United Front Games
|Defunct||October 17, 2016|
|Stephen van der Mescht|
United Front Games was a Canadian video game development studio based in Vancouver. They created titles for the PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Portable, PlayStation Vita, Xbox 360, Xbox One, and Microsoft Windows. They are the developers of ModNation Racers and the critical and commercial success Sleeping Dogs in addition to collaborating with other studios on projects like Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition (Crystal Dynamics) and Halo: The Master Chief Collection (343 Industries).
Created in 2007, the studio consisted of former members of EA Black Box, Rockstar Vancouver, Radical Entertainment and Volition, all of which made video games with an open world setting. In 2016, United Front Games officially closed down.
United Front Games was founded in 2007. Its first official title was ModNation Racers, a user-generated content kart racing game, which began production in 2008 and was released in May 2010. In August 2012, they released Sleeping Dogs (previously known as True Crime: Hong Kong). While it is widely believed that Sleeping Dogs was originally conceived as a title in the True Crime series, it was in fact built from the ground up as an original intellectual property. United Front Games also made LittleBigPlanet Karting with help from the series creators Media Molecule.
In early 2013, United Front was working on a sequel to Sleeping Dogs. The game would have picked up after the original game, once again following the previously exploits of (formerly undercover) officer Wei Shen. This time, Shen would be joined by a "conflicted, corrupt partner" named Henry Fang, as they explored China's Pearl River Delta. The player would have the ability to arrest any NPC in the world, and influence a branching storyline that swapped between both Shen and Fang. The game was said to be United Front's most ambitious game, which would have included a second screen app for mobile devices that would be able to interact with the world of the game; Playing as inspector Jane Teng, you would "manage the police force and try to control territories" from your mobile device. If you owned the game, your choices in the mobile game influenced what's happening in the world, the gangs in control, etc. If you summoned a police patrol on a mobile device, you'd see that in-game as a helicopter flying by. If you didn't own the game, the hope was to craft an enjoyable free-to-play game that pointed you towards the console game. Plans for the sequel were eventually scrapped in late 2013 before the project even went into production.
In October 2014, United Front released Sleeping Dogs for the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One called Sleeping Dogs: Definitive Edition. In September 2014, United Front Games announced Triad Wars, an online open world action-adventure game. Originally targeted for an early 2015 release on PC, Triad Wars was game set in the Sleeping Dogs Hong Kong universe. However, in December 2015 United Front announced the January 2016 closure of the Triad Wars open beta.
On October 17, 2016, United Front Games announced closure even though their newest game Smash+Grab, an online multiplayer brawler, had only been out for less than a month on Steam Early Access. No other details have come from United Front Games regarding the closure of the studio.
|2014||Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition||No||Yes||No||No||No||Yes||No||No|
|2014||Halo: The Master Chief Collection||No||No||No||No||No||Yes||No||No|
|2016||Disney Infinity 3.0 – Marvel Battlegrounds||Yes||Yes||Yes||No||Yes||Yes||No||Yes|
|Cancelled||Sleeping Dogs 2||No||Yes||Yes||No||No||Yes||No||No|
- Usher, William (2009-12-14). "True Crime Prepping To Redefine Open-World Action In Fall 2010". Cinema Blend. Retrieved 2012-08-31.
- "United Front Games Official Website". Archived from the original on 2012-08-21. Retrieved 2012-08-31.
- "UFG/Microsoft: Halo: The Master Chief Collection". Retrieved 7 November 2014.
- Gwaltney, Javy. "United Front Games Closes Its Doors". GameInformer.com. Retrieved 18 October 2016.
- Reilly, Luke. "Sleeping Dogs Never Intended to be a True Crime Game". IGN.
- "Tomb Raider Definitive Edition Announced". Retrieved 25 April 2014.
- "Inside the Ambitious 'Sleeping Dogs' Sequel We'll Never Get to Play". Vice Media. November 22, 2016. Retrieved September 21, 2019.
- McWhertor, Michael (2014-08-06). "Sleeping Dogs coming to PS4, Xbox One this October". Polygon. Retrieved 2014-08-06.
- Martin, Michael (2014-09-23). "UNITED FRONT GAMES OFFICIALLY ANNOUNCES TRIAD WARS FOR PC". IGN. Retrieved 2014-09-23.
- "Triad Wars on Twitter: "The Triad Wars beta will shut down on January 20th, 2016. ... "".