Twitch streamers Mike "Shroud" Grzesiek and Chris "Sacriel" Ball are partnering with Splash Damage to develop an new open-world survival-shooter that studio CEO Richard Jolly said is "truly different from anything we've done before."
Details about the new project, currently known as Project Astrid, weren't revealed in the announcement. Maybe they'll make a survival game where people grow community crops and restore the power grid and sewage systems? Eh, probably not. Whatever it ultimately turns out to be, Splash Damage said the collaboration with Shroud and Sacriel represents "an exciting new era" for the studio. It also credited the pair as "core members" of the development team, who bring a "unique perspective" to the development process through their experience "as players, streamers, subject matter experts, and community builders and leaders."
"This project means everything to me," Shroud said. "Chris and I have refined a vision for what's next in the survival genre and with Splash Damage we're setting out to build it. We want to build the best survival game ever, and with Sacriel's brain and Splash Damage's team, I know we can do it."
"Mike and I have been envisioning a world where we help build the game that streamers and gamers love playing," Sacriel said, calling the project "a dream come true."
"To be able to execute with a team as esteemed and experienced as Splash Damage is a privilege. In our work together to date, it is clear to us that we are truly part of the team and that we are well positioned to help bring this dream to reality."
Shroud is a former Counter-Strike pro, and both he and Sacriel are known for streaming PUBG and DayZ. They have a significant audience between them: Sacriel has 713,000 followers on Twitch, while Shroud has 10.5 million, making him one of the most popular streamers on the platform.
Splash Damage was founded in 2001 and is known primarily for online shooters: It contributed to Return to Castle Wolfenstein's multiplayer (which for the record was excellent) before heading up development on Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory (opens in new tab) and Enemy Territory: Quake Wars, Brink (opens in new tab), and Dirty Bomb (opens in new tab). Amidst all that, it also developed the multiplayer components of Doom 3, Batman: Arkham Origins, Gears of War 4, and Gears 5. The studio tried something a little different with its most recent release, the top-down "party shooter" Outcasters (opens in new tab), but that fell victim to the collapse of Stadia in 2022.
"This new era of Splash Damage is about doing things differently, but also owning the entire process, from concept to publishing," Splash Damage head of publishing Dave Miller said. "Bringing in the guys right at the start of the process allows us to use their knowledge and experience, collaborating with them to make something truly unique in the genre."
Splash Damage said Shroud and Sacriel "will be discussing the announcement on their streams." At this moment, they're playing DayZ together on Twitch (Shroud's channel (opens in new tab), Sacriel's channel (opens in new tab)) and discussing The Mandalorian.