Digital Illusions CE has begun collaborating with DesertCombat mod developer Trauma Studios on "one of Digital Illusions' previously announced projects", in a deal that runs for 12 months worth approximately $550,000.
15-man New York City-based Trauma Studios rose to fame in 2002 and 2003 by creating a mod that aped the phenomenal success of best-known mod success story Counter-Strike. With more than three million cumulative downloads so far, DesertCombat - a modern day warfare conversion for DICE's Battlefield 1942 - is one of the driving forces because BF's continued success, and DICE obviously recognises that.
"We understood the impact DesertCombat had quite early. The mod kept Battlefield's popularity in place during the last year, as well as helped us sell a considerable amount of games," DICE CEO Patrick Söderlund gushed. "We have established a close cooperation with Trauma, and now we have come to an exclusive agreement with them."
Although scant few details were offered on the terms of the collaboration (even the $550,000 figure is being reported carefully because nobody's 100 per cent sure what's attached to it), we do know it's a previously announced DICE project, which obviously implicates the hotly anticipated Battlefield Vietnam - a game that shares many common elements with the DesertCombat modification. However with BF Vietnam due out on March 19th according to publisher EA's latest dates, it'll be interesting to see just what Trauma ends up doing in the aftermath of its release.
We do feel safe however speculating that Trauma will not be contributing to RalliSport Challenge 2.