According to reports in British trade paper MCV, publisher Sega is planning to set up a new development studio in central England, dedicated to producing next generation racing games using some of the company’s most successful intellectual properties.
Sheffield-based developer Sumo Digital was responsible for the well-received port of OutRun 2
onto the Xbox, and Sega seem to have been impressed enough with this work to court other developers from the same area. Job advertisements for the new studio suggest that it will be working on other successful franchises such as Sega Rally
and Crazy Taxi
– as well as brand new properties.
The publisher is currently attempting to build a core team for the studio and select a new office. The move follows increased activity by Sega in Europe, as the company has published a number of atypical PC titles such as Football Manager 2005
and Immortal Cities: Children of the Nile
The company has repeatedly stated that this is merely the first step in increasing Sega’s profile in the West, in terms of both consumers and developers.
“To be competitive with the top publishing companies, we are of course looking to expand our in-house development resources further to become a major global player,” commented Sega of Europe consultant Guy Wilday.