Ex-Blizzard, Sony Online Entertainment and Relic Entertainment developers have formed a new studio based in San Diego-based called Molten Games.
Molton's chief product officer is Paul Della Bitta who was previously Blizzard's senior director of global community development and eSport. The firm's VP of creative development is Blaine Smith, who was lead designer on Pox Nora for SOE, and lead designer on Company of Heroes Online at Relic Entertainment.
The first title in the works will be a free-to-play, online triple-A PC title and it was funded through a multi-million dollar investment from NCSoft.
Currently hiring for all sorts of positions,
Molten Games told GI International the firm was founded in order to have creative control overs its own development and IP.
"We remember the games and the dev studios back in the day," said Della Bitta. "We played a lot of Valve and Blizzard games before I worked there. These were studios that were made up of gamers just making great games they enjoyed playing. And we're trying to follow in those footsteps.
"AAA to us is really an identifier for quality, with the advent of mobile and social games, some gamers are starting to associate free-to-play with games that don't have the depth or overall quality level that was expected of a PC or console title of the past.
"This is a game that you would have happily paid $60 for at retail. We're just trying to take advantage of the free-to-play model, but we want people to have the same expectation of quality they would if they went and bought a $60 console game at the store."
Molten Games will provide more details on its first title at a later date.