Consider this a public service announcement big enough for Flint, Gung-Ho and Alpine to host: G.I. Joe, one of the longest-running comic and cartoon series in the United States, appears to be finally about to make a major return to console video games.
Magic: The Gathering creators Wizards of the Coast are creating a new game in the franchise with former WB Games developers, the first project for a new, yet unnamed triple-A studio. As listed in multiple jobs on your career page, the company seeks to fill positions in the development house, currently called “New Raleigh-Durham Studio”, for a multiplatform third-person action game set “in the universe of GI Joe”.
Wizards, a division of Hasbro (which also owns the G.I. Joee), claims that the developer is led by seasoned former employees of WB Games and other major studios, although listings suggest that it is still recruiting for some high-level positions, including lead game designer and art director.
While none of the listings go into too much detail, the game’s lead designer’s announcement mentions that candidates need experience with the Unreal Engine, while, perhaps most interestingly, the art director’s page mentions “the opportunity to help redefine a dear IP. “
A reason to be optimistic about this mockery G.I. Joe The game stems from recent efforts by Wizards to branch out into the triple-A space with their own properties. The company launched Dungeons & Dragons: Dark Alliance earlier this year, it received moderate reviews, but showed promise in its design and production value rather than feeling like a cheap mobile port.
Hasbro announced its intentions to develop digital games for several of its properties in a investor event in February. This, combined with the opening of a new triple-A study scale, suggests that the company G.I. Joe A more serious name than it has in some time, which should be a no-brainer to fill the relative void of E-10 rated action games.
True American Zero?
the G.I. Joe The brand could also use a reboot due to its latest media glitches. This summer theatrical spin-off Snake Eyes sunk at the box office with pandemic issues. Meanwhile, last year’s third-person shooter Operation GI Joe Blackout, who sported a cel-shaded, Fortnite-That look, it was not much better. The beloved comic book and cartoon series has been relegated primarily to smartphone games for the past decade, with Operation Blackout being the first G.I. Joe console release of any kind since 2009 GI Joe: Rise of the Cobra movie loop. (Before that, the last time the Joes had much of a presence in games was in 1992, in a self-titled arcade game from Konami and the NES. GI Joe: The Atlantis factor.)
Reading between the lines, Wizards hiring former WB Games developers to apparently run their Raleigh-Durham studio may offer some clues as to the state of the games division at Warner Bros.
Questions have been circling Warner Bros. ‘development arm, which is currently working on games like Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League and Harry Potter cleave Hogwarts legacy—Since WarnerMedia (formerly Time-Warner Inc.) was bought by AT&T in 2018. The media company was hit with mass layoffs as part of a corporate restructuring in August 2020, sparking speculation in the industry that Warner Bros. Interactive could be sold.
AT&T announced in May that WarnerMedia spin off as a separate company in a merger with Discovery. Meanwhile, WB’s big-budget triple-A game list was almost completely absent from the company’s E3 announcements in June. Instead, the company only offered an update on the upcoming game. Back 4 Blood. (Mortal Kombat‘s NetherRealm and Shadow of MordorMonolith has been similarly silent for some time).
In a statement during its restructuring, AT&T said that WB Interactive was staying with the family. But gathering concrete information on the current status of their studies or projects in development has been difficult ever since. Namely, this new study highlighting former WB Games bosses as part of their leadership could have bigger implications.