Silicon Knights picks up Canadian gov't funding

Too Human studio receives grant to nearly double studio size with the addition of 80 new jobs.

by

The Canadian government is generous with its tax subsidies and grants for the game industry, and a welcome recipient has been St. Catherine's, Ontario-based Silicon Knights. This week, Ontario's Ministry of Economic Development and Trade announced that the Too Human developer has been granted funds to dramatically expand its operations with the creation of 80 new jobs.

X-Men Destiny is the next big thing from Silicon Knights.

The Ontario ministry did not expound on the particulars of its grant to Silicon Knights. However, it did note that in addition to creating the new jobs, the money would help "protect 97 existing positions" at the studio.

Led by polemic game creator Dennis Dyack, Silicon Knights is known for its work on Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain, Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem, and Metal Gear Solid: The Twin Snakes. After working exclusively with Nintendo during the late '90s and early 2000s, Silicon Knights signed on with Microsoft Studios to create the Too Human trilogy for the Xbox 360.

Silicon Knights is currently working with Activision to release X-Men: Destiny for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, Wii, and DS this fall. The studio has also expressed interest in returning to the Too Human trilogy, despite the first game's lackluster critical and commercial reception. Additionally, as part of a separate Canadian grant from 2009, the studio said that it was at work on a project titled "Siren in the Maelstrom."

Discussion

60 comments
D_K
D_K

@Ziproy: Grants are basically loans. If the studio does well and makes back the money plus profit that's the same as the grant, it will need to be paid back to the government. Thats how grants work.. Not exactly a bail out.. in fact, its the exact opposite. The canadian government supports the arts.

ziproy
ziproy

So in Canada video game developers get bail-outs??

g1rldraco7
g1rldraco7

I hope this helps their production.

rasterror
rasterror

I'm hoping for a new Too Human game. I've been playing this game like crazy lately trying to get all the epic armor pieces. Also looking forward to the new X-Men game.

xcollector
xcollector

I wonder how much Ontario coughed up for a mere 80 new temporary jobs. This is a studio that is likely to go under. Canada has been too generous with tax breaks for companies that don't pass on the savings.

terry_tate
terry_tate

@maxwell97 thats a pretty stupid statement, do you know how many movies are shot in vancouver?

Khatjal
Khatjal

WHY? Why not give that money to Bioware or something. Yeah they've flubbed Dragon Age, but to give that money to the makers of the biggest travesty in gaming... 'Too Human'... that's a waste of money.

vallan2
vallan2

The game looks like it could be for ps2...:/

KaizerJinn
KaizerJinn

hope this game turns out good because i like the idea of making my own mutant. xD

plaintomato
plaintomato

I'm not sure I support tax subsidies to businesses, there are a lot of pros and even more cons. But one thing is for sure, in the USA we like to ignore the small companies and pump untold amounts of cash into too-big-to-fail-but-constantly-failing companies. At least this isn't that.

TheCyborgNinja
TheCyborgNinja

Awesome, let's enable a developer to remain open when the only game they release is a dud once every 9 years. Their new X-Men game will redeem them for me if it's good, if not, I continue to dislike them.

holtrocks
holtrocks

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

Tarfang2
Tarfang2

this would never happen in britain as our indebt gov't dont seem to see the benifits of cashing in on this lucrative industry

Velos-Seric
Velos-Seric

Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem first game was fantastic the best they ever done.

RE2LeonS
RE2LeonS

oh I didn't know Silicon Knights was based in St Cathrines! I live in Buffalo, NY so they're not too far. Maybe I can picket outside and demand another Eternal Darkness...or at least beg for a job to make another one

mrzeph
mrzeph

Cool, maybe they will have time to work on something good like Eternal Darkness 2.

chessmen1941
chessmen1941

So Canadians are spending their money on a developer that will ultimately sell many more copies of their games here in the US than in Canada? Thanks for spending your money to make better games for us down here! We appreciate it!

archlvt
archlvt

It's not THAT big of a deal that they didn't spell St Catharines right, even people from St Catharines spell it wrong most of the time.

justicxprime
justicxprime

hmmmm, why!? as far as I am concerned, silicon knights failed hard with too human and this x-men game doesn't look any better.

FLOWZMENTAL
FLOWZMENTAL

@_Silent_Jay_ No Canadian Government has given them money. They've done it before they were given a funding grant to start work on Too Human 2/To/Too. So I believe they would do it again. My only thing is the company has problems making one game. Why try to take on two projects at the same time?

_Silent_Jay_
_Silent_Jay_

@Valen_ca The Feds aren't actively claiming anything, it's Gamespot getting the facts mixed up.

