The visual effects studio, Weta, has plans to work on a new video game based on a “major worldwide IP” amidst the impending Unity buyout.
Weta Digital is one of the leaders in redefining interactive, real-time 3D (RT3D) content with their Academy award-winning visual effects (VFX) technology and tools at their disposal. Their revolutionary work began in the original Lord of the Rings (LOTR) trilogy and have since branched off to work on VFX for shows and movies, most recently: Hawkeye, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, The Suicide Squad and more. Yesterday, Weta put up a job posting for a game producer to help with their “next PC and Console game project with a major worldwide IP (intellectual property) that is very close to our hearts.”
A number of sources speculate that the new video game could potentially be a new LOTR video game since it is a “a major worldwide IP that is very close to [their] hearts” and that is the IP that made the VFX studio as big as it is today. This would not be out of the norm as Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor and the sequel game has had success already, immersing gamers in the J.R.R. Tolkein world.
Earlier this month, the popular Unity game development engine company, announced they were willing to pay $1.6 billion to acquire Weta Digital and its resources and workforce of 275 engineers. The LOTR director and stakeholder in Weta, Peter Jackson, shared their thoughts on the Unity and VFX giant merge, “Together, Unity and Weta Digital can create a pathway for any artist, from any industry, to be able to leverage these incredibly creative and powerful tools. Offering aspiring creatives access to Weta Digital’s technology will be nothing short of game changing and Unity is just the company to bring this vision to life.”
This appears to be a move to challenge Epic Games’ Unreal Engine that Industrial Light & Magic (ILM) used in Disney+’s The Mandalorian and used for the spectacular mixed reality esports graphics for League of Legends tournaments for Riot Games. This will not be the first time the VFX studio has been involved in the gaming atmosphere, as they opened their gaming department in 2021 and have worked on games like the multiplayer VR game, Combonauts.
There is no further information as to which major IP this new video game will be based on, but with Weta and Unity’s teams, it will be a massive one. LOTR fans can definitely hope it is a new game set in the iconic Middle-earth realm, or perhaps it could be a new, groundbreaking Marvel or DC game—not much is certain yet as the two big companies are working on the acquisition deal.