Crackdown 3 Developer Acquires TheChineseRoom

Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture developer outlines future game plans, along with teasing “something bigger”.

Posted By | On 14th, Aug. 2018 Under News

Remember TheChineseRoom, better known for creating games like Dear Esther, Amnesia: A Machine for Pigs and Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture? It’s recently been acquired by Sumo Digital, which is currently developing Crackdown 3 for the Xbox One and Windows 10 PC. The announcement is shocking, considering TheChineseRoom “went dark” with all staff laid off in September 2017.

A blog post from TheChineseRoom co-founder Dan Pinchbeck revealed the news today. “Following the studio’s closure in summer 2017, we were faced with a decision,” the post read. “We knew we didn’t want to just start over, trying to recapture a time in our history where we could push out arthouse titles and survive the process. It was an amazing few years, but it came at a cost, one that I knew I wasn’t about to take on again. And it was time for a change—to make different games, explore new ideas and, if TCR was going to reboot, to evolve into something that opened up new opportunities.”

Pinchbeck revealed that some concepts which were never developed by the studio are still “very much on the table”. These include titles like The 13th Interior, which Pinchbeck and Andrew Crawshaw (designer of Everybody’s Gone to the Rapture) created a prototype for.

“The game still needs a little bit of work to nail down some core mechanics, but then it’s finding the right opportunity to roll out the rest of development. It’s very much still in the plan to finish it up at some point. There were also two other concepts we were playing around with—very different types of games for us—and they will remain gently percolating in the background,” said Pinchbeck.

Another project, So Let Us Melt, which was in development for VR platform Google Daydream, may also be revisited. “Injecting more mechanics, building on the gorgeous art and audio the old team created and getting it out to a wider audience,” are the current plans, so there’s a chance that it could arrive on other platforms.

Of course, Sumo Digital is also working on a new game with Pinchbeck, which will be bigger than the previously mentioned titles. “It’s exciting times. A fresh start. If this was a game script, a gravelly-voiced man would probably say something about a ‘new dawn’.”

What are your thoughts on TheChineseRoom being brought back and acquired by Sumo Digital? How will this affect the latter’s future, especially after Crackdown 3 has wrapped? What could the “bigger” title be? For now, all we can do is speculate, so let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

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