Gilbert departs Hothead, DeathSpank done

Secret of Monkey Island creator leaves position at Canadian studio as development on action RPG concludes; certification on 360, PS3, [REDACTED] in progress.

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Ron Gilbert got his wish in early 2008, when Hothead Games announced that it had installed the Secret of Monkey Island creator as its creative director and agreed to develop his hard-to-pitch project, DeathSpank. However, Gilbert's time at Hothead is ending along with the action role-playing game's development, as the veteran game designer announced through his personal blog this week that he has parted ways with the company.

These naughty, naughty ogres are in for a spanking.
These naughty, naughty ogres are in for a spanking.

"I wanted to let all the Premium Gold Level Grumpy Gamer subscribers know that I left Hothead," said Gilbert. "When I started working there two years ago, my goal was to make DeathSpank the most awesome game ever made and have it win a Nobel Prize and the early word out of Stockholm is that DeathSpank is neck-in-neck with some string theory dweeb (eleven dimensions my a**)."

Gilbert also confirmed that DeathSpank has left the production phase and will start down "that long and winding road of certification and testing of the Xbox and PS3 and [REDACTED] versions." (Redacted in original.) Last month, Electronic Arts said that it would publish the effort on Microsoft and Sony's consoles through its EA Partners program.

Though initially announced as an episodic game a la Hothead's Penny Arcade Adventures, DeathSpank evolved into a full downloadable title for Xbox Live and the PlayStation Network. Along with its adventure-game-style storyline and puzzles, DeathSpank also features a strong action RPG element, where gamers cut their way through swaths of enemies to gain items and level up.

For more on DeathSpank, check out GameSpot's most recent preview.

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