Consider my System Shocked
Irrational Games is dead. Well, not really. Earlier this year, the studio known for titles like BioShock and System Shock 2 rebranded itself as Ghost Story Games, the final step in a shift away from its triple-A pedigree towards a tight-knit indie studio. During this process, founder Ken Levine laid off all but 15 employees at Irrational Games in order to pursue the desire to be, “a small team making games for the core gaming audience.” It’s a tough burden to bear, and tougher still when all your studio has to its name is a talented staff and a mission statement.
Today, we’ve finally got an inkling of what Ghost Story Games is up to. According to a job listing by the studio, Ghost Story is looking for an experienced Level Builder to craft and create levels for their, “immersive, story-driven video games.” The listing states that the upcoming game will be built in Unreal Engine 4, and that applicants must have, “deep knowledge of and experience with development of FPS/Action/RPG/Strategy/Immersive Sim titles.”
This comes as no surprise to anyone familiar with Irrational Games or Ken Levine. After the release of BioShock Infinite, Levine stated that he no longer desired to work in triple-A games, and wanted to shift the focus to small-scale projects that don’t require a lot of capital to create.
Given Levine’s history at Looking Glass Studios, working on titles like Thief: The Dark Project, and his penchant for semi open-world immersive sims with titles like BioShock and System Shock 2, it’s no wonder that Levine and Co. want to return to such an interesting genre of games. I only hope the sacrifices the studio made along the way were worth it.