Former Bend Studio director Jeff Ross recently revealed that he pitched an open-world Resistance sequel after Sony made it clear it had no interest in a Days Gone 2. There were also talks of a new Syphon Filter reboot. But none of these projects made it very far, according to Ross in a new interview with David Jaffe.
On David Jaffe’s January 6 livestream, Ross discussed how uninterested Sony seemed to be in a Days Gone sequel pitch, calling it an “uphill battle,” and ultimately the studio failed to convince Sony the idea would work before Ross left Bend in 2020 after nearly two decades.
“It was very obvious that we shouldn’t be talking about Days Gone when we were working on the pitch [for Bend’s next game,]” explained Ross. “It was clear that it was a non-starter, and there was nothing in the pitch that made the local manager and his boss feel good about it.”
He later added that it seemed Sony was interested in nearly anything but Days Gone 2.
Following the lack of interest in Days Gone 2, Ross and the studio then tried to pitch another idea to Sony: A new Resistance game. But this time, it would be an open-world shooter.
“The pitch I was making was…open-world Resistance would be fucking rad,” said Ross. “There were all of these open-world loops that we figured out. It almost wrote itself with Resistance. There were so many aspects of that property that lent itself to open-world gameplay.”
Sony also passed on that idea, which Ross theorized could have been because the last Resistance game might not have sold well enough to justify a reboot or sequel. Interestingly, Microsoft’s big-name shooter franchise, Halo, went open-world last year to great success. (I also want to share that Resistance 3 is fucking awesome and one of my favorite games. If someone wants to remaster those games or just the third, I’d be so happy. Okay, back to the story.)
During the interview, Ross also claimed Sony asked him and the Bend team to reboot the long-dormant third-person action series, Syphon Filter. However, Ross didn’t feel like this was a “genuine” plan at the time.
“It was almost like a keep-them-busy-type of question: ‘Hey guys, why don’t you come up with something for Syphon Filter while we figure out what we’re confident in pitching.’ So, I don’t think it was ever genuine,” Ross told Jaffe.
He also added that he had “zero ideas” on how to reboot that franchise and admitted he wasn’t interested at all in the idea.
Earlier this week, Ross tweeted about Sony’s reaction following the release of 2019’s Days Gone. Though Ross claims the PlayStation 4 open-world zombie game sold 8 million copies in less than two years, he explained that it was still considered a “disappointment” in the eyes of management. This tweet came as a reaction to the news that Ghost of Tsushima had sold 8 million copies and was being celebrated by Sony as a big success.
Back at Bend Studio, in June 2021, Sony confirmed that the team was working on a new IP that would build on the “deep open-world systems that they developed with Days Gone.” So it seems that if Sony has any plans for a Days Gone 2, a new Syphon Filter, or a Resistance reboot, it’s still not happening at Bend Studio. While I know many might be sad about not getting a new Days Gone or an open-world Resistance game, I’m just happy to hear that Bend Studio is still alive and working on something. In this industry, one or two flops can sink your ship, leading to layoffs and studio shutdowns.