Redfall co-op was inspired by Diablo, Borderlands, and Dungeons & Dragons

Redfall key art
(Image credit: Bethesda)

Dishonored and Prey studio Arkane is diving back into co-op with its upcoming open-world shooter Redfall, and in a new exclusive interview with GamesRadar+ – as part of our Big in 2023: Redfall deep dive – the developers discuss the classic multiplayer games that inspired them.

Redfall isn't Arkane's first foray into cooperative multiplayer, with 2019's Wolfenstein: Young Blood being the most recent example. The studio's 2021 first-person shooter Deathloop has a multiplayer element, but it's more akin to Elden Ring's where players can spontaneously invade other players' games. With Redfall, the developers were inspired by games they've been playing together for many years.

"I can remember, as far back as working on Deus Ex – us as a group playing Diablo together, and then through the years then playing Diablo 2 together and then playing, you know, Borderlands and there's just all these games that are super fun to play co-op, that when we're not working on our kind of game we're like playing these kinds of games together as friends," said co-creative director Ricardo Bare. "And we were like, 'How can we have our peanut butter and chocolate together? Like, can we make the kind of games that we like, but somehow play them together?"

As for studio director Harvey Smith, there's only one game that came to mind when he was asked about Redfall's co-op inspirations: Dungeons & Dragons.  

"I live in constant fear that people are going to figure out that we're just D&D players who think video games could be cooler and deeper," said Smith. "D&D is the best co-op game of all time, and I think people would be shocked if they knew how much we have all played D&D together as a group, from Origin Systems to ION Storm to Arkane. I am currently in three different D&D campaigns, and I still play with Ricardo on Monday nights."

All throughout January, GamesRadar+ is exploring the most anticipated games of the year. For more, be sure to visit our Big in 2023 coverage hub.

Jordan Gerblick

After scoring a degree in English from ASU, I worked as a copy editor while freelancing for places like SFX Magazine, Screen Rant, Game Revolution, and MMORPG on the side. Now, as GamesRadar's west coast Staff Writer, I'm responsible for managing the site's western regional executive branch, AKA my apartment, and writing about whatever horror game I'm too afraid to finish.