Recently, a report by Game Industry confirmed that EA made the decision to cancel the Project Cars franchise and its next installment, which was criticized by Slightly Mad Studios’ founder and former CEO who already had a fight with EA back in the Need For Speed Shift era (courtesy of VGC).
In a recent tweet, Ian Bell said he still stands on what he has said about Electronic Arts after the Need For Speed Shift 3 controversy, and EA is actually now proving that those words were correct. Bell asked EA to consider the developers of Slightly Mad Studios and their families affected by the recent decision rather than the sales numbers.
Slightly Mad Studios rose to fame by developing Need For Speed Shift and Need For Speed Shift 2: Unleashed for Electronic Arts, both of which became popular titles, despite being far away from Need For Speed’s illegal racing DNA.
According to Bell, the studio accepted an offer for Shift 3 from Electronic Arts, but the company canceled the project only a few weeks before starting the production phase, leaving Slightly Mad Studios in a financial crisis. Bell claimed at the time that EA has done it with the purpose to force Slightly Mad Studios to become a subsidiary of the company, but the studio remained independent until it was acquired by Codemasters for $30 million in 2019. When Electronic Arts acquired Codemasters and became the official owner of Slightly Mad Studios, Ian Bell left the studio almost 6 months after the acquisition.
Currently, Ian Bell is working with a team of original GTR developers to revive this franchise and bring a sequel to GTR 2, which is apparently going to be called GTR Revolution. No more details have been shared by Ian Bell about the project so far.
With the recent shutdown of Project Cars, Electronic Arts claimed that the affected developers will be moved to other studios wherever possible, but the future of Slightly Mad Studios remains unclear as their next game was canceled. With the acquisition of Codemasters, Need For Speed fans were hoping to finally get the Shift 3 done by Slightly Mad Studios.
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