×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

‘Half-Life,’ ‘Portal’ Writer and Riot Dev Form Seattle Game Studio

Game developers Chet Faliszek and Kimberly Voll formed a co-operative games studio called Stray Bombay, they revealed to Variety.

The new studio, which is based in Seattle, was formed to create games to better reflect players’ desires for social experiences.

“Players are smart, they are social,” Faliszek wrote in a blog post revealing the new studio. “But games often don’t reflect that and we think that can change.”

Faliszek is coming to this new venture after 12 years at Valve, where he worked on various franchises, including “Left 4 Dead,” “Half-Life,” and “Portal.”

Voll is leaving her position as principal technical game designer at Riot Games to start Stray Bombay. Faliszek wrote that Voll was an easy choice for co-founder, as she is an expert in AI and in human-centric design.

Faliszek, who was the co-project lead for the “Left 4 Dead” series, shared an anecdote of a married couple using the survival horror game to stay connected while the husband was stationed in Iraq, which the husband then shared in an email to Faliszek.

“The [couple] could spend time in each other’s company as if they were sitting next to each other on the couch at home,” Falizzek explained. “That is powerful and something only the shared experience of games can bring.”
With this in mind, Faliszek and Voll want to make games that reflect that co-operative experience that help players feel that they are working as a real team.
“As Kim and I talked over the years about the kind of games we want to make, we realized we want to create games that give players a place to breathe and live in the moment,” Faliszek wrote. “Games that tell stories knowing you are going to come back again and again, that change each time you play them without feeling completely random, and that help you feel like a real team that supports each other…not a bunch of folks in each other’s way. And where AI drives not just the enemies but helps drive the entire experience.”
While the two aren’t quite ready to announce any games in development, they are interested in meeting potential candidates who’d like to join Stray Bombay, which is why they chose to announce the week of the Game Developer Conference.
“If you are in town, drop us an email at chet@straybombay.com or kim@straybombay.com to set up a meeting,” Voll wrote. “If not, don’t worry, just send an email to careers@straybombay.com with your resume and we will get back to you.”
As for players, Voll asked them to stay tuned.
“And if you are a player, we aren’t ready for you yet,” Voll wrote. “You can join our newsletter to keep up to date, but we are going to go dark for a little bit as we start laying the foundation of our new world. Then we will share it with you, get your feedback and grow and create that experience with you.”

More Gaming

  • harry potter wizards unite

    'Harry Potter: Wizards Unite' Off to Slower Start Than 'Pokemon Go'

    Niantic’s new location-based augmented reality game “Harry Potter: Wizards Unite” is off to a solid start — but it doesn’t seem to have quite the same momentum as “Pokemon Go” did when it launched 3 years ago. That’s according to initial estimates from app analytics specialist Sensor Tower. “Harry Potter: Wizards Unite” first became available [...]

  • survios at the linq

    Not Just Gambling: Las Vegas Is Becoming a Virtual Reality Hub

    Walk into the Linq on the Las Vegas strip these days, and you might not immediately realize you just stepped into a casino. Instead, you’ll stumble across a series of living-room-like lounge setups, complete with leather couches, big-screen TVs, Xbox Ones and Oculus Go VR headsets. There’s also a bar with a massive wrap-around touch [...]

  • Netflix HQ LA

    Netflix Engineers Developed a Rumble Pack Feature During Latest Hack Day

    A duo of Netflix employees had a unique idea for making the service’s shows even more stirring: They added a rumble pack option to the Netflix app as part of the company’s latest hack day. When watching shows like “Voltron,” the feature makes phones vibrate in sync with the action on the screen, similar to [...]

  • Niantic's Harry Potter: Wizards Unite Game

    ‘Harry Potter: Wizards Unite’ to Launch This Week

    “Pokemon Go” maker Niantic is getting ready to launch its next big game: “Harry Potter: Wizards Unite” is set to launch in June 21, the company revealed in a tweet this week. The worldwide launch of Harry Potter: Wizards Unite begins this Friday, June 21! Keep your eyes peeled and wand ready for more information [...]

  • Sarah Iooss - Twitch

    Twitch Hires Sarah Iooss, Former Mic and Viacom Exec, as Head of North America Sales

    Twitch has tapped Sarah Iooss, most recently EVP of revenue at millennial-news startup Mic, to lead the advertising sales team in North America for the Amazon-owned live-streaming video platform focused on video gaming. Iooss will be based in New York, reporting to chief revenue officer Walker Jacobs, who joined Twitch last fall after serving as [...]

  • littlstar ps4 app

    Littlstar Expands Beyond VR With New PS4 App, Signs Up 30,000 Paying Subscribers (EXCLUSIVE)

    A&E-backed immersive content aggregator Littlstar is expanding beyond virtual reality (VR): The New York-based startup launched a dedicated PlayStation4 app this week, giving users of Sony’s game console access to their personal media libraries, as well as both traditional and 360-degree video content from a variety of publishers. Littlstar also announced that it signed up [...]

  • Game of Thrones Season 8 Production

    'Game of Thrones,' Netflix VFX Among Those to Be Featured in SIGGRAPH Production Talks

    VFX pros behind the final season of “Game of Thrones,” the blockbuster film “Avengers: Endgame,” Pixar’s upcoming “Toy Story 4,” last year’s Oscar-winning “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse,” Netflix series, including “Stranger Things,” and more will give SIGGRAPH 2019 attendees a behind-the-scenes look at their work during the conference’s Production Sessions. There will even be a [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content