New EA Studio Dedicated to Open World Action-Adventure Will Be Led by Ex-Monolith Productions VP


EA has hired ex-Monolith (Shadow of Mordor) vice president Kevin Stephens to head a new studio focused on an open-world action-adventure game, GamesIndustry.biz reports.

 Stephens worked as head of Monolith Productions for a little over eight years, after a five-year stint as vice president of development at WB Games, and a decade on the engineering team at Monolith before that.

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The Seattle-based studio, currently unnamed, will potentially allow remote workers to supplement in-house employees.

“We’re still figuring out a lot of foundational questions,” says Samantha Ryan, EA senior vice president and group general manager. Ryan was previously president at Monolith Productions, working with Stephens there and at Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment in the late 90’s. “How big? What games? How fast to grow? Kevin and I both know how important it is to get the foundations of any studio ‘right’ and he’ll take his time to figure it all out. When you rush, you don’t give yourself time to be thoughtful. Why rush?”

Stephens’ credits include engineering work on F.E.A.R., Condemned, plus the Middle-Earth: Shadow of Mordor and Shadow of War games.

 Ryan declined to say whether the new studio will work on a previously established IP or a new one, GamesIndustry reports.

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It’s another move in EA’s recent (and growing) list of acquisitions and new partnerships. In the past few months, EA has purchased Super Mega Baseball developer Metalhead Software, DiRT and Project Cars developer Codemasters, and Glu Mobile, the latter of which cost a cool $2.1 billion.

EA reportedly plans to share more details about the new studio this fall, GI.biz says.

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