Firemint and Iron Monkey, two of EA’s most prominent development studios responsible for mobile hits Flight Control, Real Racing, The Sims Free Play and Mass Effect Infiltrator, have combined to form one giant studio.
It’s now called Firemonkeys, and will be based out of Melbourne (making EA Melbourne Australia’s largest developer). It’s going to concentrate on existing IP as well as new development projects.
This is fairly significant news when you consider the ramifications behind it. The combined teams makes Firemonkeys a very large mobile studio with a lot of talented developers. The shared resources will likely result in even bigger projects.
Chair and Gameloft are also developers of substantial size in the mobile space, but Firemonkeys may well be the first mobile developer to be responsible for genuine AAA-game iPad/ iPhone development. Imagine a game like Real Racing or Mass Effect Infiltrator, but twice as big. It’s an exciting thought.
if they are backed by EA they have a great chance at success. Im interested in seeing what they come out with
They also have a good chance of becoming the next Bioware; a company that started out good with EA and then became increasingly more "Not Good" as EA forced them to make stupid design decisions.
As for my thoughts otherwise? I'm interested to see where it goes. I've heard good things about both developers and I wonder what will be their first project as major, publisher-backed, and unified developer.
Bleh! I'm more interested in the indies.
I reckon they should fire a few more people to go even stronger.
I've not heard of any firings – the guys behind Puzzle Quest, who merged with Firemint, have split away again, but other than that all I've seen is job postings.
Do you have evidence?