Belarus-based World of Tanks creator Wargaming has announced the surprise acquisition of Chicago-based FEAR 3 developer Day 1 Studios.
The free-to-play MMO developer and publisher paid $20 million for Day 1, which will now be called Wargaming West and focus “exclusively on the development of an unannounced console title”. It’s currently recruiting across a range of disciplines and invites interested parties to apply to join its “next-gen revolution”.
Wargaming CEO Victor Kislyi said: "The move into console game development is a huge step for Wargaming, as we begin to expand our presence into new platforms. We are looking forward to sharing the fruits of our labor soon.”
Denny Thorley, the ex-FASA Interactive veteran who co-founded Day 1 in 2001, has been appointed as head of Wargaming’s Chicago-based studio. He said: "Wargaming is a clear leader in the free-to-play space and helps set the standard on which all other games in the genre strive for. Our team is extremely excited to start the first console project for Wargaming.”
As an independent studio Day 1 worked on Xbox exclusives MechAssault and MechAssault 2: Lone Wolf. It then teamed with Monolith Productions to make the console ports of FEAR, developed original IP Fracture for LucasArts, and later FEAR 3. In late 2011 it suffered significant layoffs following the loss of a publishing deal with Konami.