Director Jeff Ross has said ‘never say never’ when it comes to Days Gone 2, as he admits, ‘Sony doesn’t have the cash that Microsoft does.’
The idea that a sequel to Days Gone is not a dead cert has been a surprise to almost everyone, given that while the original had mixed reviews from critics it seemed to be financially successful.
But a Bloomberg report last week suggested that plans for a follow-up were turned down by Sony, when developer Sony Bend pitched the idea, although a new interview with original director Jeff Ross leaves at least a sliver of hope for fans.
Speaking in a podcast with former Sony developer David Jaffe, about Sony not greenlighting smaller scale games, Ross said that, ‘Never say never to anything, it’s just… maybe not right now.’
Although Ross recently left Sony Bend, to work at Mortal Kombat developer NetherRealm, he still had to be careful about what he said for legal reasons. But while he never explicitly confirmed or denied rumours about the sequel’s cancellation, he did admit that he pitched the project to Sony.
That pitch included plans for ‘a shared universe with co-op play’, something that was originally intended for the original – as the character of Boozer always implied.
Ross described the concept as featuring, ‘guys like Deacon trying to survive, building up a clubhouse or a crew. I think it would be fun to be in that world cooperatively and see what horde battles could be like.’
Rather than the pitch being at fault, Ross implied that the main problem with the sequel was simply that, while it was financially successful, the original didn’t make enough money to justify a follow-up.
‘Unfortunately for Sony, they’ve made their name in the last 10 years on these super-polished, emotionally engrossing single-player games and they sell really well and make a ton of money. But they don’t bring in the Fortnite money through renewables, so they have to be careful’, said Ross.
‘Sony doesn’t have the cash that Microsoft does and they’ve got to use it very intelligently and they’ve got to stay focused on a diverse portfolio.’
Although he was careful what he said about Days Gone 2, Ross did confirm other aspects of the original Bloomberg report, including Sony Bend working with Naughty Dog – allegedly on a new Uncharted game.
However, he downplayed suggestions that Sony Bend was in danger of becoming a support studio for Naughty Dog, for which Bloomberg journalist Jason Schrier had a very robust response on ResetEra.
‘If he said that Bend was ‘never’ going to become a Naughty Dog support studio, he was making an overstatement about decisions that’d be made over his head in the first place’, said Schrier, who stated he had not watched the podcast.
‘Someone at Naughty Dog told me a couple of weeks ago that they already half-jokingly refer to Bend as Naughty Dog North. Would that actually happen? I have no idea, and neither does Jeff Ross.’
Ross’ comments on how likely a Days Gone sequel is in the long-term could be read either way, but it certainly suggests that whatever Sony Bend’s next game is, it’s not Days Gone 2.
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