Google acquires Montreal-based Typhoon Studios

Google has acquired Typhoon Studios, the Montreal studio behind Journey to the Savage Planet for an undisclosed sum.

In an interview with VentureBeat, Google Stadia’s first-party boss, Jade Raymond, said the megacorp had snapped up the Montreal studio to be its “very first first-party studio” because “they’re a team that has done amazing work on amazing games”.

The studio – which was formed by former Ubisoft devs Reid Schneider and Alex Hutchinson, – will now join Stadia’s own Games and Entertainment studio, also in Montreal.

“We’re super-excited to be able to be working with this crew,” Raymond said. “They worked on everything from Batman to Assassin’s Creed. And the original Splinter Cell, which Reid led as executive producer.

“It’s a small indie studio but built by industry veterans who shipped a lot of your favourite triple-A [games]. They’re about to ship Journey to the Savage Planet, which is coming on January 28th. It’s a game that they made with a team of 25 and under two years. They built up a studio and shipped something pretty amazing.

“They have a very tight-knit team that managed to ship what looks like a pretty awesome game in a very impressive amount of time,” Raymond added. “And this will give us a big head start in our Montreal studio in terms of having a team that’s ready to really push innovation. It’s our very first first-party studio that will help drive exclusive games for Stadia.”

Raymond wouldn’t be drawn on what, precisely, the studio’s first Stadia project will be – “we’re not ready to talk about the specific people or what it is we’re working on” – but says Stadia has “already recruited a core team here that’s on-site”, adding that Schneider and Hutchinson have “done an amazing job of really recruiting not only the best people, but creating a great culture where all those people are part of the team and working really well together”. 

“One thing that’s really exciting to the team is the opportunities to build something really innovative and really new and focused on one awesome platform,” Schneider commented. “The most exciting thing from my point of view is that, with the cloud, the new technology allows us to think at a bigger scale than we had before. The opportunity space is so much bigger.”

Google recently recruited a number of former senior Assassin’s Creed developers to join its new first-party games studio in Montreal, Canada, including former Assassin’s Creed executive producer Sébastien Puel, who’s joined Google as director-general of the new outfit, and Francois Pelland, who’s been appointed head of production for Google’s first-party game strategy. Watch Dogs’ art director, Mathieu Leduc, has also joined Google Stadia as an art director.

About Vikki Blake

It took 15 years of civil service monotony for Vikki to crack and switch to writing about games. She has since become an experienced reporter and critic working with a number of specialist and mainstream outlets in both the UK and beyond, including Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, IGN, MTV, and Variety.

Check Also

Critical Path: September and October 2023 – Highlights coming up!

Here are the key upcoming events and releases to mark in your calendar for September and October 2023