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Star Trek games haven’t sold as well as they should, given the huge number of Trekkies out there. But that doesn’t mean video game publishers should give up on that valuable franchise.
Paramount Digital Entertainment is charging once more into the breach, commissioning a new Star Trek game to debut on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC in the summer of 2012. Digital Extremes, a seasoned developer that has made games such as BioShock 2 and Dark Sector, is developing the game for publication in 2012. If it succeeds, the movie company will breathe new life into a franchise that has fallen on hard times, at least in terms of game revenues.
Paramount is giving it another try because of the successful Star Trek film of 2009. That movie, which featured a young Captain Kirk and Spock, was a big box office success. The new game will be set in that same universe, with an original story. Players can assume the roles of Kirk and Spock in the game. And they can play cooperatively as well as in multiplayer mode.
“Star Trek challenges the boundaries of co-op gameplay with a galactic adventure that gamers and fans have never experienced,” said Tom Lesinski, president of Paramount Digital Entertainment.
He said the goal is to create a definitive Star Trek gaming experience. The game will feature an original story by God of War writer Marianne Krawczyk, in collaboration with the writer/producers of the new Star Trek films, Bob Orci and Alex Kurtzman. Digital Extremes is working with Bad Robot, K/O Paper Products and Damon Lindelof. Paramount will publish the game under a license with CBS Consumer Products. That’s a lot of negotiations that happened here, all so that Trekkies could rejoice.
The challenge is a big one. Activision used to make Star Trek games by the handful, but it stopped because the games didn’t resonate with gamers. Recently, Cryptic Studios published Star Trek Online. The game garnered a small audience and was profitable, but it didn’t come anywhere near the audience that the company hoped for.