Wizards of the Coast is making a big-budget G.I. Joe game

Alkaphonio's GI Joe character pool mod for XCOM 2
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Mega-toy brand Hasbro has, through its games division Wizards of the Coast, opened a videogame studio that is "led by industry veterans from WB Games and other AAA studios". That's according to the job description attached to several listings for new roles. The studio, just referred to as "New Raleigh-Durham Studio", will be making a G.I. Joe game as its first project.

The job ads call it a "AAA 3rd Person Action/Adventure game", as well as confirming it will be multi-platform. Qualifications mentioned in the listings for four roles (technical director, art director, lead game designer, and lead animator) ask for experience with the Unreal engine, as well as knowledge of broad videogame elements like "progression" and "exploration mechanics".

A third-person action game seems like a decent fit for G.I. Joe, though I think it would be perfect for a turn-based tactics game where you take over Cobra Island with a squad of specialists who, unlike XCOM grunts, all have established skills and personalities—wait, I think I just invented Jagged Alliance.

During a Hasbro investor event earlier this year (opens in new tab), Wizards of the Coast president Chris Cocks talked about "leveraging some perennial Hasbro favorites with an eye towards developing them digitally", saying, "We will bring these brands to digital life and develop experiences that resonate with the lifestyle gamer in ways that are new, fresh and provocative." The Hasbro brands he mentioned were G.I. Joe, Transformers, Micronauts, and Ouija—as in Ouija board, which, yes, is a brand and Hasbro has owned the trademark to it since 1948 (opens in new tab)

Jody Macgregor
Weekend/AU Editor

Jody's first computer was a Commodore 64, so he remembers having to use a code wheel to play Pool of Radiance. A former music journalist who interviewed everyone from Giorgio Moroder to Trent Reznor, Jody also co-hosted Australia's first radio show about videogames, Zed Games (opens in new tab). He's written for Rock Paper Shotgun (opens in new tab), The Big Issue, GamesRadar (opens in new tab), Zam (opens in new tab), Glixel (opens in new tab), Five Out of Ten Magazine (opens in new tab), and Playboy.com (opens in new tab), whose cheques with the bunny logo made for fun conversations at the bank. Jody's first article for PC Gamer was about the audio of Alien Isolation, published in 2015, and since then he's written about why Silent Hill belongs on PC, why Recettear: An Item Shop's Tale is the best fantasy shopkeeper tycoon game, and how weird Lost Ark can get. Jody edited PC Gamer Indie from 2017 to 2018, and he eventually lived up to his promise to play every Warhammer videogame.