CEMETARY_GATESx
CEMETARY_GATESx

This is why socialism fails. No accountability. Too Human was garbage and Silicon Knights should no longer exist as a development studio. The Canadian government is rewarding mediocrity.

shadow-crow
shadow-crow

look too human was unarguably horrible i would like to see too human 2 but only if they fix the first's problems i would prefer to see some thing new/fresh from these guys but before i ask for something i want to find out if the new game they ar making will fail... if X-men destiny is a bad game i hope i never hear about these guys again but if it is a good on get some 2human2 going on

X-RS
X-RS

Aren't more devs in Canada taking advantage of this? Not much of a patriot, but I'm glad someone our government can see video games as the future (and well, present) of entertainment.

NoDzombie
NoDzombie

i loved Too Human, but it did have a whole lot of faults, i would love this money to go towards a sequel that fixed the problems and resulted in a more polished game because the background and ideas from the world they created were amazing

buft
buft

too human 2 and make the valkyrie animation twice as long as before in celebration!

Valen_Ca
Valen_Ca

Sooo the Ontario government gives a grant to Silicon Knights and the Canadian government gets credit for it? Now I know stereotypically a lot of Ontarians think that they are Canada but that really isn't the case. I mean this would be like California giving tax money to *Insert California based company here* and then the press saying that it was handed out by Obama.

DilPower
DilPower

@DarknessMageX There might not be a lot of big companies that are originating from Canada indeed but the number of studios situated here puts Canada 3rd in worldwide rank just behind the US and Japan... Loans and tax breaks are probably a good part of the reason why Canada is producing more and more quality games (which most of the players don't even know they were made there). All in all, I hope the Canadian government isn't wasting my tax money but it definitely is great for the gaming industry.

maxwell97
maxwell97

@DarknessMageX: Nothing to be glad about, though. Canada can make its own mistakes, but if this becomes common, the gaming industry will become just another subsidy-wh*re industry. It will join energy, pharma, agriculture, defense, education etc, fighting over a place at the government's teat, doing what politicians want instead of catering to their customers. There's a middle ground between government passing laws that restrict you, and government taking someone's money to give to you. It would be when they leave the people alone.

Crash_WL
Crash_WL

Hope this money goes towards a better sequel to Too Human. I enjoyed the first, but let's be honest, it could do with a lot of tweaks, but at least the core idea is fantastic but just got a rather mediocre execution.

DarknessMageX
DarknessMageX

lol. Government imposes laws to hamper gaming, gamers aren't happen. Government gives money to companies that make games, gamers aren't happy. We truly are a sorry bunch. It's not like this is the only company the Canadian government has ever given grants to, people. But there aren't a *whole* lot of big game companies here, either. I'm sure BioWare has gotten more than its fair share over the years (yes, they're Canadian, if you didn't know). Just be happy that a federal government recognizes and supports the gaming industry rather than viewing it as a mortal enemy and be *glad* about something for once, will you?

metalkid9
metalkid9

omg! I had no idea they were st. catherines! that's like a 45 minutes drive from home town Toronto!:P

Avaddon8
Avaddon8

TOO HUMAN 2!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! PLEAES PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE! it's the only game besides viking, we asatru folk have...please make too human 2...

DragonessAthena
DragonessAthena

They can't bring back Legacy of Kain because the horrid Crystal Dynamics holds the rights now, and they just want more Tomb Raiders. Here's hoping the rights expire and fall back into Silicon Knights hands.

parrot_of_adun
parrot_of_adun

Hopefully they will get back to Too Human. I'm normally not too big on sequels, but the first left many things to be desired. It wasn't bad, just not what it could have been, so I hope there's a sequel in the future.

Sniper-Gamer
Sniper-Gamer

Glad to see the Canadian government supporting video games. Better than the US where they're trying to get rid of them. :P

Oloryn
Oloryn

Anyone know if they still have any rights to Blood Omen? I wouldn't think so anymore after Crystal Dynamics and Eidos got involved...but anytime I hear any of the devs who worked on the earlier stuff in the Legacy of Kain series making new games, I can't help but get my hopes up...

emperiox
emperiox

Blood Omen 3 NAOW! POR FAVOR BROS?

maxwell97
maxwell97

Ah, government. Why should a company produce a quality, popular product that makes money, when they could churn out mediocre crap and get government funding? That way the companies that DON'T suck are forced to pay, so the companies that DO suck can keep running! Brilliant! But hey, I'm sure it will turn out well. Remember all the great things that Canadian public financing has done for film? Hey, what about Videodrome? Wasn't that a GREAT MOVIE?!? :)

monson21502
monson21502

wow i didnt know gaming devs could get welfare benefits!!!

orb_03_2006
orb_03_2006

Wtf is this? I want Too Human 2, not some crappy movie game.

TacoConductor
TacoConductor

Wow, this is where my $500 in taxes off my paychecks is going? FML