The recent turbulence at Crytek has spurred the birth of another new studio, with a group of former Crytek USA developers founding a new indie studio in Austin Tx called Gunfire Games
Gunfire Games CEO David Adams was the founder of Vigil Games, the studio that developed the critically acclaimed Darksiders and Darksiders 2 as a subsidiary of THQ, and was sadly left without a bid at the defunct publisher's bankruptcy auction. In the days after that auction, Crytek signed the team on as its new Crytek USA studio, where they had been working on a new game titled Hunt: Horrors of the Gilded Age.
The recent turbulence at Crytek that saw developers pay being delayed and the subsequent transfer of Crytek UK looks to have prompted Adams and a core group of the former Vigil team to strike out on their own. Speaking with Polygon
, Adams and Gunfire studio director Matt Guzenda offer further insight into the situation:
Gunfire Games, said studio director Matt Guzenda, is just getting off the ground with a handful of people.
"We have seven people, all of the leads at Crytek USA," he said. "We're still working on the next round of guys coming around."
And he's not yet sure how many of the team they'll be able to save. Crytek USA was once 45 people strong, but had slimmed down to a couple of dozen by the time Guzenda and Adams left.
They dwelled on their decision to leave Crytek because they had spent much of their time at the publisher building up an entirely new game: Hunt: Horrors of the Gilded Age, a free-to-play cooperative shooter that Guzenda said leaned heavily on the sort of gameplay Vigil is known for.
"I think that was the reason it took us so long to make that decision," he said. "It was the right decision to make. But we had to decide if we wanted to walk away from [Hunt]."
Adams said the decision to leave a game that wasn't done was a hard one.
"It was an intense mix of emotions," he said. "It's very hard to walk away from a project you invested a ton of time into."
The Polgyon interview notes that the team has potential plans that include one original idea, and work on one established IP. Whether that original IP is Darksiders is unlcear, but Adams has confirmed that they have at least spoken to Nordic Games (the publisher that acquired the Darksiders rights during the THQ fire sale) about the logistics of that possibility.