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Emptyvessel Is A new AAA Studio Formed By Former Id Software And Naughty Dog Veterans

Emptyvessel Is A new AAA Studio Formed By Former Id Software And Naughty Dog Veterans

From one studio formation announcement to another. This time, it is veterans from Naughty Dog and Id Software that have teamed up to form a new AAA development studio, Emptyvessel. Although the studio is based in Austin, Texas, it will accept fully remote employees from across the globe.

Emptyvessel Is A new AAA Studio Formed By Former Id Software And Naughty Dog Veterans

According to the studio’s official website, “Emptyvessel is at the vanguard of building games that feel great to play”. The studio said their team consists of passionate creators who “share a vision of disrupting the expected ways”. They are currently calling on talented people to join their squad. A chance for those who may have recently lost their jobs to mass layoffs.

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“Emptyvessel is a team of industry veterans who specialize in the immersive shooter space. We believe that with Creative Independence, Comes Greatness.”

At the time of writing, the team consisted of 15 executive members including founder and game director Emanuel Palalic and Garrett Young as general manager. Before founding Emptyvessel, Palalic was a key content creator for Doom, Killing Floor 3, and Exodus.

“I’m super excited and proud to be able to announce a new studio I’ve formed with friends!” announced Palalic on X on Tuesday, March 12, 2024. “It’s really been a dream come true and I can’t wait to share more with everyone in the future”.

Emptyvessel Is A new AAA Studio Formed By Former Id Software And Naughty Dog Veterans

Young, on the other hand, had held leadership positions at Activision, Disney, Id Software, and Microsoft. He was instrumental in the launch of Forza Motorsport and Project Gotham Racing franchises as well as helped in the reboot of popular franchises like Doom, Quake, and Rage.

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Kevin Powell will play the role of senior design director at Emptyvessel. Powell has over 14 years of experience in combat mechanics and system design. He has worked on popular franchises including Borderlands, Smite, Tribes, and Wayfinder, and we would love to see how that wealth of experience manifests in Emptyvessel’s debut IP.

Emptyvessel’s first project will be powered by Unreal Engine 5

The studio plans to leverage the experience of its team members “in the immersive shooter space” and “is inspired by film, graphic novels and games set in dystopian sci-fi worlds”. Emptyvessel said its strategy “is to create a space to foster the innovation of a nimble, core team of AAA-level talent while empowering them to create high-quality IPs with more attainable scope”.

The independent studio has raised an initial seed funding round led by Sisu Game Ventures. However, it has secured additional investment from Raptor Group, Bill Munk (Tripwire Interactive co-owner), and Dan Bunting (former Treyarch co-studio head). Petrol and Team Audio are also listed as Emptyvessel’s key partners.

Emptyvessel Is A new AAA Studio Formed By Former Id Software And Naughty Dog Veterans

“Many game developers like myself began our journey fueled by the dream of one day bringing our worlds to life,” said Palalic. “By prioritizing and aligning with our strengths, we’re confident it’s possible to create AAA-quality games with smaller, focused teams.

“The industry has often overlooked the people who pour their hearts and souls into crafting these worlds. With Emptyvessel, we’re determined to change that narrative and make that dream a reality for as many developers as we can.”

We recently reported that former God of War 3 and Star Wars Jedi game director Stig Asmussen has also formed an AAA studio called Giant Skull. The studio hopes to focus on a single-player experience using Unreal Engine 5.

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The upspringing of new studios is a breath of fresh air in the video game industry for players and developers who might have lost their jobs to the recent waves of layoffs. However, the flip side is that it leads to a further explosion of video games in an already saturated market.