Arkane Studios is currently taking a break from development of their popular Dishonored series as no additional installments are planned at the moment.
Dishonored: Death of the Outsider released to favorable reviews last year, like Dishonored 2 in 2016, earning spots on numerous end of the year lists, including ScreenRant's own. It was the third entry in the series following Dishonored and Dishonored 2.
Speaking with VG247, lead designer Ricardo Bare left opportunities open this week at QuakeCon, saying "anything could happen," but clarified that future projects are "resting for now."
While the first two games followed the characters of Cordo and Emily, the third game took a departure from the familiar father and daughter pair. It focused on Billie Lurk, a supporting character from the second game. Clearly a fan favorite, Billie's game also featured brand new game-play mechanics and traded the typical progression system in favor of an immediate focus on experimentation in the game's system.
In his interview with VG247, Bare continued that Arkane "[will] always craft spaces that you feel like you’re visiting, whether it’s Dunwall or Talos 1." Talos 1, of course, refers to last year's Prey, another Arkane release that saw players enter a space station invested with shape shifting creatures. The game retained Dishonored's first-person perspective and physics-based interaction, but diverged from the role-playing elements entirely, focusing on crafting and resource management.
Bare detailed Arkane's "game plan," if you will, saying they will always focus on "improvisational gameplay – giving players a bunch of cool abilities and tools." He wants players to "figure it out, be creative, [and] own the experience." Arkane's desire to bend the limits of the 'stealth RPG' genre is evident in the changes of pace and game-play in their 2017 releases. In fact, each of their subsequent releases after the original Dishonored improves upon and adds to the formula; these aren't your "carbon copy" sequels.
Luckily for fans of the series, the trilogy came to a natural conclusion with Billie Lurk's story in Death of the Outsider. If Arkane does decide to take a permanent break from development of Dishonored titles, there would be few loose ends to tie up. Alternatively, if they do continue to work in the world of Dunwall, there are plenty of side characters with stories to tell. That's one advantage of creating a rich, unique world full of whale oil and rat plagues.
So what's next for Arkane then? According to Bare, Arkane is looking into "incoporat[ing] more online sharing or multiplayer type stuff" that's centered around community. Given the huge popularity of games like Minecraft that encourage creativity with an emphasis on sharing, this seems like a natural step forward for Arkane. They previously developed an unfinished title known as The Crossing (2007) that would have seen players face their friends in a single-player mode, functioning as obstacles in their story.
While for now Arkane is stepping away from the series that brought them so much success, it's exciting to know that they are exploring every story opportunity in an effort to bring players games with just as memorable moments as that first time you put on Corvo's mask.