When THQ bought Relic in 2004, many considered it a shrewd move. For a mere $10 million, the publisher was picking up the developer of the widely acclaimed--if not wildly successful--sci-fi real-time strategy game Homeworld. Over the following two years, the company produced a well-received Homeworld sequel and two similarly lauded PC RTSes--Company of Heroes and Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War. (Two expansions for the latter--Winter Assault and Dark Crusade--have also made it to market.)
During the same period, Relic also cooked up The Outfit, a tepidly received World War II action game for the Xbox 360. However, that experience apparently hasn't stopped the studio from branching out into genres beyond the real-time strategy genre. Today, FiringSquad spotted two Relic job openings in the careers section of THQ's Web site--one for an unnamed role-playing game, the other for an unidentified massively multiplayer online project.
The first position is for "an experienced and motivated Senior Designer to contribute to [Relic's] new RPG project." Candidates should have over four years of design production experience, experience developing RPGs, and a "record of successfully published titles." No details about the game itself were disclosed.
Job listing number two is for "an experienced and motivated Senior Designer to join [Relic's] MMO team." Like with the RPG position, applicants should have four-plus years of game design experience and a record of successfully published titles. They should also have prior experience with an MMOG, though no subgenre was mentioned.
Given the vagueness of both job listings, it is impossible to tell if they are for two separate games--an RPG and MMOG--or for a single MMORPG. Either way, the project--or projects--will be a landmark for Relic, which has never developed a title in any of the three genres.
[UPDATE] While Electronic Arts-owned Mythic Entertainment has the rights to a Warhammer MMOG, they do not have the rights to a Warhammer 40,000 MMOG. That said, it is unclear if THQ does, as reps for the publisher had not responded to a request for comment as of press time.