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Founded Year

1998

Stage

Acquired | Acquired

About Pandemic Studios

Pandemic Studios was a video game developer bought by Electronic Arts in 2007. It was closed in November 2009. The studio was known for work on games such as Star Wars: Battlefront, Mercenaries, The Saboteur, and Full Spectrum Warrior.

Pandemic Studios Headquarter Location

1100 Glendon Avenue 19th Floor

Los Angeles, California, 90024,

United States

310 450 5199

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Expert Collections containing Pandemic Studios

Expert Collections are analyst-curated lists that highlight the companies you need to know in the most important technology spaces.

Pandemic Studios is included in 1 Expert Collection, including Gaming.

G

Gaming

4,869 items

Gaming companies are defined as those developing technologies for the PC, console, mobile, and/or AR/VR video gaming market.

Latest Pandemic Studios News

Gaming – The Dark Knight Video Game

May 16, 2021

The Dark Knight Video Game When Rocksteady Games released Batman: Arkham Asylum in 2009, not only did the studio instantly make a name for itself that wouldn’t soon be forgotten, it sent a ripple throughout the video game landscape that would be felt for years to come. For the first time in a long time, there was a video game based on an incredibly popular licensed property that was more than just a tie-in for a new movie. On top of that, Batman: Arkham Asylum, and its three sequels including Batman: Arkham City and Arkham Knight, reinvented the action-adventure genre, with its combat system and stealth mechanics influencing many games to this very day. Continue scrolling to keep reading Click the button below to start this article in quick view. Before Batman: Arkham Asylum, the now-defunct developer Pandemic Studios was working with renowned publisher EA on its own Batman game that would be a tie in for Christopher Nolan’s next film, The Dark Knight. Based on the story of the film, Batman: The Dark Knight would’ve seen the entire cast reprise their roles and shared a number of gameplay similarities with the Arkham series, including an open-world Gotham, vehicular gameplay, and a major focus on stealth mechanics. In the lead up to the highly anticipated Gotham Knights and Rocksteady Games’ Arkham successor Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League, it’s time to take a look back at the Batman game that never was — Pandemic Studios’ Batman: The Dark Knight. RELATED: Fortnite Adds Batman Zero Skin The Story Behind Batman: The Dark Knight In June 2005, EA and developer Eurocom released a Batman Begins video game alongside the release of Christopher Nolan’s film of the same name. The Batman Begins game was developed in conjunction with Warner Bros. and DC Comics for PS2, Xbox, and GameCube as a linear third-person action-adventure stealth game. It just so happened to feature the majority of the film’s cast in its voiceover, including Christian Bale, Michael Caine, and Liam Neeson. Like most licensed games based on films at the time, Batman Begins received mixed reviews from critics and holds a lower Metacritic score than the PlayStation 2 version of Shrek 2. Movie games used to sell well enough regardless, and because of that, there was nothing that could stop the development of a sequel game from going ahead once The Dark Knight film got announced. Due to the poor reception of Batman Begins, a private equity firm Elevation Partners obtained the license for a game based on the upcoming film. The firm outsourced the development of Batman: The Dark Knight to Pandemic Studios, a studio known for games like Star Wars: Battlefront 2 (2005) and Destroy All Humans!. Pandemic Studios Brisbane branch was in charge of the development of Batman: The Dark Knight, while the Los Angeles studio began work on an unreleased racing game. Just like with Batman Begins, Pandemic Studios gained exclusive access to material from the upcoming film, including the script and concepts. The Dark Knight would once again see the film’s cast reprise their roles; including Gary Oldman, who was absent from the first game, and Maggie Gyllenhaal who had replaced Katie Holmes as Bruce Wayne’s love interest, Rachel Dawes. The Cancellation of Batman: The Dark Knight Pandemic began development on the game in September of 2006, six months before principal photography had started on the film, and initially planned to develop a linear stealth action-adventure game similar to Batman Begins. By the end of 2007, the studio had built a whole new engine that specialized in open-world games known as “Odin,” and made the decision to transfer all existing assets and move to an open-world structure that better suited the world Nolan had created with the films. By this point, EA had acquired both Pandemic Studios and BioWare in a joint purchase from VG Holding Corp., and Batman: The Dark Knight was scheduled to release in July 2008 alongside the release of the film. Rocksteady Games’ Batman Arkham Asylum was already far into development at this stage and licensed games were on the way out after years of poor critical reception and a reduction in sales. However, had the transition to Odin engine and Pandemic Studios vision for an open-world Batman video game been a success, the state of EA, Pandemic Studios, and WB Games could’ve looked very different today. The transition to Odin created a number of unforeseen complications for Pandemic Studios, forcing EA to delay the games release from July 2008 to December 2008 alongside the release of the film on DVD and Blu-Ray. The studio came across major problems in Odin: Framerate drops when importing character models, manual reworking of the engines HDR lighting system each time an environmental change was made, a lack of usable level design tools, and severe ongoing issues with bugs in missions. EA expanded the team at Pandemic to over 100 staff in early 2008 to offset the number of staff that resigned due to the troubled transition to Odin, but even that wasn’t enough to save Batman: The Dark Knight. Despite never officially being revealed, EA and Pandemic felt considerable pressure to finish the game once rumors began circling online. It didn’t help that Gary Oldman casually mentioned the game’s existence during an interview with G4, and with the publishing license about to expire, time was up. In October 2008, EA officially (and still secretly) canceled the development of Batman: The Dark Knight, followed by the closure of Pandemic’s Brisbane office in February 2009, and by the end of the year, Pandemic Studios as a whole. RELATED: ‘The Batman’ Can Correct One Misstep From The Nolan Trilogy The Aftermath of Batman: The Dark Knight The Dark Knight was the first theatrical live-action Batman film not to receive a tie-in game after Pandemic’s Batman: The Dark Knight was cancelled, and that trend has continued to this day. EA’s Batman license expired in December 2008 and the publisher chose not to renew it, a decision likely influenced by the failures of Batman Begins and Batman: The Dark Knight. The reveal of Rocksteady’s Batman: Arkham Asylum in August 2008, just four months before the canceled game was scheduled to release, likely influenced the publishing change as well. According to industry analysts, the troubled development of Batman: The Dark Knight which led to the game’s delay from its original launch window alongside film’s release cost the publisher upwards of $100m USD in potential revenue. Batman: The Dark Knight likely wasn’t going to reinvent licensed games and reshape the genre like Batman: Arkham Asylum would go on to do the following year. That being said, it could’ve been a great adaptation of one of the greatest comic-book movies, and movies in general, ever made. For Batman fans, the reality that eventually came to be has turned out pretty good, and there’s still a lot to look forward to with Gotham Knights and Suicide Squad: Kill the Justice League on the horizon. Even Marvel’s Spider-Man has a list of troubled movie tie-in relatives, so it’s probably for the best that Batman: The Dark Knight never saw the light of day. MORE: Marvel’s Avengers Leaks Don’t Mention Guardians of the Galaxy Mass Effect Legendary Edition Complete Guide – Tips, Tricks, Discussions, & News About The Author

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