In what I would have to call the unexpected rumor of the day, and perhaps the year, it's come to light that a new Thief game may be in development. Interestingly, word of the new game came not from Eidos Montreal or Square Enix, but from the website of production company Straight Up Films, which is working on the movie that was announced last year.
"Thief is an action epic poised to be the next great multi-platform franchise," the site says. "Originally released in 1998 by Eidos Interactive (Deus Ex) and distributed by Square Enix (Tomb Raider, Final Fantasy), the Thief series has spanned over fifteen years and four sequels continually retaining loyal audiences and attracting new fans with each iteration. Widely considered to be one of the greatest games ever created, a fifth sequel is currently in development to be released in step with this motion picture adaptation."
I'm a big Thief fan from way back, and I wholeheartedly agree that the first two games are among the finest stealth experiences ever created. (The third wasn't bad, either.) Even so, Straight Up's description is a huge oversell: As good as it was, the Thief series has never achieved more than cult status. It's no coincidence that two out of three Thief studios—Looking Glass and Ion Storm Austin—went under shortly after releasing them, right?
Personally, I would love to dig into a new Thief, but only under very specific circumstances, namely that it brings back Garrett and picks up at the end of Thief 2: The Metal Age. That's obviously not going to happen, but dare to dream. Speaking of which, in response to mny inquiry, a Square Enix rep said only, "We don't have anything to announce at this time."