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Double Fine Goes From One To Four

The San Fran-based developer is working on four games at the same time.

Tim Schafer, game designer of Monkey Island fame and now his own boss at Double Fine Productions, has left his mark on the Brighton-based Develop conference, revealing in his keynote some surprising news about what it is Double Fine is up to these days.

Brutal Legend 2 wasn't greenlit by the game's original publisher, Shafer said during his speech, and as a result, the studio had to gear up quickly and hit the road with its existing prototypes. Four of them, to be precise. Fascinatingly, all four of these "best of" pet projects have been signed by multiple publishers and are now set to become real games.


I really hope one of these games incorporates Ozzy somehow.      

Shafer didn't go into specifics about the games during the keynote other than to say some of the games will be downloadable, and to identify each game's respective project leads, according to VideoGamer. Double Fine staffers Lee PettyNathan Martz, Bad Muir, and Tasha Harris, all of whom have experience with Brutal Legend, are heading up the projects. 
 
To keep this is a bit in focus: Double Fine has only released two games since its creation in 2000: Psychonauts and Brutal Legend. Now it has four games, all with publisher backing, at the same time. Talk about what must feel like overload over there. 
 
UPDATE: A couple of name corrections: it's Nathan Martz instead of Nathan Marks and Tasha Harris as opposed to Tascher Harris as we previously reported.
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Posted by BradNicholson
Tim Schafer, game designer of Monkey Island fame and now his own boss at Double Fine Productions, has left his mark on the Brighton-based Develop conference, revealing in his keynote some surprising news about what it is Double Fine is up to these days.

Brutal Legend 2 wasn't greenlit by the game's original publisher, Shafer said during his speech, and as a result, the studio had to gear up quickly and hit the road with its existing prototypes. Four of them, to be precise. Fascinatingly, all four of these "best of" pet projects have been signed by multiple publishers and are now set to become real games.


I really hope one of these games incorporates Ozzy somehow.      

Shafer didn't go into specifics about the games during the keynote other than to say some of the games will be downloadable, and to identify each game's respective project leads, according to VideoGamer. Double Fine staffers Lee PettyNathan Martz, Bad Muir, and Tasha Harris, all of whom have experience with Brutal Legend, are heading up the projects. 
 
To keep this is a bit in focus: Double Fine has only released two games since its creation in 2000: Psychonauts and Brutal Legend. Now it has four games, all with publisher backing, at the same time. Talk about what must feel like overload over there. 
 
UPDATE: A couple of name corrections: it's Nathan Martz instead of Nathan Marks and Tasha Harris as opposed to Tascher Harris as we previously reported.
Posted by wapostyle

 Cool.    

Posted by Aeterna

I already read a lengthy interview over at Eurogamers. Worth checking out guys.

Posted by puchuupuncher

this is awesome news for Double Fine.  Lets just hope they aren't spreading themselves too thin...

Posted by Tesla

I hope one of those games is Brutal Legend Remix.  Remove the bad RTS gameplay and just make it an open world Zelda/GTA type joint.  I wanted to like that game so badly, what a shame.

Posted by bartok

Hopefully they can start making games that not only have fun stories but are fun to play as well.

Posted by CoolDrMoney

Maybe one of them will actually end up being fun

Posted by SkullcrusherMountain

Well, I guess instead of one conceptually amazing but eventually disappointing game every 5 years, they'll go to a conceptually amazing but eventually disappointing game every 12-18 months.
 
:|

Posted by zonerover

Does this mean they're going to rename themselves Double Double Fine?

Posted by lacke

Maybe it's just me but I feel that "smaller" games fit DP more than big-budget games. I hope there's a spiritual successor to Full Throttle.

Posted by OmegaPirate

Given how badly put together Brutal legend was, is this really a wise move?

Posted by EternalDarkWing
@zonerover: Double² Fine
Posted by Zippedbinders

I never cease to be amazed at the amount of people who disliked Brutal Legend, but to each their own. Tim and his talented studio making games is always great news, and I think a smaller, download based market might work better for them since their games have never been mass market. 
 
Lee Petty heading up anything is badass.

Posted by BigChief

I like the sound of this. Smaller games sound like they could work in Double Fine's favor, given the financial success of their last two games. Also glad to hear a lot more content is coming out, as over the last ten years they've only put out two games. Color me excited!

Posted by JackiJinx

As long as they're good games, I'm all for it. I like Tim's humor.

Posted by Crono

That is pretty intense.

Posted by anarchcorp

More Double Fine is always good in my mind.

Posted by ribeye

QUADRUPLE FIIIIIINNNNNEEE!!!
Posted by MrKlorox

Uh oh. I hope this works out for all of the games. But with two of them being downloadable, they're probably simpler projects to generate funding for the other two games.

