Brothers in Arms isn’t dead, Randy Pitchford has said, with a new, “authentic” game in the very, very early stages. – but usual publisher Ubisoft has bowed out of the picture.
Speaking to IGN, the Gearbox Software boss said he and his team love the Brothers in Arms series.
“There will be an authentic Brothers in Arms game,” Pitchford said. “We haven’t announced that yet, but I’m really excited about where that’s going too. We’ll announce these things in due course. There’s a lot of neat things we have going on.”
The project is still in pre-production, and Pitchford considers that it would be “reckless” to start talking about it now, when it may be up to five years away.
“That’s why I don’t announce things until we know what they are. It’s not fair to hold us accountable for a process that’s designed to get to a quality end that’s good for the customer. We love Brothers in Arms and we’re committed to more time in that space. As we get to places where it makes sense to announce things in that regard, we’ll do that, too,” he said.
Meanwhile, the game announced as Brothers in Arms: Furious Four is still a thing, having spun off as a new IP.
“Most people will not recognize it as ever having anything to do with Brothers in Arms. If you’ve seen the Furious 4 demo or you go back and watch that stuff, you’ll notice the DNA. You can feel the DNA, because it’s an iterative, continuous development process,” Pitchford said.
“But it’s a process that decided to unhinge itself from Brothers in Arms and go where it needed to go. Furious 4 is evolving into something else. At some point we’ll announce what that thing is. It’ll feel like an entirely new thing. It’s going to be at that moment that it’ll feel like the starting point.”
Interestingly, long-time Brothers in Arms publisher Ubisoft hasn’t picked up either game.
“Ubi will not publish the new brand. We haven’t signed the next Brothers in Arms game with anyone yet,” Pitchford said. “Ubisoft’s a great publisher. They’ve been a great partner for Brothers in Arms for many years.”
The phrasing suggests Gearbox has not yet begun pitching the new Brothers in Arms to publishers, but it’s clear Ubisoft is not keen on whatever Furious Four has become. Pitchford said the “tension” of announcing a game under an existing brand, getting a poor reaction from fans as it evolved, and then finally re-announcing it as a new IP, hasn’t ben easy for either Gearbox or Ubisoft.
“Gearbox and Ubisoft have had a great relationship, but that’s tough, to go through that tension. They were expecting something that didn’t happen the way it did, but we need to do what we need to do. Everybody’s going to deal with that,” he added.