The video game industry in the Czech Republic has a strong tradition and a strong present – and now another part of a more interesting future is being added. Last year, the Ashborne game studio was established in Brno, as part of the powerful publisher THQ Nordic. Despite his youth, Ashburn has extensive experience, and most of the team consists of veterans from the largest local studio, Bohemia Interactive.
Big companies and small enterprises prove that good games are made here. Aforementioned interactive bohemia was best known for its series of military simulations a weapon It saw a very successful year in which the billion-dollar stake was sold to the Chinese holding company, Tencent. At Warhorse Studios, they create a wonderful medieval experience Come Kingdom: Deliverance Koch Media, part of the same THQ Nordic Group, bought the company for 1.1 billion.
On the other side of the spectrum, it’s important not to mention the creators from Amanita Design, who post even smart games like Chochel or Samorost With a charming atmosphere but also horror, or modern act Nebuchadnezzar From just two Czech authors presenting their shows under the brand Nepos Games
A new player will now try to break into such a star community. Ashburn Games It was founded last fall in Brno as an in-house studio of major video game publisher THQ Nordic. He has about 150 million crowns ready to finance the development of the first Ashburned game – a strategy game from a historical environment.
„But nThis is not a one-time investment. A very rough estimate is the cost of running the studio for the duration of the first project, “ Petr Kolá the, CEO of the company, is dedicated to CzechCrunch. “We have a standard contract with THQ Nordic, which pays us the tuition costs on an ongoing basis, while offering individual development stages,” Complete.
During last year’s meetings, meetings were held with other companies, and other cooperation variants were on the table. For example, direct investment or embedding in an existing game studio. Nonetheless, THQ Nordic Koláهe and colleagues gained through its approach. “We were more interested in almost the family atmosphere. They take very good care of their indoor studios.” a They support them in what developers do best – creating games. And the they The portfolio focuses on the species that interest us, ” Kolář reveals.
Additionally, good reviewers assisted in the final decision. “We mostly worked on the basis of some connections through people we know. In THQ Nordic’s case, it was David Dur iták, whom we have known for a long time,” Referring to the Slovak video game developer, who has been leading the Bratislava Nine Rocks games since the start of last year, Kolář also says under the banner THQ Nordic.
“He explained to us how they worked, and a discussion with their producers and management indicated that this is the path we want to take.” President Ashburn approaches. The so-called family ties within THQ Nordic were then strengthened by the fact that Durčák assists the newly created entity as a second agent. “We break down the company’s operations together regularly and give us great advice from the start. He even solves the course of study this way, and of course he has a lot of work to do in developing his own business,” Kolář completes.
Before founding Ashborne Games, Petr Kolář worked for Bohemia Interactive for ten years
It’s a bit overrated to say that from THQ Nordic, creating Ashborne games is a sure bet. The Petr Kolář team can boast of expertise in legendary development, for example The mafiaPart of a horror video game the silent Hill Or work addresses Energy a a weapon. Most of the workers came to Ashburn from “Bohemia”, which was behind the last two mentioned toys.
Coli also worked in it, but the situation in the company forced him to leave after more than ten years. “Bohemia Interactive is going through the transformation and I think it’s good for her. I couldn’t imagine it going forward He is Function. a Likewise, he was part of the people who decided Leave, Says studio director. At the same time, he notes that Tencent’s recent investment in a former employer did not influence the decision.
Peter Colay brought about thirty fellow ex-bohemians to Ashburn, and to date they work in Brno with a total of thirty-eight people. However, they have no plans for a further expansion; On the contrary, they like to maintain smaller studio status that people will still know each other well. After all, THQ Nordic also prefers such a philosophy.
The origin of the game? Like watching a sculptor
A gigantic team does not want to create a strategy with elements of RPGs, that is, “role-playing games”, in which the game’s characters and characteristics are gradually being improved. „but withAt the same time, we are in the development stage, where the idea of the game can change quickly. We have awesome designers coming up with interesting ideas, which you need to check out now. Lots of things look great on paper, but they don’t have to be sitting together in a game. That’s why it’s hard to say anything closer, “ Kolá explains.
„Sometimes it’s like watching a great sculptor – even though the head of the creative director is the clear vision he shares with the team, there is still a long time before the shapeless things become clear. “ Describes the origin of the game Kolář. The chief fictional game sculptor in Ashburn is fellow ex-Bohemia Interactive Karel Kališ, whom players might know as a designer. army or Energy.
So how long will we wait for more information on the upcoming title? „DrI would say we can expect some relevant announcements with details sometime next year, “ Kolář suggests. In addition, a few months of dryness of information will not be 100%. „Until then, we want to provide fans with behind-the-scenes information and maybe even snippets of information that we will be sure will not change. ” Add.
Plus, they’re currently working on something completely different in Ashborne games. After the German studio Nukklear, he took over the development of the motion simulator Comanche, In which players assume the role of a combat helicopter pilot of the same name. In Brno, they originally expanded their multiplayer relationship with a single-player game, which could be a beneficial training for Ashburne. Like their planned and hitherto unknown project Comanche Uses Unreal Engine technology.
Support from Warhorse Studios
This help is a logical consequence of making Ashborne Games under THQ Nordic, which launches the game from Nukklear. By the way, although its name doesn’t quite suggest it, THQ Nordic is an Austrian company. However, we can really find contact from the Nordic countries with him, his father carries the Embracer Group until recently under the name THQ Nordic AB and comes from Sweden.
In addition to Ashborne, THQ Nordic has a number of developers in Europe and the USA. Czech gamers are probably familiar with the name Piranha Bytes, authors of today’s cult trilogy of role-playing games. Gothic. Last year, THQ Nordic also founded the Bratislava Nine Rocks Games, led by the aforementioned David Dorrake, who along with Kolář, is Ashborne’s managing director.
The Czech game Kingdom Come: Deliverance is also appreciated for its realism
However, this does not end the company’s relationships, in embracing Embracer Group is also the already mentioned Prague Warhorse studio. Ashborne Games want to work with him, too. „We are already BThey visited their offices, which in itself was inspiring. Warhorse product Martin Klima looked at a rough prototype of our game and gave us some valuable suggestions, Kolář says.
„even in nám nAbidel use Their backgroundAnd the For example Sound recording studios a animation. I am in order to help them Warhorse Studios are grateful. ” Peter Colach concludes. We can only add that help and support from historical hit authors like Come Kingdom: Deliverance It could mean a brighter future for a game set in real history. Even for the Czech games industry this way.