Posted by ribeye
@Tesla said:
"I hope one of those games is Brutal Legend Remix.  Remove the bad RTS gameplay and just make it an open world Zelda/GTA type joint.  I wanted to like that game so badly, what a shame. "

i felt the same way about halfway thru that game, and i actually quit playing it for a month or two.  thought it kinda sucked, felt let down....then i fired it up again and had a blast finishing it off, once you really learn the controls for the RTS stuff it's not that bad.  i also think my mind was tainted by jeff's negatory comments about it on the bombcast.  if ur a fan of double fine in the least, you should give it another shot.  i wanted the same thing tho, just get rid of the RTS stuff entirely and it does still feel somewhat like they tried to cram too much in, but in the end i gave it a second chance and i'm glad i did
Posted by YoungFrey

I'm very excited.  Ever since Brütal Legend tanked, I've been worried it would sink the studio.

Posted by BeachThunder

At least one of them better be an adventure game D:

Posted by audiosnag

God i hope this company makes some money with this stuff. I loved Psychonauts and i really liked Brutal Legend even with its flaws. 
I don't care if these games are updated versions of Pong ima buy them.

Posted by ChernobylCow

Good post, Brad.  Thanks.

Edited by Jimbo

I think this makes a lot of sense for Double Fine.  Schafer is a creative genius, but he can't do gameplay and no publisher should be putting him charge of a massive budget title that must succeed.  I don't think the guy has it in him to make a 'safe' game.
 
They'd be a lot better off positioning themselves closer to Telltale / Quantic Dream and letting Tim's imagination run wild.

Posted by Pkshields

Give me a game with the story and humour of Brutal Legend without the RTS stuff and I'm sold all the way.

Posted by rottendevice

Good for them.  Psychonauts still ranks as one of my favorite games ever. Hopefully they have a hit with at least one of these.

Posted by ProfessorEss

Schafer and arcade titles seem like an absolutely perfect fit to me.
Few things in the videogame world get me excited like Schafer announcements.

Online
Posted by Tordah
@ribeye said:
" QUADRUPLE FIIIIIINNNNNEEE!!! "
Quote for truth!
Posted by heatDrive88

C'mon baby, show me a continuation in the Maniac Mansion/Day of the Tentacle adventure games or another Full Throttle game...
Posted by David

I don't want to be a grammar nazi but you misspelt Schafer twice there Brad. 
 
I@lacke said:

"I hope there's a spiritual successor to Full Throttle. " 

Seconded.
Posted by iAmJohn
@YoungFrey said:
" I'm very excited.  Ever since Brütal Legend tanked, I've been worried it would sink the studio. "
I wouldn't say it tanked (a couple hundred thousand's nothing to sneeze at - it's far more than Psychonauts did), but it certainly didn't do what either EA or Double Fine was expecting.
 
So how much you want to bet Activision is planning on purchasing whoever is publishing these games to spite Tim?
Posted by MetalGearSunny

I hope at least one of the four are actually good and not a total let down.

Posted by Cwaff

I'm psyched for this, I really enjoyed Brutal Legend for the most part... except the stage battles.

Posted by ribeye
@David said:
"I don't want to be a grammar nazi...."

but you are..
Posted by JohnnyMaverik
@Metal_Gear_Sunny:  
 
To be fair Psychonaughts, while far from perfect was very good all the same, so they have a 50/50 track record on making good games... so 2/4 then?
Edited by MajorToms

I'm sure if they have backing they might also get some funding. Funding = more developers = less work load for them. Unless of course these are mostly small games. 2-4 months with a small team can be a pretty good turn around, for smaller games. But if they're going to be big, I sure hope they hire some more people, because these titles will take eons to come out if they don't.

Posted by guiseppe

Good for them, good for us :D.

Posted by yevinorion
@Cwaff said:
" I'm psyched for this, I really enjoyed Brutal Legend for the most part... except the stage battles. "
Precisely, had they toned that stuff back or even just made it all AI controlled and you just controlled Riggs, I would have enjoyed the hell out of that game a lot more. I still have a lot of love for the world that game brought to life.
Posted by blaakmawf

I just hope it doesn't stretch the Schaferosity too thin.

Posted by _Phara0h_

I hope that he is making PSN/XBLA games....

Posted by BjornTheUnicorn

I'd like to see some non Schafer-fronted projects over there, too introduce some new blood to the gaming industry. And maybe try some episodic content like their buddies over at telltale do.

Posted by ajamafalous

"Bad Muir"
 
Brad Muir?

Posted by Babble

More games from Double Fine makes me happy. 

Posted by Hitchenson

I feel like I'm one of the few that really liked Brutal Legend, sure, it's not without its flaws, I just found the whole game experience to be a blast and the music, voice overs and humour were all done really well. Sad to hear a sequel hasn't been green-lit, although I'm not shocked by this.

Posted by ITSSEXYTIME

I still hope Brutal Legend 2 happens someday.  I loved the first one but the game could be improved in a lot of ways. (Most notably is having more than 5 actual side quest, and then a bunch of copy/paste of the same 3 minigames)



Posted by fillmoejoe

Could these be arcade DLC games or full on $60 games? I think they're arcade titles.

Posted by ectoplasma

I really liked Brutal Legend. And I like Tim Schaefer. Need moar!

Posted by DonutFever

Can't wait. They mentioned iPhone development, so I'm excited.

Posted by Southgrove

Awesome!

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