Digital Arts is opening a brand new workplace within the Seattle space, with former V1 Interactive head and Halo co-creator Marcus Lehto as its recreation director.



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The brand new studio is engaged on “first-person video games,” based on a tweet from Lehto, who will reportedly be working beneath EA’s Vince Zampella, the top of Apex Legends developer Respawn Leisure.

Lehto was the artwork director at Bungie Studios from 1997 to 2012, the place he helped to design lots of the characters and automobiles that will go on to turn out to be a mainstay of the collection, together with its protagonist the Grasp Chief. Lehto’s initials and birthday can each be discovered as Easter eggs on numerous in-game fashions within the unique 2001 Halo: Fight Developed.

Extra just lately, Lehto was the studio head at V1 Interactive in Redmond, Wash., which developed the 2020 tactical shooter Disintegration. V1 Interactive closed down in March.

That is the second new workplace Digital Arts has opened within the Seattle space in 2021. In Could, it quietly tapped former Monolith VPs Kevin Stephens and Samantha Ryan to move up an unnamed studio, with plans to create an open-world action-adventure recreation. EA beforehand had a satellite tv for pc workplace in Seattle, which primarily labored on the Want for Velocity racing franchise earlier than closing in 2002.

Digital Arts, based in 1982, may be greatest recognized by its initials. It’s at present the second largest third-party developer within the trendy online game trade, behind Name of Responsibility writer Activision Blizzard, with a number of profitable franchises that embody The Sims, Star Wars, Mass Impact, Dragon Age, Titanfall, and the annually-updated Madden and FIFA sports activities simulators.

As Lehto alluded to in September, EA is a mildly controversial determine within the trendy video games trade. It was one of many first studios to be hit with complaints of “crunch tradition,” as a part of the nameless ea_spouse complaints in 2004; it’s infamous for buying unbiased studios, then operating them into the bottom; and it was one of many largest corporations concerned within the points that surrounded “lootboxes” in 2019. It additionally makes and markets a few of the hottest video games on this planet, nevertheless, and normally has at the very least two best-sellers in any given yr’s prime 10 record.

EA is headquartered in Redwood Metropolis, Calif., with North American subsidiaries in Orlando, Vancouver, Baton Rouge, Los Angeles, and Sacramento. It additionally owns the casual-gaming firm PopCap, the Vegetation vs. Zombies maker based in Seattle and purchased by EA in 2011. PopCap has places of work in Seattle, Vancouver, and Hyderabad, India.

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