A ronin warrior in the first game by Dark Passenger, a studio founded by former CD Projekt Red veterans

Dark Passenger Is A New Indie Studio From Former CDPR Veterans

July 28, 2022

By: Joseph Allen

 
 

A group of former CD Projekt Red developers have teamed up to form Dark Passenger, a brand new indie studio currently working on its first major project. The studio is headed by former CDPR cinematic artist Jakub Ben and will focus on creating "engaging experiences and stories".

What do we know about Dark Passenger?

According to Dark Passenger's new official website, the studio is made up of "game dev veterans and fresh blood specialists". Several of Dark Passenger's staffers also worked for RealTime Warriors, a cinematics studio whose work you might recognize on projects like ChernobyliteCyberpunk 2077, and The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. Dark Passenger says this work, and its staffers' work on CD Projekt Red titles, led it to "production of [its] own, original project", which is currently early in development.

 

The studio is one of several formed by ex-CDPR staffers recently; in February this year, Witcher 3 game director Konrad Tomaszkiewicz announced the formation of new studio Rebel Wolves, and former CDPR producer Stan Just also struck out on his own with the formation of Covenant back in 2021. In the past, former CD Projekt or CD Projekt Red staffers have also been involved in the foundation of studios like Starward Industries, which was founded as a joint venture between ex-CD Projekt and Techland devs, and Fool's Theory, which is currently working on 11 bit studios' "biggest game yet", Project Vitriol.

What will Dark Passenger's first game be like?

According to Dark Passenger, its first project will be an online PvPvE multiplayer game built in Unreal Engine 5. It'll be set in feudal Japan and will feature a locomotion system that will allow players to perform incredible feats like running on arrows fired by other players, climbing across vertical surfaces using claws, and using a spear as a pole to leap over obstacles. You'll be able to battle enemies with weapons like tanto, katanas, and wakizashi, as well as thrown weapons like kunai and shuriken. There will also be a customization system that will let you modify your character with new weapons and equipment, although we don't know if these alterations will be purely cosmetic yet.

 
 
A ninja in the new Dark Passenger project
We don't have too much to go on when it comes to Dark Passenger's inaugural project, just some cool concept shots like this one.

Setting-wise, the game will take place in the wake of an uprising against an unnamed Japanese shogun. You will play as the agent of one of a number of houses who are sending assassins against one another in games of intrigue and cunning. You'll need to keep to the shadows as you run across city rooftops, climb over pagodas, and hide beneath wooden floorboards. It sounds like the as-yet unnamed game will focus heavily on traversal and stealth, so it'll be interesting to see if Dark Passenger can pull off what sounds like a pretty ambitious project. The game is set to hit PC, Xbox Series X|S, and PS5, although we don't have a release window for it as yet.