Jools Watsham and Gregg Hargrove of the development studio Renegade Kid announced today that after a decade long partnership, the two will be going their seperate ways. Renegade Kid built itself a reputation by producing games mostly for Nintendo’s DS and 3DS handheld systems, will be splitting into two new development houses and divvying up their properties.
Atooi, under the direction of Watsham, will be making future installments of the former studio’s 2D retro styled games, such as the highly regarded Mutant Mudds, Xeodrifter, and the mobile title Totes the Goats. Watsham has been public about disagreements with journalists, notably Jim Sterling and Jed Whitaker, for what he viewed as unfair and biased reviews of Renegade Kid’s Dementium Remastered in late 2015. The disagreement bubbled out over Twitter and resulted in a lengthy blog post from the offended developer, which he later apologized for.
Hargrove, the more less vocal of the pair, will be taking on their 3D endevours, such as the aforementioned Dementium series as well as Moon Chronicles over at his studio Infitizmo. The split seems to be amicable, and the announcement notes that they will be parting as friends with respect for each other.
Despite their shared roots, these two companies seems to be operating under some pretty different ideologies, which seems to suggest that this has been in the works for quite a while now. Atooi promises “the development of retro inspired games that capture the essence of the past and unite it with the magic of tomorrow,” juxtaposing Infitizmo’s more multimedia focused goal of “(blending) interactive gaming, music, and web-based storytelling to create a fun and multifaceted entertainment experience.” More telling, however, is the note stating that Atooi was founded in 2015.
Whatever the case, and whatever these two developer’s past, it looks like they have a world of opportunity before them and enough talent to capitalize on it.