Former Activision bigwigs, Dusty Welch and Chris Archer, have set up a new development company called U4iA with a lofty ambition: to bring hardcore gaming genres to the casual market. Naturally, to begin with, they've set their sights on the absurdly popular FPS genre, with an eye towards bringing a hardcore, Freemium shooter to market in the near future.
'Many studios are making casual games for a core audience,' said Welch, who spent three years heading up the Guitar Hero brand, and helped launch the Call of Duty franchise as Senior VP at Activision back in the day. 'We're making core games for a social audience.'
So what will this title entail? Well, U4iA are describing it as an 'online-only, hardcore freemium, first-person social' title. This 'free-to-play, AAA, hardcore, browser-based [game] for the connected generation' will see a beta drop next year. We'll be interested to see just how the freemium model will work in conjunction with persistent upgrades based on skill.
Oh and apparently the name means 'Euphoria'. No, we didn't see that at first either.