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Last Friday, Perfect Dark developer The Initiative announced that it has hired Tomb Raider and Marvel’s Avengers maker Crystal Dynamics to work on the upcoming reboot. The news was a little surprising, particularly as Perfect Dark is first-party project from a new team established specifically to reboot it.
According to a GamesBeat report, however, the reason behind this seemingly unlikely partnership is not hard to understand. The Initiative is reportedly ready to ramp up production on Perfect Dark, after years of prototyping.
Unfortunately, the team simply isn’t large enough to support this endeavour. Working on the ambitious game has also slowed down under the pandemic, and made it more difficult for The Initiative to hire the right people to get it done.
Bringing in a support studio to assist with development duties has always been an option, according to the report. The Initiative studio head, Darrell Gallagher – himself ex-Crystal Dynamics – maintained good connections with his former home. And, knowing what the studio can do, ultimately lead him to set the wheels in motion.
On Microsoft’s end, the move is also seen as fairly standard. The company regularly hires support studios, both independent and owned by third-party publishers, to contribute to its projects. Halo: The Master Chief Collection, and the recent Gears of War games relied on a lot of work by other teams.
Indeed, the upcoming Age of Empires 4 was co-developed by Sega-owned Relic. Microsoft even enlisted the help of another Sega studio, Creative Assembly, to develop Halo Wars 2.
Perfect Dark does not yet have a release date, but you probably shouldn’t expect it anytime soon.