Ghost Games is taking over the Need for Speed franchise just a year after Criterion took stewardship of EA’s flagship racer. The new Swedish developer told VideoGamer that the franchise needs the consistency of a single, dedicated team to stay ahead of the competition.
“It cannot go from black to white between Black Box and Criterion, and that’s why we’re now thinking about the brand as Ghost owns it,” Ghost studio head Marcus Nilsson said. “We’re going to build it, we’re going to build it on Frostbite 3, [and] people will see something they are familiar with every time we release the game. And I think that is the core basis of building a brand; that people know what to expect.”
Criterion contributed significantly to the development of Need for Speed Rivals, but it looks like the studio will have more resources to devote to its mysterious non-racer from here on out; Nilsson confirmed development will not shift back and forth between the two on the typical two-year schedule.
“When you go from a Shift experience to The Run experience to a Hot Pursuit experience, then it loses credibility,” Nilsson continued. “I think we now have the work of re-establishing that credibility with building the brand. You know, it’s still a really strong brand, absolutely. We just need to make sure people know what to expect when they get it, and Rivals is absolutely the first step toward that.”