In February former publisher Starbreeze – which is currently experiencing financial troubles – sold the publishing rights for System Shock 3 back to developer OtherSide, in a deal which saw it recoup the finances it had invested in its development.
The game’s creative director, Warren Spector, told VGC that talks are currently progressing with several interested publishers and that OtherSide has enough capital to continue while prospective deals are discussed.
“It’s going great,” he said. “We’re talking to a lot of partners and we have a lot of interest. We don’t have a deal right now, but luckily OtherSide is flush enough that we’re funding ourselves and can continue to do that for quite a while. Let’s see what happens.
“We need somebody to say, ‘yeah, let’s talk deal terms’ and we’re in that kind of discussion with some folks. But we’re not quite finished yet.”
Spector added that he can’t rule out the possibility of OtherSide self-publishing the immersive sim, however that’s a scenario he’d like to avoid.
“The reality is, OtherSide is a company of developers who want to develop games,” he explained. “We don’t particularly want to be a publisher. [Founder] Paul Neurath and I have worked with publishers before, Origin self-published when I was there, and we don’t want to get into the market of distributing stuff.
“I think it would be a huge distraction. We would have to hire staff to do that because we don’t currently have the expertise. I hope we don’t go that way. I’ll probably get in trouble for saying that if we do.
“We’re not ruling anything out, but at this point we’re looking for a publishing and funding partner.”
System Shock 3 was most recently shown at GDC in March, when Spector confirmed it’s being made with the Unity engine.
The first series entry in more than a decade will sport the genre-blending gameplay typical of Spector’s previous games (Thief, Deus Ex), with art by former Irrational artists Robb Waters and Nate Wells.