Xbox studio Double Fine working on multiple different projects after Psychonauts 2
Multiple teams are now trying out new ideas.
What you need to know
- Double Fine's latest game, Psychonauts 2, launched earlier in 2021.
- The studio is now mostly finished with Psychonauts 2 support.
- The studio is splitting up into multiple teams to work on various projects.
Double Fine Productions is now working on multiple projects, per an update on crowdfunding platform Fig (as noticed by VGC). The team launched Psychonauts 2 to critical acclaim earlier in 2021 across multiple platforms. With the game out, the studio's attention appears to turn to trying out multiple new games.
"The studio is already splitting up into various teams and starting different projects that we think you'll enjoy," the update explains. "We like experimentation here at Double Fine. Every game is a chance to explore new ideas, new visual styles or gameplay, emotions, and more."
Double Fine is mostly finished with Psychonauts 2 support, though Mac and Linux ports are still being developed, alongside remaining backer rewards that are slated to arrive throughout 2022. The studio was acquired by Microsoft as part of Xbox Game Studios in 2019.
Psychonauts 2 was already in development via a crowdfunding effort, so it still launched as a multiplatform game. Moving forward, future Double Fine titles will be exclusive to platforms with Xbox Game Pass, similar to titles from other recently-acquired teams at Xbox Game Studios, such as Ninja Theory's Hellblade 2: Senua's Saga and Obsidian Entertainment's The Outer Worlds 2.
In our review of Psychonauts 2, we noted that it was a "wonderful, masterfully crafted platformer exploring complex themes while providing tons of fun gameplay."
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Samuel Tolbert is a freelance writer covering gaming news, previews, reviews, interviews and different aspects of the gaming industry, specifically focusing on Xbox and PC gaming on Windows Central. You can find him on Twitter @SamuelTolbert.
Tim Schaefer said on Kinda Funny (we have cool friends) last year that their next game will not be a Reboot, Remake or Sequel.
It will be interesting to see if they fully develop any of the games from their Amnesia Fortnight game jam.
I'm expecting, and excited for Double Fine to get back to smaller more frequent games though. Psychonauts 2 is an exception in scope that I don't think we will be seeing from Double Fine again anytime soon.
MS should be fine with that since GAMEPASS can use all the games it can get.
A lot of studios are resource-constrained and do small games out of necessity rather than preference. Double Fine (pre-MS) needed a kickstarter to do PSYCHONAUTS2. Now they don't. So its unclear which way they'll go now that they can expect the support to realize their creative ambitions. There's no telling which way they'll go. Would anybody have expected RARE to go the way of SEA OF THIEVES or OBSIDIAN to do GROUNDED?
It is easy to pigeonhole creatives based on past output but they're not all happy to keep on cranking out sequels and variations on a theme indefinitely.
It might be best to sit back and wait and let them surprise us. Its a new generation with new hardware and new tools. They might want to stretch their creativity to match.