Phantom Dust remake studio shuts down after Microsoft pulls project
February 18, 2015 | 12:03
The studio behind the Xbox One reboot of Phantom Dust, Darkside Game Studios, has closed its doors following Microsoft's decision to take the project away from the developer.
According to Kotaku, approximately 50 people have lost their jobs at Darkside. Phantom Dust was to be the studio's first solo project and previously it had carried out contract work on other triple-A titles, including Sunset Overdrive, Bioshock Infinite, X-COM: Enemy Unknown and Borderlands. The project being taken away from the studio was apparently a surprise to those working on the title.
Despite Microsoft's decision to end its relationship with the studio, Phantom Dust as a project has not been officially cancelled although Microsoft will not confirm who will be taking over or if they will be using assets already developed by Darkside.
'Microsoft partnered with Darkside Game Studios in the development of Phantom Dust, but our working relationship has now ended,' said a Microsoft spokesperson. 'We have great respect for their studio and their work in the industry. While we do not have anything new to share on 'Phantom Dust' at this time, we can confirm that development of the title continues.'
Exactly why Microsoft decided to end its relationship with Darkside is unclear.
The original Phantom Dust was released in 2004 for the original Xbox and is an unusual hybrid of action card-based strategy game. The title was developed by Yukio Futatsugi of Panzer Dragoon fame. The remake was announced during E3 2014 and accompanied by a cinematic trailer.