Chronicles of Riddick
and The Darkness
developer Starbreeze said this week that it canceled development of one of two games it had been working on with publisher EA.
"We will continue to focus only on a big production [title] together with EA," said Starbreeze CEO Johan Kristiansson in a statement released Monday. "Our relationship with EA is stronger than ever, and the aim now is to spend more resources on the game that demonstrated the greatest potential. This game is already in full production." The studio said that the canceled game was in the pre-production phase.
Electronic Arts had two known works in progress with Uppsala, Sweden-based Starbreeze. One was the codenamed Project RedLime, which aimed to "reinvent one of EA’s most acclaimed classic franchises
." When the deal emerged in February 2008, speculation rose that RedLime is actually a revival of Syndicate
, although EA did not reveal a specific franchise.
In February 2009, EA said that it acquired
the exclusive worldwide license to create games based on author Robert Ludlum's Jason Bourne character. Starbreeze was signed by EA to create a Bourne game based on Ludlum's work.
Taking into consideration the flailing popularity of the Matt Damon-starring Bourne movies, and the fact that the canceled game was in pre-production, it's likely that the more mature RedLime project is still going ahead, while the younger Bourne project was canceled.
Starbreeze also said that is in talks with a few other game publishers about unnamed "potential new projects." The studio, which has been around since 1998, employs around 115 workers. Starbreeze said it doesn't anticipate having to "make any significant change in the number of employees related to these projects."
Starbreeze's most recent game was last year's Chronicles of Riddick: Assault on Dark Athena
for Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC. The game was a current-gen remake of 2004's Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay
, plus new content set on a mercenary ship called Dark Athena.