With the release of Psychonauts 2 later this year, it appears that the influx of cash that came from Microsoft buying Double Fine and other studios such as Compulsion Games, InXile, Ninja Theory, Obsidian, and others has really paid off.
In fact, one could say that the very integrity of Psychonauts 2 has been saved. This is because money was running out before Double Fine was purchased in 2019, which meant that they were making massive cuts to their title:
"With Psychonauts 2, we could see the end of our budget coming up, and so we had cut a lot of stuff," Schafer explains. "We had cut our boss fights. Now we are able to put those back in, and we're like 'we think people would have noticed if we didn't have those boss fights'. Being able to complete the game in the way that it was meant to be was very important."
"I'm looking forward to doing things for the right reasons. When you only have a certain amount of time and money, you might jump into a part of the game that you're not ready to jump into, or start working on art before you're ready with design. But now I look forward to this era where we are doing everything for what is right for the game."
Game Pass also appears to be offering even more financial security for developers, as developer stated that they could never pitch their ideas to a publisher because it's not economically feasible to be released for the publisher at the possible price point. Few games are these days unless they are a Madden or Call of Duty.
Regardless, Psychonauts 2 will be coming to PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC platforms later this year.
It sucks, but I get it: why would a studio spend tens of millions of dollars on a title that is probably a niche title at best? With Game Pass, developers are seemingly able to develop the games they want, because it grows Game Pass' portfolio and keeps players subscribed, which in turn makes Microsoft happy and keeps them funding developers like Double Fine, who've had a rough run over the years trying to keep the lights on. With Microsoft providing funding and letting Double Fine create games, it seems to be a winning strategy so far. We'll find out later this year if that's actually the case for Psychonauts 2, which has been in development for a half-decade at this point.
What do you think of this news? Are you happy that Psychonauts 2 is finally coming out? Let us know in the comments!