In a recent interview, CCP Games CEO Hilmar Velgar revealed that CCP Games will be stepping away from development of virtual reality games for a few years to refocus on PC and mobile titles. CCP has been a frontrunner in the development of recent VR titles such as EVE: Valkyrie, EVE: Gunjack, and their recent self-proclaimed ‘vSport’, Sparc. While these games have been successful for CCP, Hilmar explains that CCP will not be pursuing development for the VR market for the next 2-3 years but remains committed to VR in the long run. This recent shift will see the closure of their Atlanta studio, and the sale of their Newcastle studio — both studios were developing Sparc and Valkyrie respectfully which will affect approximately 100 employees. CCP states there will be options for some personnel to move to the remaining studios.
A post on the EVE: Valkyrie official forum further explains that Valkyrie will not be shut down and that instead, the Newcastle studio will continue to work on the game under the ownership of a new company. This is an odd shift given that the game has the EVE title tied to it but will no longer be overseen by CCP Games. As of the writing of this article, there has been no official statement on the Sparc forums regarding the future of the game, however as the Atlanta studio currently working on the game is being completely shut down, it seems likely that any future support (if any) will be deployed out a different CCP Studio. Additionally, the studio in Shanghai will still remain but shift to support for players and away from direct game development.
CCP will instead be focusing on PC and mobile titles in the short run, which is in line with the recent announcement at EVE Vegas regarding Project Nova being developed for PC and Project Aurora being developed for mobile platforms. Both of these new titles mark a shift in philosophy for CCP in that they are contracting part of the production to 3rd party developers. This, paired with the recent slimming of global studios, may mark a shift in CCP’s corporate philosophy to instead run a centralized operation out of Iceland and work with 3rd party developers and manufacturers in future projects.