Bend Studios is making a “AAA live-service” game – WGB


Bend Studios, the PlayStation-owned company responsible for developing the likes of Days Gone and Syphon Filter, are currently seeking a Lead Project Manager for their next game, and the listing has given us an idea of what they are up to.

Bend has been quiet for a while now. Their last release was Days Gone, a game I view as underrated, which managed to sell 7.3m copies across several years according to data acquired during the Insomniac leak late last year. However, the mixed critical reception and the lengthy development time caused Sony to decline a sequel.

In 2022, the studio gave us a small hint at what they might be doing when they revealed their new logo. “The new Bend Studio logo is just the beginning of Bend Studio’s future”, the studio wrote. “As part of the PlayStation Studios family, we promise to continue bringing you quality experiences that aim to leave an everlasting impact with you. Today, we are excited to share just a snippet of news on our current project. We are currently working on a new IP that includes multiplayer and builds upon the open-world systems of Days Gone, but brings you a whole new world that we are extremely excited to craft for you. We cannot wait to reveal it to you when the time is right.”

We also know Sony has invested quite a lot of resources into developing numerous live-service games, and it seems Bend’s new title will be one of them.

The new job listing for a Lead Project Manager includes numerous references to live-service experience being needed, as well as experience in helping studios shift from traditional boxed games to a live-service model.

Under requirements, the listing calls for, “Hands-on game development experience in leadership roles shipping AAA live service games. “

The listing also mentions applicants needing “Experience redefining studios from traditional “boxed product” focused game development into live service development studios in a key leadership role.”

Based on recent layoffs and insider reports, it seems a few of Sony’s planned live-service games may have already been tossed in the trash can. They do still have a few in the pipeline though, such as Concord, and, of course, there’s the recently released Helldivers 2 which has become a sensation in the gaming community.

Personally, I’d rather have seen Days Gone sequel but it seems as though that will never happen. I don’t particularly like the live-service model as it stands, but Sony are smart to at least venture into that market, and I’m always rooting for a studio as talented as Bend to do well. Fingers crossed their new game can draw in a crowd.

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