Is Killer Instinct being made by Zenimax? Wait let me explain

Perhaps the new Killer Instinct is being made by a studio in Zenmiax? When Max was on last week for the podcast he said to go and watch The “Hold back to block” documentary on how Killer Instinct got made. Over the course of the film, you got to see all of the core people responsible for the game. Every person who was involved internally at Xbox that oversaw development of Killer Instinct are still at Xbox via LinkedIn. Ken Lobb, Earnest Yueng, Adam Isgreen, James Goddard, all still at Xbox. And every member of the core Double Helix team is still within driving distance of each other in California. Brandon Meesak, lead programmer at Blizzard. Michael Willette, lead producer still at Amazon. However, John Bautista who was the gameplay director, is at Zenimax Online new studio in San Diego. Maybe there is a reunion party happening at Zenmiax Online San Diego and pre production has started with John Bautista?

Just a thought, kind of want to broach this subject so Nick on the podcast. See what he thinks

1 Like

Considering that the only known project we know from Zenumax online is a new IP I wouldn’t bet on it.


I still think Iron Galaxy is on board. They are apparently working on a new IP, but they’ve been really quiet. They do have multiple teams and they could easily have a small group working on it before they shift more people over.

Nick said it is not Iron Galaxy.

Zenimax Bethesda have no fighting game expertise studio Dev though but i would not be shock if they announce at E3 that a New KI game is being made just not from Bethesda.

If Zenimax is making it, that is cool. The same thing if nWay is making it. I honestly just want to see a sequel.

Maybe if Microsoft could work out a deal with Tencent, to allow SNK to make the game that could be a possibility too.

I know no company or corporation is completely clean or anything, but I kinda hope they don’t do business with SNK.

It’s not impossible. :man_shrugging:

ZOS has hundreds of employees, so it wouldn’t disrupt much of the development of other things to assemble a small team to put together the systems by using existing employees (Bautista) and the MS contingent (Willette, Lobb, Goddard – think Isgreen in helming AoE now, but sure he could feed in) and maybe second a bunch off others from various projects.

The question is what would happen when it came to full development? Would imagine you would then want work-for-hire studios to do the heavy lifting rather than take significant resource off ZOS other projects.

At the same time, is there any burning deadline to get the new IP MMO out? ESO is still doing well, and now that they are part of MS they don’t have the need to constantly deliver maximum revenue. Probably wouldn’t’ disrupt anything critical to take it on.

Who knows…

I like the theory, but no, it’s not a Zenimax studio


On the podcast with Max someone said that it would have to be made by someone who understands KI and all the systems the game has in place. Fighting games aren’t the kind of games you can just throw any dev at and let them do what they want.

Whoever’s making the new KI I hope they still keep the hype the previous had. It’s just so important they find the right people to make it.

I don’t really go along with this idea that a studio can only make one type of game – that there are FPS studios who can only make FPS games and FG studios who can only make FG. Most studios have staff that have been around the block and been involved in many different types of games.

There are some specialisms that are absolutely vital – like rollback netcode – but the idea that the various systems would be too complex for any but an very select number of developers? No.

Especially not for a sequel where you would expect that they would start work by replicating what went before and building on it.

Experience of fighting games is definitely a plus, but I don’t think it’s a necessity.

Edit: for example, Double Helix had never made a fighting game before KI 2013.

Double Helix may have never made a fighter (although they did make a really good beat em up based on Buffy The Vampire Slayer, back when they were The Collective. Low key one of the og xbox’s best exclusives) they did have many people with fighting game experience on the team as I recall. Either way fighters are really hard to make, and even harder to make good. MS will have to be very careful with who they pick for KI. I still wonder if the reason people haven’t found out what studio could be making is because they’re building one from the ground up for it?


Fighting games are very unique

Developers are definitely talented enough to make different types of games, people constantly talking about devs going from first person to third person or vice versa like it’s some huge hurdle has always been stupid

and certainly some of that talent will translate to a fighting game whether its artists, music, voice acting, UI etc but when it comes to the actual gameplay, thats where it gets tricky

Double Helix had worked on a cancelled Justice League game that had a fighting game component to it so they had some fighting game combat experience. They used that game as a base for their Green Lantern game. Which is how they got on the radar for MS for KI.

It probably depends how much budget goes into it and if Microsoft is willing to hire a dev owned by a third party publisher. Bandai Namco could be a good candidate in that they have teams coming off Soul Calibur VI and Smash Ultimate with lots of fighting game experience. While MS could work out how to share netcode with Tekken Project to help them solve a pretty big problem for that series.

Fair, but neither did Double Helix, nor Iron Galaxy. So anything is possibly

Zenimax Online is also either working on a new title based on one of ID Softwares properties or hiring to assist ID software for a game. They hired at least 4 positions this year that required knowledge of ID Software properties.

MS should get the Heretic/Hexen IP from Activision/Raven.


Because you know who is making it now… right?

Meme Think GIF

1 Like


I legit don’t. I probably would have been allowed to leak it by now if I did

1 Like