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PlayStation Studios has added UK-based developer Firesprite to its growing list of internal studios. In an interview with GamesIndustry.biz, Head of PlayStation Studios Hermen Hulst said the developer is already creating a “few great exclusive game projects that we’re working on together.” However, he also said these projects may not be created exclusively for PlayStation VR.
Firesprite may not be a name familiar to many players but they have a storied history with PlayStation. The studio previously collaborated with Team Asobi for The Playroom and The Playroom VR, as well as creating Run Sackboy! Run on the PlayStation Vita. Sony then supported the studio as they created their own survival horror IP The Persistence, which began life on PSVR before heading for a conventional console release too. Firesprite was founded by members of Sony’s Studio Liverpool who worked on several titles within the WipeOut franchise before the studio’s closure in 2012.
Hulst said Firesprite’s experimental approach to game development and entrepreneurial spirit was “a great foundation for us to collaborate on the few great exclusive game projects that we’re working on together.” They’re not here to support other studios but to “lead the development of several game projects” instead. Firesprite’s Managing Director Graeme Ankers confirmed they would be offering “some truly unique experiences,” but neither could talk any more specifics about those projects just yet.
Despite their expertise with PlayStation VR, the studio hasn’t “necessarily” been brought on board to work on titles for PSVR2. When asked whether or not that was the reason for the acquisition, Hulst said:
Not necessarily. Clearly the expertise that Firesprite has gained on their work with The Persistence and The Playroom is something that they bring to the table. It’s too early to talk about what specific platforms or experiences that we’re going to collaborate on with Firesprite. But that experience is very valuable.
Ankers did suggest their projects would be “beautiful, amazing universes that players are going to enjoy for years to come” but that’s all we’ll learn for now. Previous job listings hinted at two different game projects, one a “game-changing huge multiplayer shooter” and the other “an ambitious dark narrative blockbuster adventure,” although it’s unclear if either of those is still in development. Whatever the studio produces, Hulst mentioned the “experiences that you can expect will be quite different from the teams that you are familiar with at PlayStation Studios”.
Firesprite is the third studio to be acquired by Sony this year following Housemarque and Nixxes Software in June and July respectively. We’ll just have to wait and see what any of these collaborations produce in the future.