Toy maker Funko Pop wants to crack the game market with a new triple-A game project.
Breaking the news at San Diego Comic-Con over the weekend, Funko revealed it's partnering with developer 10:10 Games to create a "triple-A action platformer with major third-party studio integration." According to a press release, the project is scheduled to release in 2023 for the current generation of consoles and PC.
Funko Pop figurines have become hot collector's items since debuting in 2011. The figures cover a range of pop culture characters and icons including industry figureheads like Steven Spielberg, influential mascots such as Mickey Mouse, and more recent properties like My Hero Academia. Multiple video game franchises such as Halo and Ratchet & Clank also have licensed Funko Pop figures.
Commenting on Funko's partnership with 10:10, company CEO Andrew Perlmutte said the move will allow the pair to "connect fans to their favorite fandoms."
"By partnering with 10:10 Games and utilizing the best creators in the business, we will have the talent to deliver games that reflect Funko’s unique look and feel across its lines and varied products," he added.
10:10 games was established in 2021 by Jon Burton, who founded Traveller's Tales and its parent studio, TT Games. Prior to forming 10:10 he worked as a designer on several Lego games, beginning with Lego Indiana Jones. He departed TT in 2017 following the release of Lego Worlds.
Earlier this year, TT Games was hit with allegations of crunch culture spanning several years and most of its Lego projects.
In a company statement, 10:10's design director Arthur Parsons praised Funko as "an iconic brand that truly understands the ingredients it takes to develop a world class video game."
Toys become games become stronger brands
Prior to this announcement, Funko's first foray into gaming was the short-lived Gears Pop!. Created by Mediatonic and Gears 5 developer The Coalition, the Windows PC and mobile game was a real-time strategy title set in the Gears of War universe.
Before its servers were shut down in April 2021, Gears Pop! had the distinction of being one of the few mobile games to incorporate Xbox achievements. The title, however, was available for just over a year, with Mediatonic suggesting it had to be shut down after long-term support became unviable.
Toys and collectibles becoming games is nothing new. The Lego brand has grown quite significantly through that avenue, working with studios and publishers to release multiple licensed and original games for decades.
The broad success of Lego's game projects indicates there's an appetite for games that leverage popular toy brands, although it'll be interesting to see whether Funko can carve out a similarly unique niche in the triple-A market.