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11 February, 2014

Poaching The Witcher - 11 Bit Studios Comments on Signing CD Projekt RED Staff

The growing trend of big name talented developers departing their triple-A console game lives to take a stab at the indie scene is rapidly becoming a whole scale migration. In this case, however, it appears the trend has come full circle. The fantastic developer CD Projekt RED is an indie in its own right, albeit one who has grown to make some of the biggest console games in history with its The Witcher games. The upcoming The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt could very well be the console game of 2014 – and that’s no exaggeration. 

What a boon then for indie developer 11 Bit Studios, best known for the Anomaly series and a star in Issue 1 of Grab It, that two of the lead designers from The Witcher series have left CD Projekt RED to join up with the company. Lead gameplay designer, Maciej Szcześnik, and series producer, Marek Ziemak are now working with 11 Bit Studios. We reached out to the developer for comment and heard back from senior writer Pawel Miechowski:



What do you think securing such notable talent says about 11 Bit Studios and its future projects?
I believe the games we make are really well polished and original enough to prove 11 bit studios is a decent developer. Now, we want to go to another level and expand, which is possible - among other thing - thanks to these two guys. I'm sure they will have an impact on what we are currently working on, but what's most important here is that we need creative people and they needed space to free their creativity. This is where we meet perfectly. But I wouldn't say now we're going to develop MMORPG.

These developers bring experience from epic choice-driven third-person RPGs to the studio; were they brought on specifically to work on a new IP or will they be driving the Anomaly brand further?
Maciej and Marek have over 15 years of experience working for CD Projekt combined. However, what people don't know is that they worked on some indie games too and their experience is based not only on AAA RPGs. We gave them creative freedom and a chance to work on different games, which is what they were looking for. Maciej is already working on a new IP. Marek is doing something a little bit different, but we have to keep it a secret for now. 

11 Bit Studios Anomaly 2 made our Best 50 iPad Indie Games of 2013 awards, and you can grab it here

Also be sure to check out Issue 1 of Grab It Magazine, which includes Anomaly 2 amongst its 40+ showcased indie games.

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