On Tuesday, publisher 2K Sports and WWE 2K developer Yuke's officially parted ways, after a 20-year partnership. According to PlayStation LifeStyle, Yuke's senior vice president and producer Hiromi Furuta revealed that they have been wanting to go in a new direction for quite some time now. It was also expressed by Furuta that she had concerns with their relationship with 2K Sports, due to the recent decline in sales, which began after the release of WWE 2K18.
Furuta mentioned that her team is planning on creating their own wrestling IP, with the intention of now competing with their once former ally, WWE 2K.
"We are aware that our creators are beginning to lose sight of their passion and confidence and becoming focused only on completing assigned tasks," Furuta stated. "That's not the direction Yuke's wants to go in. Right now, looking at the market demands, players are expecting something new every time we release a game and we feel like we haven't achieved what we've really wanted to do.
"For example, in many cases we're still using old assets and we're not able to do some things in the way that we want to. We are trying to launch a new wrestling game. Of course, we will retain the WWE team, but we are also aware that our creators are beginning to lose sight of their passion and confidence and becoming focused only on completing assigned tasks. That's not the direction Yuke's wants to go in. So, in order to compensate, we're going to start a new wrestling project."
Taking Yuke's place will be Visual Concepts, a studio that has helped co-develop the WWE 2K series since 2013.
The publisher from 2K Sports stated that they're quite happy to work with Visual Concepts, and are looking forward to how the overall game will look once it's fully done.
"As we've continued to invest in the WWE 2K franchise, we've seen the Visual Concepts team display incredible passion, talent and commitment to the future of the series. We thank Yuke's for their years of partnership and are excited to see what the Visual Concepts team brings to the franchise moving forward."
WWE 2K20 will be released and available on October 22 for the PS4 and other game consoles.