Deep Silver has announced that the new TimeSplitters game will be developed by a 'reformed' Free Radical Design, the developer that worked on the original series.
In a Twitter statement, Deep Silver confirmed that it is reforming Free Radical Design as a new studio, headed up by studio (and TimeSplitters) veterans Steve Ellis and David Doak.
The statement emphasizes that development on this new TimeSplitters hasn't started yet, calling the new studio "an exciting first step in the process". So it's unlikely we'll get our hands on the new TimeSplitters for a while yet.
A new Deep Silver Studio is coming - Free Radical Design pic.twitter.com/N5qTTcZfsWMay 20, 2021
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Time to split...again
TimeSplitters was originally created by Free Radical Design, which later became Crytek UK. Speaking to TechRadar in 2012, TimeSplitters developer Steve Ellis revealed that there was no chance we would be seeing TimeSplitters 4 on PS4 or Xbox One, as the series proved difficult to market in the modern games climate. Crytek eventually shut down in 2014 and the majority of staff were moved to Dambuster Studios, hammering the final nail in the coffin of a potential TimeSplitters 4 title – until now.
Back in 2018, THQ bought the rights to the TimeSplitters IP. It wasn't until 2019 that we got an inkling of what the publisher planned to do with the franchise. In a press release (opens in new tab) in 2019, the publisher revealed that it had hired Steve Ellis, one of the original series' creators, "to help plot the future course for this franchise". This pretty much confirmed we would see more TimeSplitters in the future.
We now know more TimeSplitters is definitely coming, with veterans of the original team back at the helm. However, it's still unclear if bringing the TimeSplitters franchise "back to life" will involve rebooting the series, continuing on from Future Perfect or remaking the original three games. But either way, for the sake of authenticity, it's encouraging to see some of the game's original development team on board.