Codemasters to employ the former Evolution Studios Dev team
Lats month, Sony Entertainment closed down Evolution Studios, who you may know as the British studio that was responsible for console hits such as the Motorstorm games and Drive Club. Sony did disperse a small part of the dev team to other in-house studios, but the majority of the Evolution Studios team remained unemployed.
Codemasters who just celebrated its 30th birthday has now announced that on April 25, it will employ the remaining former Evolution Studios dev team to work on future Codemasters products. It is reported that most of the employees have accepted the job offer. Because all these employees were already laid off, Codemasters will not have to compensate Sony for the takeover.
The rights of the games formerly created by Evolution Studios remain in the hands of Sony. It can be said that this merger will turn Codemasters into the world’s largest racing-focused games company. Furthermore, co-founder of Evolution Studios, Mick Hocking will be taking the position of VP Product Development at Codemasters which will make him responsible for all of the company’s studios including the addition of the now multi-platform Evolution team in Cheshire.
At this point in time, it is not clear what the former Evolution Studios team is going to develop for Codemasters, but since both Codemasters and Evolution Studios have formerly created some of the most successful racing franchises to date, the future products will most likely be racing flavoured.
It is safe to say that with the success of the official F1 game franchise, and the highly successful DIRT Rally game/sim, The Codies have found their second youth and just might have some future surprises up its sleeve. It is rumored that the new team will have the chance to develop a new game engine, and with the experience of the newly acquired employees, it might lead to a new level of graphics quality for Codemasters products.
As we know, the Drive Club game engine is already capable achieving a mind-boggling level of visual detail and includes one of the best dynamic weather engines to date. This joined expertise can only lead to better Codemasters releases.
Codies CEO Frank Sagnier has said of the union, “The success of F1 2015 and DiRT Rally over the last 12 months has re-positioned the company for growth. The addition of the Evolution team to our studio group will allow us to scale our business and strengthen our leadership as the world’s premier racing game developer. I’m thrilled to have Mick Hocking join Codemasters as VP of Product Development. His experience in building AAA IP and leading great teams made him a natural choice to head the development of all of our products. I am equally thrilled to welcome his talented team to the Codemasters family and I look forward to the great games and brand new IP we will develop together.”
Mick Hocking added, “I’m delighted to be joining Codemasters at such an exciting time in the company’s growth. We have a shared passion for racing, a desire to innovate and a determination to create the best racing games and build the biggest racing community in the market. I’m very much looking forward to working with so many of the world’s greatest racing developers, on new IP as well as exciting franchises including DiRT, GRID, Micro Machines and the FORMULA ONE games.”
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