Home Games Bethesda forces Arkane to name its addictive simulator “Prey”

Bethesda forces Arkane to name its addictive simulator “Prey”

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Rafael Calantonio founded Arkane Studios back in 1999 and remained the company’s president and creative director until 2017, shortly after the launch of their underrated first-person immersion simulator Prey. Appearing as a guest on an episode of the Game Maker’s Notebook podcast hosted by the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences, Calantonio detailed how he didn’t want to call the game Prey, but was forced to do so by Bethesda, the studio at the time, and the current parent company.

It was previously revealed that Prey was being developed as its own original IP, but was then slightly tweaked to market it as a reimagining of the 2006 title of the same name. The original was developed by Human Head Studios and published by 2K, however the rights to the franchise were acquired by Bethesda Softworks in 2009. A sequel was in development, but was later canceled, and somewhere along the way, Bethesda decided to modernize Arkane as a Prey game.

Calantonio was candid on this recent podcast, expressing his disappointment, stating that the game they’re making is in no way related to 2006’s Prey. He explained that he still resents this decision for various reasons. First, he had to tell reporters that he really wanted to call the game Prey. He said he hated lies and proclaimed how bad it was to support a message he didn’t believe. But it was not only the president of Arkane. According to him, “nobody on the team wanted to call the game Prey.”

He expressed his gratitude for the financial security of being able to make a game like 2017’s Prey, as it’s not a traditional action game and even deviates significantly from Arkane’s critically acclaimed Dishonored series. Despite this, his creative side felt insulted by the suggestion, as he considered the name decision to be wrong. He explained how he felt this ended up hurting their marketing, as fans of the 2006 game wouldn’t be happy with the “reboot” and those who didn’t like the original would immediately dismiss this one. Sales ended “terribly,” he said.

While this issue with the title was not the specific reason for Calantonio’s departure from Arkane, he stated that he felt he no longer had the artistic freedom he was promised when the studio was acquired by Bethesda back in 2010. Calantonio founded a new studio back in 2019 called Wolf Eye Studios, where he hopes to do things differently and avoid the trappings of corporate publishing while remaining independent.

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Related forum: Xbox forum

The source: https://www.dualshockers.com/bethesda-forced-arkane-to-call-its-immersive-sim-prey/

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