Washington. While managing the game development teams at Bethesda West, he completed and released online racing games Burnout and IHRA Drag Racing[25] for the PC and PlayStation platforms. Joel then moved to Russia to establish Bethesda Softworks East in the heart of Moscow. While stationed in Russia he first established relations with the leading Russian game development studios and signed contracts with the top teams to develop AAA games for Bethesda Softworks to publish globally. During his 3 years in Russia, Breton produced Pirates of the Caribbean (video game)[7] on the Xbox - the first U.S. console game developed in Russia.[8]

Kozmo Games[edit]

Breton founded the game development company Kozmo Games in 2004, to develop casual games for the global market. Kozmo Games developed and released Ice Cream Tycoon[9] and War Chess[9] for the casual game market.

Take-Two Interactive[edit]

In 2005, Breton joined Take Two Interactive where he was the External Producer for 2K Sports. During his time there he produced World Poker Tour,[25] Major League Baseball 2k6,[25] and Amped 3[7] which was an Xbox 360 launch title.

Hudson Entertainment[edit]

Joel then joined Hudson Entertainment, the US division of Hudson Soft, the storied Japanese game publisher. While at Hudson he focused on creating the highest rated version of Bomberman for the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 console platforms.[26] Joel worked closely with the North American development team and the Japanese Hudson Soft team to create Bomberman Live[7]—the highest rated and top selling version of Bomberman released in the US market. He also produced several other console and mobile games while at Hudson Entertainment, including Bonk’s Adventure, Diner Dash, and Military Madness. /MTV Networks[edit]

In 2007, Breton joined MTV Networks as Director of Content for, and helped to grow the site to become the number one game site in the U.S. in terms of unique monthly visitors.[27] During his three years at AddictingGames, he was responsible for the development and release of more than one hundred games that have been played billions of times at AddictingGames[6] and around the web. Breton was also in charge of creating new IP and game franchises for AddictingGames. He worked with development teams to create many of the top online game franchises including—Sniper Assassin, The Heist, Bad Boys, Moto Rush, and Stick Hero. While at AddictingGames, he was responsible for the site’s game development, licensing, sponsorship, publishing, and promotion. Breton was also responsible for licensing hit game franchises to be published across platforms including online, social networks, iPhone, iPod, iPad, Android, and other mobile platforms.



  1. ^ Bomberman live developer interview "xbox domain"
  2. ^ Bomberman live sweeps Xbox Live Awards 2007 "gamers hell"
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o Joel Breton bio on Moby Games "Moby Games"
  4. ^ The Games Academy Instructors The Games Academy Instructors
  5. ^ a b Virtual Goods Get Addicting on AddictingGames "Casual Connect Speakers"
  6. ^ a b Joel Breton gets Zattikka EVP Position "GamesmediaPro"
  7. ^ a b c d e f g Joel Breton bio at IMDBIMDB
  8. ^ a b c How To Develop Blockbuster Online Games Casual Connect Kiev 2008
  9. ^ a b c d Kozmo Games Kozmo Games
  10. ^ Bomberman Live in early july 800 points "joystiq"
  11. ^ Joel Breton speaker bio "Casual Connect Kiev 2008
  12. ^ Joel Breton speaker bio 2010 "Flash Gaming Summit"
  13. ^ Joel Breton speaker bio 2009 "Flash Gaming Summit"
  14. ^ Flash Gaming Summit 2009 Steering Committee Flash Gaming Summit
  15. ^ Flash Game Summit 2010 SpeakersFlash Game Summit 2010
  16. ^ a b Web games, ripped from the headlines "LA Times"
  17. ^ Hero on the Hudson at "AddictingGames"
  18. ^ Hero of the Hudson Videogame "Hero on the Hudson video game at FoxNews"
  19. ^ Oiligarchy at "AddictingGames"
  20. ^ Where's The Naughty Governor at "AddictingGames"
  21. ^ Joel Breton gets Zattikka EVP positionGamesmediapro.
  22. ^ Zattikka's New US RepresentativeInside Social Games.
  23. ^ Joel Breton appointed Zattikka EVP positionIGN.
  24. ^ The Games Academy The Games Academy
  25. ^ a b c d e f g h i Joel Breton at GiantbombGiantBomb
  26. ^ Metacritic Bomberman LiveMetacritic Bomberman Live
  27. ^ comScore "comScore June 2010"

External links[edit]