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News video games 22 March 2023, 12:48

XCOM Creator Abandons Turn-based Strategy Games

Jake Solomon, director of the latest installments of the XCOM series and Marvel's Midnight Suns, has left Firaxis Games, but is not saying goodbye to the industry. The developer plans to set up his own studio. We know what kind of games he wants to make.

A month ago we informed that Firaxis Games had lost two veterans - longtime studio head Steve Martin, as well as Jake Solomon, director of XCOM: Enemy Unknown, XCOM 2 and Marvel's Midnight Suns. Now we have learned what the latter developer will do.

Solomon intends to open his own studio in Baltimore (Maryland, United States). According to his conversation with Simon Parkin - host of the My Perfect Console podcast - the team will not be making turn-based strategies for which that developer became famous.

"After creating Marvel's Midnight Suns, I thought: 'Ok, so now it's time for another turn-based strategy; am I excited about it?'. And I discovered that I wasn't, though not because the genre isn't amazing - after all, I've devoted my whole life to it - but because of the feeling that I have nothing more to add."

Solomon began to wonder what would make him happy. He got excited at the thought of creating his own studio, where he could do new things. What kind of things specifically?

"I can't depart too far away from what I have experience in. Although I am a creative director, I am actually also a very meticulous systems designer. (...) Even with Marvel's Midnight Suns, even though I had great designers, I created some of the characters, the enemies, their abilities myself....

System design is important to me, so I want to produce a game based on it. I think it will not be a turn-based strategy.... I want to create something like a life simulator or just a simulation. That is the plan."

It remains for us to wish Jake Solomon that this plan will "work out" better than Marvel's Midnight Suns, which, despite high ratings from critics, turned out to be a considerable financial disappointment for the publisher 2K Games. Shortly after the release of that game, three veterans - the aforementioned Steve Martin and Jake Solomon, as well as Garth DeAngelis, have left the team. However, we do not know whether this information is related.

As evidence of the poor sales of Marvel's Midnight Suns let's use the fact that just over a quarter after its release the game is being sold on Steam 50% off. 2K Games hopes that the title - like Firaxis Games' previous works - will sell well in the long run.

Hubert Sledziewski

Hubert Sledziewski

Has been writing professionally since 2016. He joined Gamepressure.com five years later - although he has known the service since he had access to the internet - to combine his love for words and games. Deals mainly with news and journalism. A sociologist by education, a gamer by passion. He started his gaming adventure at the age of four - with a Pegasus. Currently, prefers PC and demanding RPGs, but does not shy away from consoles or other genres. When he's not playing or writing, he enjoys reading, watching series (less often movies) and Premier League matches, listening to heavy music, and also walking the dog. Almost uncritically loves the work of Stephen King. Does not abandon plans to follow in his footsteps. However, he keeps his first "literary achievements" locked away deep in a drawer.

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