THQ Nordic, the massive publisher behind well known titles such as Saints Row, Darksiders, Homefront and Metro have today announced their acquisition of the Timesplitters and Second Sight IPs, games developed by UK-based Free Radical back in the PlayStation 2 era.
Free Radical was made up of ex-Rare employees who worked on Goldeneye 007 and Perfect Dark for the N64 before releasing the hugely popular Timesplitters back in 2000 for the PlayStation 2. Timesplitters was a fast-paced multiplayer first-person shooter and established itself as a favorite amongst gamers. You still hear chatter concerning the title today, especially the superb Timesplitters 2, despite the last game in the series, Timesplitters : Future Perfect coming out 13 years ago.
While not as popular as Timesplitters, Second Sight earned decent reviews across the board. It was a departure from Free Radical’s FPS heritage and instead was a third person stealth-action adventure which put players in control of John Vattic, who wakes up in a a medical facility with no memory of how he got there, but aware of extraordinary psychic abilities he now possesses.
Unfortunately Free Radical met an early demise with their tragedy Haze on the PS3 and announced bankruptcy before being purchased by Crytek, of Far Cry fame. Crytek went through its own difficulties in 2014, selling off their Homefront IP to Koch Media. Now, they have also sold off the Timesplitters and Second Sight IPs.
Koch Media is owned by THQ Nordic and itself owns Deep Silver. This gives THQ an enormous number of games under its belt, including Dead Island, Red Faction and now Timesplitters and Second Sight.
This allows THQ to not only re-release the past titles, but also possibly develop more, which is a very exciting prospect. Although the FPS market is full of great titles, Timesplitters had an awesome cartoony feel about it which worked especially well with its multiplayer focused gameplay. We also don’t have that many couch multiplayer games and so a possible return to something like it, especially with the Switch afoot, would be awesome.