If Vox is betting that gaming is a large audience, it’s probably right. In the past, the company has shown no appetite for nibbling at the edges of a topic but instead prefers to go all-in with a big investment in staff and with its Cadillac platform known as Chorus (at paidContent 2012, CEO Jim Bankoff compared the platform to Lucas Films studios which George Lucas created in order to make Star Wars possible). Vox used this “go big” approach with The Verge which, in less than a year, has become a dominant force in tech reporting.
Polygon managing editor Justin McElroy says the site also hopes to attract non-gamer readers with “people centric” stories. These include the tale of a couple who got married after meeting in a game video or, more darkly, a game developer who let his profession wreck his relationship.
Polygon is certainly thinking big, but who will pay for its fancy new canvas? COO Marty Moe says the site has already attracted premium advertisers from inside and outside the industry — Sony, Microsoft, Geico and so on. And as is the norm with media properties these days, Moe says Polygon also expects substantial revenue from off-line activities (read events).
The Polygon launch means Vox now possesses mega-properties in three fields: tech, sports (SB Nation) and now gaming. This raises the question of whether Vox will use its formidable resources to scoop up another news domain such as health, fashion or food. In our phone interview, Moe said its existing three coverage areas were vast in themselves and left the company with plenty of room to grow — no new properties soon, in other words. He also said Vox has no plans to license its prized platform.