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GTA Maverick Developing Vast New Open World Game

Mere days after setting up a number of new game companies, the man responsible for turning the Grand Theft Auto games into a global powerhouse has announced that he is working on a new open-world game in which the player can do… well, pretty much anything. Leslie Benzies, the former head of Rockstar North and lead developer of the GTA games – from III to V, and every related title in-between – has unveiled Everywhere, which he is making in partnership with former Rockstar devs Colin Entwhistle and Matthew Smith.

Everywhere has a lot of traditional game mechanics but we’re going for something more that draws inspiration from, well, everywhere,” Benzies told VentureBeat. “Players are getting smarter and require more from their games, and we want players to have the real freedom to live in our worlds in the ways they want to. We’re aiming to offer a huge variety of game modes and styles that not only tell our stories but also enable players to live in the identities and adventures they most want to explore.”

Everywhere is being built in Amazon’s Lumberyard game engine, which seems to be gaining traction recently: late last year, lead developer Chris Roberts announced that Star Citizen was migrating to Lumberyard, eschewing the similar CryEngine the game was formerly built in.

Benzie left Rockstar in acrimonious circumstances in 2013 – he is suing the company for unpaid royalties from the GTA games, while Rockstar is counter-suing him for breach of contract – but that does not seem to have soured the work he did while at the company.

“I am proud to have been part of past advancements in gaming,” he said, “but I am even more excited about what we have in store for the future. The working title of this new game is Everywhere and the vision is long term, with the capacity to develop and grow forever. Our goal is to create a platform where players can be entertained, and also entertain others while blurring the lines between reality, and a simulated world.”

The development team for Everywhere currently numbers 30 people and is still looking for more staff.

Ashley Allen

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