Way back at The Game Awards in 2015, creator Tim Schafer and Double Fine Studios announced that we would finally get a follow up to the beloved cult classic Psychonauts. Of course, it would be aptly named Psychonauts 2. That was a long time ago, and during that time, Double Fine has seen a lot of ups and downs. Not the least of which was the company being bought out by Xbox Games Studios.
That happened last year. Double Fine became one of the many studios that Microsoft picked up to increase its stable of first-party titles. This was a very smart move on Microsoft’s part, and Double Fine was a huge get for the company. Now it seems that this acquisition was equally beneficial to both parties, and more than just financially.
Double Fine’s new freedom
Tim Schafer commented on this in a recent interview with Games Industry. “With Psychonauts 2, we could see the end of our budget coming up, and so we had cut a lot of stuff. 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.”
Schafer also spoke on the benefits of Double Fine being freed from the burdens of financial pressure since Microsoft acquired the studio. “…you do think about where we’re going to get the next six months of salaries from. That fills your mind a lot, and I am just getting used to my mind being free of that. Being able to apply it to games and creativity has been an adjustment, but a really great adjustment.”
Psychonauts 2 is, as of now anyway, still scheduled for a release sometime this year.