May 23, 2022

Criterion Games Reclaims Need For Speed Development

So, EA has decided to return the Need for Speed franchise back to Criterion Games. It’s a good time for Guildford-based games developers.

Following some internal restructuring within EA, the Need for Speed franchise is set to return to Criterion Games.

According to a report by GamesIndustry.biz, current developers Ghost Game will become part of EA’s larger infrastructure. As such, EA will rebrand Ghost as “EA Gothenburg”. The newly rechristened studio will refocus itself as an engineering hub supporting EA’s development portfolio.

EA told GamesIndustry.biz;

“The engineering expertise in our Gothenburg team [Ghost Games], some of whom are architects of the Frostbite engine, is vital to a number of our ongoing projects, and they would remain in that location”.

Criterion was responsible for Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit and Most Wanted, as well as the Burnout series. Following EA’s decision to get Ghost Games to work on the NFS series, the franchise’s luck started to run dry. EA claims they were unable to bring enough talent to the Swedish-based studio.

NFS Returns to Guildford

EA stated;

“With a strong history and passion for racing games and vision for what we can create, the Criterion team is going to take Need for Speed into the next-generation.

Criterion is a fantastic studio, and we’re looking forward to adding to their talented team and building a great future for Need for Speed.  The engineering teams in Gothenburg are also vital to our ongoing plans across EA”.

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No news yet as to when the next Need for Speed game will be announced, especially considering the studio swapping going on. However, the franchise’s most recent entry, Heat, only came out the tail end of last year. So, if you’re pining for some Need for Speed style fun, it’s still quite fresh.


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