By Joseph Leray
In the aftermath of THQ’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings, “Darksiders” developer Vigil Games fell through the crack. Not only did the studio not find a buyer during yesterday’s piecemeal auction, no one bid on the company or its games at all, according to investment blogger DDInvesting.
As of right now, Vigil Games (which was owned by THQ) will continue with the Chapter 11 process. There may still be a buyer for the Darksiders license, but the studio is effectively finished.
Vigil’s lead combat designer Ben Cureton took to NeoGAF to mourn the loss, praising the team that had built “Darksiders” and its sequel, “Darksiders 2”: “Am I sad I don’t have a job? Not really … I’m sure I’ll get another one eventually,” he writes. “I’m sad because it won’t be THIS job. It won’t be at Vigil … these people will never be together again in the same combination.”
According to Cureton, the team at Vigil were working on an unannounced game codenamed “Crawler,” though it’s not clear if this was a new property or another “Darksiders” game. “I knew, without a shadow of the doubt, that the project we were working on was going to blow people away,” he writes. “In fact, it DID blow people away. We did, in TWO months, what many companies haven’t done in a year.”
“The pride of knowing that no one was doing anything like us was so satisfying, it kept us coming to work and giving 100% every single day.”
This sentiment echoes statements made by Haydn Dalton, the lead designer for the “Darksiders” series: “There was a shimmer on a slither of hope, that at one point, there’d be a ‘Darksiders III’: 4 Player Co-Op; It rode off into the sunset today,” he tweeted.
Cureton concludes that “Vigil was filled with people that I would put up against the best in the industry. People that made my work better, people that made me a better designer, and people that made me a better person. And now they’re gone.”
While Vigil Games as it existed will almost surely be no more, there’s still potential for more “Darksiders,” and some of the designers who worked on it. Atsushi Inaba, executive producer and head of “Bayonetta” developer Platinum Games, expressed interest in buying the property, and Platinum’s writer and talent scout JP Kellams invited Dalton and Cureton to send in resumes.
Here’s hoping Vigil’s staff, and the game they worked so hard to create, land on their feet.