Former Assassin’s Creed producer and EA manager Jade Raymond announced the formation of a new Montreal-based independent studio called Haven today. Its first project will be a brand new IP being developed for PlayStation, she wrote in a post over on the company’s blog.
“And so today I’m announcing Haven, an independent studio where many of the talented game developers I have worked with for years (and love dearly!) are coming together to do what we are most passionate about,” wrote the game development veteran. “Because we believe in the power of games to bring joy to people’s lives. And Sony does, too. Their commitment to excellence is unmatched. It’s why I couldn’t be happier for their backing and support.”
It’s unclear from the announcement if Sony is funding the studio itself, or only the development of its first game, which Raymond calls “an unannounced new IP for PlayStation.” Sony did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Raymond most recently led first-party game development at Google for its Stadia video game streaming platform. Last month, however, the company suddenly announced Raymond’s departure and that it would shutting down its internal studios less than two years after they were first revealed.
“I am proud of the team we built at Stadia Games and Entertainment, and the ground-breaking work on exclusive games for the platform,” she told Kotaku in a statement at the time. “It was a difficult decision to take on a new opportunity, and I will be forever grateful to this team for everything we learned and achieved together.”
Raymond got her start in the games industry working on The Sims Online for EA. Later she moved on to producing the Assassin’s Creed series at Ubisoft. In 2010, the French publisher charged Raymond with spear-heading the creation of a new studio in Toronto to develop big budget games, including Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell: Blacklist. That studio, which Raymond left for EA back in 2014, was one of the Ubisoft offices wracked by allegations of sexual misconduct and harassment last summer.
“We understand the challenges and rewards of building creative teams from the ground up, as does Jade with her wealth of experience helming many of gaming’s biggest franchises,” PlayStation Studios head Hermen Hulst said in a press release today. “We’re confident in and excited for the bright future of Haven Studios and its first project, currently in development.”