Dark Horse Comics, the imprint behind the likes of Hellboy and Umbrella Academy, has opened a new division, Dark Horse Games, to develop and license video games.
The new initiative seems to have been some time in the making, with General Manager Johnny Lee telling GamesBeat that the company is already in “late-stage discussions with several” AAA development teams, with a likelihood of releasing its first game early next year. By the sounds of things, Dark Horse Games will effectively have two separate operational imperatives.
The company plans to partner with experienced, established teams to bring its biggest IPs to video games. “We and our partners can really evaluate if a story IP and character universe would be a good fit for games that they’re internally designing and developing,” Lee said. “I think most AAA devs that I’ve talked to prefer their game dev team to build core gameplay and then fit an IP to it, versus shoving an IP down their throats.”
Meanwhile, Dark Horse Games’ nascent development team will focus on lesser-known franchises, both old and new. Lee said the internal team will remain small for the time being, expecting to grow no larger than 10 people within the first year of operations. Though no games have been announced at this early stage, the division’s website lists Hellboy, Sin City, 300, Umbrella Academy, and Resident Alien among its “evergreen” franchises — all of which have previously been successfully translated to film / TV.