The fate of Prey 2 is still swimming in a murky grey area, and the uncertainty around the game has only fuelled intrigue. The latest development in the enigmatic game's tale comes by way of Kotaku
, who have published some alleged internal emails from Arkane studios that suggest the Dishonored developer has indeed taken on some form of the troubled sci-fi sequel.
Based on their purported insider information, Kotaku has run with a questionably confident conclusion that Arkane Studio's Austin office is now working on a reboot of Prey 2, having deduced that it is the systems-driven shooter the developers have been describing as their unannounced future project. The official line from Bethesda however, has been to deny any Arkane and Prey 2 connection.
Based on the evidence available, and the secrecy of the parties involved, it seems more reasonable to conclude that there are probably outstanding legal matters between publisher Bethesda and original Prey 2 developer Human Head that have necessitated the silence. Our own punt on the matter -- all purely conjecture, mind -- is that Arkane's mystery project is a hedge by Bethesda on the uncertain outcome of a rights dispute with Human Head over the Prey 2 contract. In this completely speculative scenario, a new sci-fi first person action game that Arkane is developing could either be created as Prey 2, or rebranded to something else, depending on how the Human Head Studios situation is eventually resolved, and would explain their ambiguous non-confirmations.
After a long history of publishing titles created by third party studios, Bethesda has only recently refined their operation to where all of the games that they have currently announced -- The Elder Scrolls Online, Wolfenstein: The New Order, The Evil Within, and Doom 4, are all in development at in-house subsidiary studios. The publisher is said to be in a healthy position financially due to the wild success of Skyrim in particular, which has allowed it to get by without a single release in 2013, having delayed both Wolfenstein and The Elder Scrolls Online into 2014 in pursuit of a higher bar of quality.
Prey 2 had been looking mightily impressive the last time we saw it
, so we would hope that all of the effort invested in it so far, by all involved, hasn't all been for nought.