EA Partners Inks Publishing Deal With Epic, Grasshopper

Electronic Arts has signed publishing deals with Grasshopper Manufacture and Epic Games via its EA Partners label, distributing forthcoming action titles on next-gen platforms with both studios - and Gamasutra was on-hand for the announcement.
Electronic Arts has inked deals with two new partners in Grasshopper Manufacture and Epic Games, the company announced today at its Bay Area showcase event attended by Gamasutra. Under a new studio deal, EA Partners will publish a new "action-horror" title, produced by Resident Evil creator Shinji Mikami and directed by renowned designer Goichi "Suda51" Suda, of Killer 7 (pictured) and No More Heroes fame. Suda51 and Mikami appeared on stage at the EA event, and Suda was typically ebullient, noting: "My studio creates games in a punk style... this is our tenth year and look where I am today... I'm very happy with EAP's support." As for the title, apart from it being revealed as a "mysterious very unique horror packed action game," it was announced that it will debut on PC, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Wii, and that Q Entertainment (Lumines) helped broker the deal and will work with Grasshopper and EAP on the game. Suda commented of the announcement: "I want to talk more about the game but I'm not allowed to, I'm sorry", adding: "It's very unusual for a Japanese developer to be working with a Western developer... just like there's Ichiro with the Seattle Mariners, now we have Grasshopper with EA in San Francisco." As for EA's partnership with Epic, it comprises a publishing agreement for an action title on PC, Xbox 360 and PS3 -- it's based on a new IP and is in development with Polish Painkiller developer People Can Fly, who also worked on the PC version of Gears of War. At the announcement event attended by Gamasutra, Epic's Mike Capps appeared with a, "Hey, surprise!" He told attendees that he approached People Can Fly, which the Gears Of War creator owns a majority stake in, and told them, "We said, here's buckets of money -- make a new IP, make something as cool as Painkiller." Frank Gibeau, president of the EA Games label, commented in a prepared statement released concurrently with the press conference, "In the last year, EAP has become a powerhouse player in the publishing world with the best of breed developers signing on to leverage EA’s studio-focused philosophy, global scale and publishing leadership."

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