Remedy Entertainment might be looking forward with Control, the mind-bending, telekentic new title it debuted at E3 2018, but fans of Alan Wake and Quantum Break (like me) are constantly looking back, wondering if we’ll ever get proper sequels to either title. Unfortunately, according to a recent interview, our very happiness depends on Microsoft.
Speaking to GamesIndustry.biz (via IGN), Remedy CEO Tero Virtala confirmed that the main reason the studio never made a sequel to either Alan Wake or Quantum Break is that Microsoft, who owns the intellectual property rights of both titles, never gave them the green light.
“Alan Wake was really interesting but it was a collaboration with Microsoft,” Virtala said. “Due to certain reasons, it never got a sequel. Quantum Break, also, we put a lot of effort into creating the world, the characters, the stories, but still it was Microsoft IP. They decided not to take it further.”
Thankfully, Control won’t have that same issue, as it sounds like Remedy has worked out a deal with publisher 505 Games that gives the studio control over the IP. The last time Remedy owned the IP to its own game was Max Payne and Max Payne 2, which it eventually sold to Rockstar Games. Thankfully, Rockstar knows how to make good games, so Max Payne 3 wasn’t a total disaster, but the same couldn’t be assumed about any Quantum Break or Alan Wake sequels that Microsoft might decide to make in the future.
It sounds like Remedy has big plans for Control and its future games, now that it has a better understanding of the industry’s business-related dos and don’ts.
“If we owned the IP, it’s fully in our hands to decide how we create it, how we develop, what are the creative decisions that we take,” Virtala said about the decision to retain the rights to Control. “And then maybe one day in the future, if it proves to be successful, it’s again in our hands to decide what will be done. That was important for us.”
When dealing with a partner like Microsoft, Virtala said that “the biggest lessons were on the business and production side. We can create excellent games, but the type of games we do with an immersive world and characters, memorable stories—those are typically building blocks in any entertainment business for franchises that could live for a long time. And now for the second time being in a position where we had done all that groundwork and then there was not a possibility to continue those stories… we didn’t want to face that again.”
Because of this, Control will be Remedy’s first multiplatform title since Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne when it launches in 2019, a luxury that Alan Wake and Quantum Break didn’t have.