Housemarque has been secretly working on “Stormdivers” for the last two years. It’s the studio’s second game made with the Unreal Engine (the first was last year’s side-scroller “Matterfall”), and the first title it will treat as an ongoing service. “This also means that there are ways to get to play it earlier, and we’d love to develop it further with a feedback loop in mind,” the developer said.
Housemarque was founded in 1995 and it’s the oldest video game company in Finland. It’s known for arcade titles like “Resogun” and “Super Stardust HD,” but low sales of such games led the studio to declare “arcade is dead” in 2017. “While some of them have reached a massive audience due to free game offerings across various digital sales channels, this unfortunately doesn’t help pay for development, which gets costly for high production quality,” it said at the time.
While Housemarque is now focusing on other genres, it said it’s still looking for ways to incorporate arcade-like elements in its new projects. “As a part of our recent transition away from our core genres, we’ve had a hard look at what really makes up an arcade game and how can we bring those elements to whole new heights,” it said. “Fortunately a few greats have been able to show the way and bring gameplay centric experiences to wider audiences. We hope to expand that progress as we bring our explosive effects and second-to-second gameplay to new genres.”