A group of industry veterans with experience on titles such as Journey, What Remains of Edith Finch and Spider-Man have launched a new remote studio, gardens.
The studio is co-founded by Chris Bell (Journey, What Remains of Edith Finch, Sky: Children of the Light, Way), Lexie Dostal (Dustforce), and Stephen Bell (Blaseball, What Remains of Edith Finch. These co-founders are joined by a development team with experience on titles like Spider-Man, Ratchet & Clank, Skyrim, the Fallout series.
Gardens, which pledges to be transparent, sustainable, inclusive and empowering, describes its core mission as to “create vibrant online games that foster meaningful multiplayer moments and relationships between players around the world.”
“With Gardens, we wanted to create a studio that cares as much about the health, happiness, and wellbeing of its team members as we do the craftsmanship of the games we create together,” said co-founder Chris Bell. “Our top priority is making sure our teammates enjoy their lives and are given the tools and resources to grow while creating compelling, well-crafted, thoughtful games that cultivate novel shared experiences between players online. ”
Gardens is a remote studio, but mainly based in Portland and Los Angeles.
The studio takes its name from the kind of worlds it wishes to create – artfully-crafted, living environments designed to foster multiplayer interaction while relying on care by their communities in order to thrive. The concept is to build games that promote lasting friendships, and encouraging players to be considerate of each other and the world around them.
“I decided to join Gardens after my first meeting with the founders,” said Sarah Sands, executive producer at Gardens. “They’re such genuine and thoughtful leaders who understood all the reasons I left the games industry, and explained why and how they were going to do things differently at Gardens. I’m thankful every day that I get to help build a studio that is focused as much on creating an inclusive environment where everyone feels valued and respected as it is on creating amazing innovative games.”