Respawn have announced, in an interview with Gamesindustry.biz, that they are opening a new studio in Vancouver that will focus on the continuing development of battle royale title Apex Legends.
This is the company’s second location, joining the California studio, and will be led by head of operations Henry Lee and team director Steven Ferreira. The new studio is intended to lessen the pressure on the California team, give Respawn access to a wider area of talent, and boost support for Apex Legends.
“At Respawn we’ve already got a lot of innovations underway,” said Lee. “The trouble is we can’t do all the innovations we want — there are just too many,” they commented. “How do you choose which ones to run with, and which ones are best for the game? Building a team in Vancouver is only going to help us bring more to the game.”
“This is a great opportunity, not just for the Vancouver studio to bring some new creative challenges to people already there, but also to the local industry in terms of being part of the Apex Legends roadmap. So we’re very excited about bringing this to Vancouver and hopefully greater Canada as well, because we can tap into much more of a talent base broadly.”
Lee suggested that the new studio could allow Respawn to take a long-term strategy which the battle royale title, which has previously had to limit updates to the game in order to prioritise the developer’s quality of life.
“We have a long-term view for where we’d like to take the franchise, and EA supports that long-term view of building out the franchise. FIFA didn’t grow to be the juggernaut it is today in one night. Call of Duty — something near and dear to many of us on this call back in our Activision days — didn’t grow there in one night. It took time to get there, so we have that realistic long-term view, and I appreciate the support from EA and the lack of pressure.”