Brendan “PlayerUnknown” Greene, the man whose modding and design efforts helped create the Battle Royale genre as we know it, has left PUBG’s parent company Krafton to form his own development studio.
Greene, whose work on stuff like DayZ’s Battle Royale mode and H1Z1 led to the creation of PlayerUnknown Battlegrounds—along the way inspiring everything from Fortnite’s own Battle Royale mode and the rest that came in their wake—had been working with Korean gaming company Krafton since 2016.
By 2019 however, Greene had stopped direct involvement on PUBG, and had instead moved to Amsterdam to head up Krafton’s PUBG Special Projects, where he began development of a new game tentatively called Prologue, which would be, “an exploration of new technologies and gameplay.”
Greene is staying in Amsterdam to head up this new company, called Playerunknown Productions, which will be independent, but in which Krafton will “hold a minority stake.” In a statement released earlier today, Greene says of the move:
I’m so very grateful to everyone at PUBG and KRAFTON for taking a chance on me and for the opportunities they afforded me over the past four years. Today, I’m excited to take the next step on my journey to create the kind of experience I’ve envisaged for years. Again, I’m thankful for everyone at KRAFTON for supporting my plans, and I’ll have more to reveal more about our project at a later date.
There’s obviously no word on what exactly his studio is working on, though a press release accompanying the news does mention, “the team are exploring the systems needed to enable massive scale within open-world games.”
While this won’t have any effect whatsoever on PUBG, which has been doing just fine without him for the last two years—even now it’s the 7th most popular game on Steam, and that’s just the PC version—it’ll be interesting to see what this new studio can come up with now they’ve got the time and space to try something else.