Syndicate copyrighted by EA, Starbreeze

Publisher joined with Swedish studio last June to secure rights to name of Bullfrog's classic action game.


Back in February 2008, EA announced a partnership with The Darkness developer Starbreeze Studios to "reinvent" one of the publisher's "most acclaimed classic franchises." Operating under the internal code name Project RedLime, EA said the game will appear on the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC. Since then, speculation has heavily favored the franchise in question to be a reboot of Bullfrog Productions' cyberpunk tactical action game Syndicate, originally released in 1993.

Starbreeze appears to be having issues suppressing the Syndicate.
Starbreeze appears to be having issues suppressing the Syndicate.

Today, the most convincing evidence yet that Project RedLime is indeed a Syndicate reboot has arisen, courtesy of game-industry snoop Superannuation. As spotted by the gaming blog, Electronic Arts and Starbreeze filed a claim for "Syndicate" with the United States Copyright Office. The filing appears to have been entered into the USCO's online database on June 19, 2009, and is one of four submitted by Starbreeze with the "Syndicate" name.

Should Project RedLime indeed prove to be based in the Syndicate universe, it remains to be seen whether the game will actually make it to retail shelves. In March, EA said that it had canceled one of two projects it planned to publish from the Swedish studio. Beyond Project RedLime, EA had been working with Starbreeze to create a game based on its recently acquired Robert Ludlum license, specifically centered upon the rogue spy Jason Bourne.

Unfortunately, EA and Starbreeze were less than clear on which product had been put on the back burner. However, citing a source within EA, the LA Times reported that the halted game in question was Bourne, and not Project RedLime.

EA had not responded to requests for comment on the copyright filing as of press time.

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