Hellblade Senua’s Sacrifice Developer Explains Why It Joined Microsoft Studios

Microsoft is fresh off the hype from one of their biggest E3 2018 press conference ever. It caught us by surprise when the company announced during the Xbox E3 conference that it has acquired over five game studios, four of which are established developers while one is newly-established. That list includes Undead Labs, Compulsion Games, Playground Games and Hellblade Senua’s Sacrifice developer Ninja Theory.

Ninja Theory is a well-established game developer, best known for the most recent award-winning game Hellbalde Senua’s Sacrifice, as well as 2010’s Enslaved Odyssey to the West and 2013’s DMC: Devil May Cry reboot. After the shocking announcement at the Xbox E3 press conference, the games studio released a video in which it explains the reason for why it joined Microsoft Studios, as well as why that would be a good thing.

In the video, Ninja Theory creative lead Tameem Antoniades said: “When Microsoft approached us, it was totally unexpected and not something we were really looking to do. Nevertheless, they asked us what our goals and ambitions were as a studio in an ideal world, and so we said we wanted to free from the AAA machine and make games focused on the experience, not around monetization.”

Antoniades continued: “We want to take bigger creative risks, and creative genre-defining games without the constant threat of annihilation. We want to make our own games our own way, and not be told what to make and how to make it, and above all, we want to protect our team, our culture, and our identity because that, in essence, is Ninja Theory.”

Ninja Theory E3 2018: Why It Benefits The Developer

The developer asked for “full creative independence” from Microsoft. The reply Ninja Theory received was that it “could have all of that”, along with all of Microsoft’s “marketing teams, support teams, research and technology groups.” That kind of resource will definitely benefit the developer in many ways, ensuring more games in the future.

Commercial director Dominic Matthews teased us with a glimpse of a better future by saying: “Hellblade was created with a small team of just 20 people and extremely limited resources. Imagine what we can now achieve with our whole team of 100 people backed by Microsoft focused purely on Ninja Theory’s vision.”