After Activision canceled True Crime: Hong Kong for quality reasons, many assumed that that was it for the game, and the series. But if you were excited about the game, then an unlikely hero has stepped forward: Square Enix has bought the rights to the game – but not the franchise.
Speaking to Gamasutra, Square Enix’s London Studios general manager Lee Singleton said:
When we first saw and got our hands on the game we fell in love with it.
It’s one of those games where you don’t want to put the controller down; it’s what we call ‘sticky’.
He also mentioned that it had an “incredible new game engine, rich new story with deep and complex characters, and gameplay features which have simply never been seen at this level in an open world game,” that made Square Enix “jump all over it.”
United Front, the developers of ModNation Racers, are continuing development of the game, but it will now be managed through Square Enix London Studios. Square Enix haven’t bought the entire True Crime IP, and the game will even be rebranded with the title removed, something that Singleton said would be “pretty straightforward.”
CEO of Activision Publishing, Eric Hirshberg, said:
Our team has worked very hard to find a solution where everybody wins. Square Enix gets the benefit of the tremendous investment we’ve made in the game thus far. UFG gets to stay together and complete their vision. And gamers get to play a great game. We couldn’t be more thrilled.
The game was originally due out this November for PC, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3, but Singleton said that “We’re not talking about release timings or formats at this time.”