In a ‘Rare’ turn of events, Crytek is permitting their UK division to return to their ‘Free Radical Design’ roots
Did E3 come early this year? Early this morning, Nintendo held a Japan-only Chotto Direct followed by a Nintendo Direct exclusive to Europe later in the afternoon, both revealing two new plasma-sized collaborations.
First, after having sprawling success with the release of Puzzle & Dragons Z for the Nintendo 3DS, moving over 500,000 units in the first 3 days on the market and 1,399,320 as of March 9, 2014, GungHo has agreed to team up with Nintendo to develop an unspecified amount of exclusive Nintendo 3DS and “GamePad-centric” Wii U titles. In doing this, Nintendo President and CEO Satoru Iwata says that he hopes to revive the the state of the console industry in Japan, and what better way to do this than by partnering up with one of the key players in the Japan gaming scene?
“GungHo Online Entertainment, Inc. (“GungHo”) (headquartered in Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo, Japan) is pleased to announce details of an exclusive partnership with Nintendo of America Inc. and Nintendo of Europe GmbH for future projects from GungHo on Wii U and Nintendo 3DS,” said Representative Director, President and CEO Kazuki Morishita.“Amid the new agreement, we hope to collaborate to make Wii U the number one destination for next-generation caliber tablet-controller gaming experiences as well as to give gamers in Japan a reason to enjoy console gaming once more. We will unveil the projects we are working on sequentially at a later date.”
“Puzzle & Dragons Z’s performance on Nintendo’s handheld system has led us to believe that our future games can be a natural fit for Nintendo’s latest handheld and home console platforms.” Morishita continued. “The Wii U and Nintendo 3DS are ideal platforms to showcase our games and we are looking forward to working with Nintendo on our next exciting endeavors.”
The second announcement fully unveils what Crytek and Nintendo have been keeping under wrap. After being rumored to be exclusive for Nintendo’s Wii home console, the game was promptly put on hold after Free Radical Design went into administration. After the studio was picked up by Crytek and renamed Crytek UK, the development studio began talks with publishers on the possibility of a new TimeSplitters, one of the those publishers as we now realize was Nintendo. Fast forward to 2011, and news broke out that the game would be announced soon. 2012 rolled around and marked the year of positive intentions to develop for the Wii U. First, there was a report about a Crytek employee moving over to Nintendo. This was followed up by Crytek producer Peter Holzapfel stating that they’d love to work on a new TimeSplittlers. After that, Crytek CEO Cevat Yerli stated his opinion of Wii U was very high and confirmed that it ran their latest engine “beautifully”. He went on to hint a new “great” looking game “from a respected developer”. A few days later, we had Crytek’s Mike Read saying “we are working with Nintendo, and that’s about all I can say on that front.” Then came the announcement of the next CryEngine for Wii U and finally today’s official announcement, TimeSplitter’s 4 exclusively for Wii U.
“Over the years, we’ve struck deals with many console partners, with Microsoft Corporation being being our most recent,” Crytek CEO Cevat Yerli started off in this morning European Nintendo Direct. “Never before, however, have we dealt with Nintendo. What has brought Crytek and Nintendo together is a breakthrough in our relationship based on the technology it’s latest home console platform delivers as well as a sense of familiarity from Crytek UK, especially after having worked on Nintendo platforms since the team’s days as developers at Rare. In addition to beautiful high-definition graphics, Wii U also brings new gameplay opportunities thanks to it’s cleverly designed tablet controller. Imagine a shooter, like TimeSplitters, with jaw-dropping graphics and smooth character animations from CryEngine brought to you on a Nintendo system with that breakthrough controller. Now imagine those games with an open, online functionality that allows you to download new content, find matches, compete on leaderboards, and participate in a global community via the Nintendo Network and Miiverse. Nintendo’s latest home console has tons of game changing potential and Crytek hopes to be one of the first partners to eek it out, starting with TimeSplitters 4, exclusively for the Wii U.”
“Crytek UK will be heading up development of the game, taking the first person shooter genre to gaming nirvana. More about the game will be revealed soon, but for now, we can tell you that it will feature even more crazy characters, devastating weapons and heart pounding hot sweaty action.”
Exciting times await Wii U owners. To tide yourselves over, Crytek has released a teaser trailer for the game. Check it out below: