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Free Radical

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Wolfenstein's New Order, EA Wars & Presidential Nad-Kicks


The Destructoid Show eats pizza and stays up late
May 07
// Max Scoville
Today's Destructoid Show is here to tell you all the worst news about video games. And also some good news, too, I guess. Wolfenstein: The New Order has been announced, and it has robots. Disney has handed over the Star Wars...
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Cancelled

Get sad: Over an hour of Star Wars Battlefront 3 footage


More gameplay of cancelled 2008 game
May 06
// Allistair Pinsof
Free Radical's Star Wars Battlefront sequel has made many appearances on various streams and video hosting channels since cancellation in 2008, but this weekend saw one of the most generous videos: an hour-long playthrough o...
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TimeSplitters

Crytek-authorized fan-made Timesplitters game is go!


Fans and former developers reunite for this remake
Mar 15
// Alasdair Duncan
The future of the TimeSplitters franchise looked bleak when Free Radical was bought by Crytek and nothing was heard of the series in some time. Now, a fan-made TimeSplitters game will see the light of day before the end of th...

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Concerns with marketing and Haze stopped TimeSplitters 4


Can we have a story about TimeSplitters that isn't disappointing?
Nov 27
// Jordan Devore
Speaking to GamesTM, former Free Radical staff Steve Ellis and Karl Hilton gave two of the major reasons why the TimeSplitters hasn't moved forward. In the early stages of development, "A small playable demo was shown to seve...
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Sad face: TimeSplitters 2 HD was being worked on in 2008


Oct 02
// Jordan Devore
I originally wasn't going to write about this, but then I remembered that ignorance isn't so blissful after all. It's tough to be a fan of TimeSplitters these days -- any news regarding the series seems to be painful to read....
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TimeSplitters 4 gets its own '100,000 Strong' movement


Jun 18
// Jordan Devore
We know that TimeSplitters 4 is not in development, but perhaps that can change. Fans have put together a Facebook campaign dubbed "100,000 Strong for TimeSplitters 4" in an attempt to drum up support for a potential follow-u...
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Battlefront 3 killed by 'psychopaths' at LucasArts


May 07
// Jim Sterling
Free Radical co-founders David Doak and Steve Ellis and former audio director Graeme Norgate have been chatting to Eurogamer about Star Wars: Battlefront 3, revealing the chain of unsavory events that led to its cancella...
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Just kidding: TimeSplitters 4 not in development actually


Apr 27
// Kyle MacGregor
Earlier in the week news broke that "trusted OXM sources" had seen TimeSplitters 4 in action, rekindling rumors regarding the existence of the long-awaited fourth installment of the time-traveling first-person shoot...
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'Trusted OXM sources' claim to have seen TimeSplitters 4


Apr 25
// Kyle MacGregor
It's hard to believe its been over ten years since we first enjoyed the monkey-filled, time travelling insanity that was Timesplitters. Unfortunately, the once popular FPS series has fallen into obscurity as of late, having y...

The Story of Second Sight

Jun 21 // Jim Sterling
Redemption Free Radical is most commonly associated with the Timesplitters series, but had things gone differently, Second Sight might have been the studio's premier offering. It was originally called Redemption, and it was set to be Free Radical's first ever game.  "Originally the game had a working title of Redemption and was initially intended to be the first game developed by Free Radical Design," remembers Karl Hilton, now the managing director of Crytek UK. "From the outset, the premise of how your actions in the game change the course of the story and how failure would result in a cyclical re-telling of a story that had gone badly for the player was key. We pitched it to several publishers who all were very enthusiastic about it. "When the launch of the PS2 moved back slightly, we realized there was an opportunity to get a less narratively complex multiplayer game out in time for launch and so at that point Redemption was put on hold while we developed the first TimeSplitters game. Interestingly, I don’t recall us ever having too much in the way of documentation for the game when we first pitched it to publishers. We had a business plan but our game planning was still in its early stages." Timesplitters was released in 2000, where it garnered positive reviews and kickstarted a series that is still loved by gamers today. The unique art direction was a big part of what Timesplitters so memorable, a style that continued in Redemption, which had not been forgotten in spite of Free Radical's success with its multiplayer shooter.  Second Thoughts Second Sight was officially announced on February 24, 2004, but it had been in development far longer. In fact, we'd have heard about the title considerably earlier had the game's first potential publisher not gotten cold feet. "The original publisher unfortunately changed their mind about it quite far in to development and so, for a while, it was without a publisher," says Karl. "This meant we didn't start to publicize the game as early as we wanted to do. Codemasters, who we eventually signed it up with, were very enthusiastic about it and gave us as much publicity as we could generate together at very short notice (particularly for E3 that year). It certainly wasn’t an ideal situation." The game itself had unfortunately suffered a difficult development. The team had gotten pretty adept at first-person-shooters, but it tried to run before it could walk with the third-person psychic gameplay of Second Sight.  "Partly because it was our first third person game, Second Sight had quite a protracted and sometimes difficult development process. We were a little over-ambitious in the early stages and had to reduce the size of some of the levels we were building. However it was very refreshing to be working in third person for the graphics and we were all enthusiastic about the originality of the story we were telling and how we were telling it. We were also very confident about the overall quality of the game." Despite arriving late to the party, Second Sight certainly got some decent coverage. I personally remember seeing a fair few magazine stories on the title, which is how I got quite excited for the title. It looked gorgeous for its time, and the gameplay was incredibly promising, not to mention unique.  At least, it was unique until people took notice of another title with the exact same premise -- Psi-Ops: The Mindgate Conspiracy.  A Situation No Psychic Could Have Predicted "We were certainly a little surprised when we first heard about it but you always have to allow for competitors arriving in your 'market space' whether deliberately or coincidentally," expresses Hilton. "We didn’t let Psi-Ops influence Second Sight in any way as we were confident that what we were making was sufficiently different, despite some of the higher level similarities." In a manner that perhaps mirrored this generation's "inFAMOUS vs. Prototype" conflict, press outlets and gamers alike couldn't help comparing and contrasting the two visually distinct, but eerily similar games. There were a few notable difference, of course. Second Sight was the more atmospheric game, with a focus on narrative and a great reliance on stealth and tactics. Psi-Ops took the mentally powered gameplay in a more action-oriented direction, with more realistic visuals and a comparatively direct storyline.  The differences don't matter in a marketplace that has two games revolving around psychic powers where previously there were none. At the time, you couldn't bring up one game without the other getting mentioned, and there was a definite case of gamers deciding to choose between the two.  Looking back, Karl Hilton doesn't think he can even guess whether or not the conflict helped or harmed Second Sight in any way, but that at least the fight between the two games generated some discussion and kept the game in the spotlight. "It’s impossible to say whether it affected sales or not. In one sense it was good to have the extra coverage that the two games 'competing' with each other generated." It could almost be said that neither game really "won" in the end. Both titles failed to become blockbuster success stories and neither one got a sequel. For Second Sight, Hilton believes the game just didn't have enough time to get the attention that new intellectual property needs. Codemasters supported the game as best it could, but the delayed announcement and failure to generate enough hype in time led to a less than glorious launch. "As a developer you always automatically want more marketing as it is always a positive and should help your game to sell more. However, I think the lack of a proper ‘build up’ phase when we didn’t have a publisher hurt us more in the long run. A new IP needs to build anticipation and hype in the gaming community and Second Sight didn’t get that chance. In terms of press reviews, it certainly didn’t get the overwhelmingly positive response that you always hope for. Most reviewers 'liked' it and it got a mix of reasonable scores for story, graphics, sound etc. but nothing outstanding." The idea of Second Sight enjoying a "reasonable" ride extended to sales as well, with Karl stating they were, "Okay but not great." All told, the game generated just shy of one million sales after its launch. No Second Outing Unfortunately, it seems that we will never get to see Second Sight again. Crytek UK holds the full rights to the game and could theoretically make a sequel if it chose to, but it sees no need to revisit the IP. "Overall it didn’t generate sufficient interest for us to feel it was worth making a sequel," Hilton states. "We had some ideas ready, but we decided it didn’t have any momentum as a new franchise. Codemasters gave Second Sight good support and we even released a PC version (which wasn’t part of the original release plan). Ultimately history appears to have been much kinder to the game than we would have thought after its initial release.  "Second Sight does crop up occasionally in discussions in the gaming community about good narrative in games and games that were ‘sleeper’ hits (although you could never describe the final sales figures as a hit)." Overall, one gets the impression that Crytek UK is pleased to have made the game, but remains happy to let the past be the past. It had a crack of the whip, didn't quite get the desired results, and put it to bed. As someone who loved Second Sight, I feel it's a shame that the game didn't get a chance to expand its story and further grow into something special, but I'm glad I got to play it and that I can still talk about the game today.  Having achieved at least a cult legacy for itself, I dare say there will be a few open arms welcoming another Second Sight game. With enough marketing, it could have the potential to do amazingly well, because we have not had another game quite like it. I'd say BioShock is the closest we've come, but it's still not quite the game.  In any case, let it be known that there are still Second Sight fans out there who would love another game, should Crytek UK ever decide to pull it from the vault. 
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Second Sight is a game remembered more for its bad timing than for what it did as a piece of interactive entertainment. Before Free Radical released this game, our opportunity to play with psychic powers in videogames was par...

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More Star Wars: Battlefront III images appear


Dec 01
// Brad Nicholson
Feeling blue because a fresh Star Wars game hasn’t hit the market within the last 12 or so hours? Feel free to cheer up with the above, but restrain the excitement: that image is from Free Radical’s canned Star Wa...
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If the market demands a weird FPS, Crytek UK is ready for it


Aug 17
// Brad Nicholson
If demand for another quirky FPS arises, Crytek UK (once known as Free Radical) is primed to deliver it. Speaking with Develop, Crytek UK’s Karl Hilton wouldn’t rule out a fresh TimeSplitters title, even though th...
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Free Radical blames PS3 for Haze issues


Aug 12
// Jim Sterling
Haze, by all accounts, was not a successful game. The PS3 exclusive didn't sell well, and it was critically mauled with reviewers citing poorly executed combat, weak technical achievements, bad writing and ambitions that were...
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Crytek's console titles coming quicker thanks to Free Radical


Feb 11
// Brad Nicholson
Crytek’s CEO Cevat Yerli has told the gaming press several times that his studio won’t be creating anymore PC exclusives. The recent acquisition of Free Radical Design (Crytek UK) gave Crytek some solid FPS consol...
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Say goodbye to Free Radical and hello to Crytek UK


Feb 05
// Jordan Devore
Following Tuesday's news of TimeSplitters and Haze developer Free Radical being picked up by Crytek, it's now been confirmed that the studio has seen a name change. From this point forward, we will all have to refer to Free R...
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Free Radical was purchased by ... Crytek?


Feb 03
// Jordan Devore
As was teased yesterday, TimeSplitters developer Free Radical Design's fate was to be revealed on February 4, but it looks like someone couldn't keep quiet about the exciting news -- the company has been bought by Crytek. Haz...
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Free Radical needs some Nectar, studio's future decided on February 4


Feb 02
// Brad Nicholson
Free Radical Design’s future as a developer will be announced on February 4. The studio behind the magical Star Wars Battlefront III footage and games like TimeSplitters and Haze was forced into administration last year...
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Rumortoid: Pandemic still has Battlefront, Rebellion worked on PS2 version


Jan 22
// Brad Nicholson
If you’re keeping track -- I’m not sure how you are -- Star Wars: Battlefront III might have changed hands several times. Initially, it was Free Radical’s game. The leaked alpha footage from last week (liter...
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Don't Panic: Free Radical Design isn't dead just yet


Dec 21
// Joseph Leray
In this time of doom, gloom, and economic despair, we could all learn something from the late, great Douglas Adams: Don't Panic.A few days ago, we reported that Free Radical Design had locked its doors, closed up shop, and pe...
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Rumortoid: Free Radical locking its doors?


Dec 18
// Jim Sterling
Here's a rather strange (and dismaying) rumor that has recently surfaced on the Eurogamer forums. According to a poster there, Free Radical Design employees are currently sitting at a Holiday Inn, wondering why they've been l...
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Free Radical wants to know your platform of choice for TimeSplitters 4


Sep 18
// Jordan Devore
With so little information about TimeSplitters 4 circulating around the Internet and Haze not going over well with a considerable number of people, it's hard to know what to expect from Free Radical.Will TimeSplitters 4 be on...
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Ubisoft/Free Radical: Please install this patch for Haze that doesn't exist


May 23
// Nick Chester
Having only played through some of the demo for Haze, I'm not even going to comment on the quality of Free Radical's PlayStation 3 first-person shooter. I will say that the four-player cooperative drop-in/drop-out sounds real...
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Korn's music video for Haze plus three new videos of Haze's multiplayer


Apr 23
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
Here's the song by Korn that was made Ubisoft's and Free Radical's Haze. The song is called Haze and Korn performed it live at a concert. The song is available on Korn's new album that was released overseas. To quote the pres...
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Bargain Bin Laden #37: Second Sight


Feb 17
// Jim Sterling
Psychic power in videogames was an idea that had not been fully explored by 2004, and still hasn't been fully whored out, strangely enough. It was a complete and utter shame then, that by some cruel stroke of dastardly coinci...
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A behind the scenes look at Haze


Nov 10
// Jordan Devore
Screenwriter for Free Radical, Rob Yescombe, takes it to the streets of Nottingham to talk with kids, bums, and goths about the upcoming first-person shooter, Haze. Of the people he chats with, few of them have the slightest ...
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Here's a Radical idea: just say no to used games


Oct 29
// SRVSLPS
If you happen to be the type of person who prefers the used game market in lieu of paying full price for your next fix in what amounts to an already expensive hobby, then Free Radical's David Braben has a few choice words for...
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TimeSplitters 4 teaser: fight to the finish


Oct 09
// Jordan Devore
Are you eagerly awaiting the release of TimeSplitters 4? If so, head on over to Free Radical's Web Site for a little teaser that you should find very amusing. If you answered no to that question, you should still go the site,...
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Haze will have rumble on the PS3. Yeah, that's it


Sep 29
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
This latest video for Haze shows you no gameplay or cinematic at all. All it shows is a PS3 controller vibrating. In fact, I'm not even sure why I'm bothering posting this video aside from the fact that it's the weekend and t...
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Timesplitters 4 looking probable for the Wii


Sep 25
// David Houghton
Some new tips drop into my in-box like a shiny big dollop of liquid gold. From the day the Wii was announced, FPS on the machine has been at the forefront of my mind, and I've had a vaguely realized image of a perfect example...
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Kick ass abilities: just another reason why you should care about Haze


Aug 11
// Jordan Devore
With a seemingly endless amount of high-profile games coming out in the next few months, it’s easy to lose track of every single last title that looked good to you at one point in time or another. There’s a chan...

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