Rebellion talks Shellshock 2
For PS3 and 360.
After completing 12 PSP titles, Rebellion has told GamesIndustry.biz that it's now fully focused on home consoles, with a sequel to Eidos' Shellshock the first PS3 and 360 title from the UK studio.
The developer has finished 2007 with a portfolio of high-profile PSP licenses including The Simpsons Game, Star War Battlefront and Alien Vs Predator, but is now confident of shifting to Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 formats.
"Next year we'll have our first next-gen project out - Shellshock 2 with Eidos," confirmed CEO Jason Kingsley, speaking exclusively to GamesIndustry.biz at last week's Game Connection event.
"It's very much a mature product, it's a bit like Jacob's Ladder or Apocalypse Now in movie terms. It's troubling - deliberately so - it's meant to be challenging the nature of war, the horror and why people do these horrific things to each other.
"It'll be our first next-gen title, which is slightly nerve-wracking, but it's looking absolutely lovely," he said.
As well as working on Shellshock, Rebellion is hoping to push forward with titles based on its own original IP, which include Rogue Trooper, Sniper Elite and the properties of its 2000AD comic book business.
"This year we've done a lot of other people's licenses but next year we'll have much more of a balance of licenses and some original product. The year after it's very likely we'll have a slew of original, home-brand IPs," revealed Kingsley.
"For example, the Rogue Trooper rights for next-gen have come back to us so we're looking at and planning what we can do with that brand, because it was successful and we're very proud of it, so we'd like to do more with it."
And as Rebellion expands its other publishing outlets - the company has a successful horror and sci-fi book imprint called Abaddon Books - Kingsley admits there are more opportunities for cross-media licensing.
"There's always that possibility of TV, film licensing and videogames with these ideas. It's much easier to launch a new idea as a comic book or a book than it is to do a game," he said. "It's quicker and with games you can sometimes lose the enthusiasm."
While not completely abandoning the idea of more PSP work, Kingsley believes following the now-established home consoles will prove to be the best direction for not only the business, but for its 280 staff as well.
"Chances are we'll have fewer games out next year because they'll be bigger titles. We're not going to be doing much more in the way of PSP stuff unless it comes with a big next-gen title," he said.
"The issue for us is that our staff very much want to work on next-gen and so it makes sense to make deals where they can work on the next big thing. We've been preparing for this transition since the last one.
"While we were not involved in the first wave of games I think a lot of games have suffered from being released too early. Progress has been really good in all of our studios. We need scale and we've always wanted to have five titles in development at any one time," he added.