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THQ Nordic hires TimeSplitters co-creator to work on franchise return

As ex-Free Radical studio takes over Dead Island 2.

Former Rare and Free Radical Design veteran Steve Ellis has joined THQ Nordic to work on whatever's next for TimeSplitters.

Ellis is described by THQ Nordic as co-creator of the much-loved, much-missed British shooter franchise - which the publisher snapped up from former owner Crytek this time last year.

In a press release today, THQ Nordic said Ellis had "joined us to help plot the future course for this franchise". It's unknown what a new TimeSplitters game might look like now - a sequel? a remake? - or who else from that original team nearly two decades ago may return.

Crytek held the TimeSplitters rights for years after rescuing developer Free Radical Design from bankruptcy, but never found time to do anything with them. Here's hoping something moves forward now.

Cover image for YouTube videoLet's Play TimeSplitters 2 - Late To The Party

In related news, Deep Silver Dambuster Studios - what became of Free Radical Design after Crytek sold up - has become the latest developer to take on Dead Island 2.

Development on the sequel has ping-ponged between different studios since its announcement at E3 2014. Originally expected from Dead Island creator Techland, it was officially announced as in development with Spec Ops: The Line studio Yager in charge. This lasted around a year, until Yager departed the project in summer 2015. Early 2016 brought news UK outfit Sumo Digital was now in charge, although in the three years since nothing has ever materialised.

Today's release also mentions THQ Nordic has formalised its relationship with Darksiders studio Gunfire and snapped up the studio, along with MotoGP developer Milestone. Phew.