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Former Star Wars MMO devs set up new studio, working on an original sci-fi title

T-Minus Zero Entertainment joins NetEase Games’ portfolio of game studios

Screenshot of multiple players in Jedi and Imperial Trooper armor wielding red lightsabers in Star Wars: The Old Republic Image: BioWare/Electronic Arts
Toussaint Egan is an associate curation editor, out to highlight the best movies, TV, anime, comics, and games. He has been writing professionally for over 8 years.

NetEase Games announced on Thursday that the company is establishing T-Minus Zero Entertainment, a new game development studio based in Austin, Texas. The studio will emphasize a remote-first approach and will be headed by Rich Vogel, an industry veteran known for his previous work on such games as Ultima Online, Star Wars: Galaxies, and Star Wars: The Old Republic.

“Our studio’s mission is to create epic, immersive worlds where players from around the globe can play together, forming vibrant and passionate communities,” Vogel said in a press release statement. “The team at NetEase Games shares our vision to create memorable and meaningful experiences, and they have made it a priority to provide the support and creative freedom to allow us to make our dream a reality.”

Headshot of Rich Vogel, Studio head of T-Minus Zero Entertainment
Rich Vogel, Studio head of T-Minus Zero Entertainment
Image: T-Minus Zero Entertainment
T-Minus Zero Entertainment Logo Image: T-Minus Zero Entertainment

Vogel will be joined by a team of seasoned game creators as the studio moves forward to work on a third-person online multiplayer action game set in a sci-fi universe. This team includes game director Mark Tucker (Fallout 76, Doom, Crimson Alliance), art director Jeff Dobson (Star Wars: The Old Republic, Dragon Age Inquisition), and producer Scott Malone (Fallout 76, Doom, The Elder Scrolls Online), with an average of over 20 years each in the games industry.

T-Minus Zero Entertainment is the latest move in NetEase Games’ push to expand its portfolio of in-house development studios. Last year, the company acquired Quantic Dream, the French game developer and publisher known for such games as Heavy Rain, Beyond: Two Souls, and Detroit: Become Human, and established Nagoshi Studio, a new studio led by ex-Sega developer Toshihiro Nagoshi, of Yakuza fame. NetEase has also invested in Something Wicked Games, an independent studio founded by former Bethesda Game Studios designer Jeff Gardiner and Obsidian Entertainment developer Charlie Staples.

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