Following on from his work on Microsoft’s Xbox exclusive Halo Infinite, Head of Design Jerry Hook has a new platform in mind: mobile. Joining Diablo Immortal developer NetEase, Hook has founded an all-new game studio: Jar of Sparks.
Halo Infinite dev starts Jar of Sparks
Revealed in a press release, mobile game giant NetEase is opening a new U.S. studio to create narrative-based mobile games. Moving away from the massive free-to-play market, the company’s new studio will be creating premium experiences on mobile.
Headlined by Halo Infinite head of design Jerry Hook, new studio Jar of Sparks aims to revolutionise mobile gaming. Hook, a Halo Infinite lead and OG Xbox Live developer, aims to create a unique mobile studio with AAA standards.
Jerry Hook is not the only veteran developer at the studio. Alongside the Halo dev, other developers from games such as Batman: Arkham, Doom 2016, SSX and more are also on the team. There’s certainly a huge amount of action game devs at the studio.
NetEase is adamant that Jar of Sparks will be 100% focused on narrative games. However, the studio did not explain whether the studio will abstain from multiplayer or free-to-play payment structures.
Hook speaks out
In the press release, Hook explained that the studio is full of veteran developers who have worked for huge companies. A large number of 343 Industries followed Hook to Jar of Sparks, as well as devs from other studios. It’s clear that the studio is full to the brim with talented developers.
“We have built games for some of the biggest companies in gaming, and now it’s time to take a shot at putting our own personal lightning in a bottle,” Hook said. “We want to create something new, innovative and that’s a blast to play. When looking to create a new studio the most critical part of finding the right partner was being aligned on the fundamental goals of having the freedom to take innovative risks and to put the passion of our creators first.”
Hook also explained that NetEase will not be enforcing its typical money-grubbing practices in the studio. Instead, Jar of Sparks will be player-first, attempting to push mobile games away from its current stigma. We’re always going to support that.
“This meant that our player experiences came before the business, which itself is a risk,” he continued. “NetEase came to the table with a strong creative first approach; they demonstrated the same passion we have for our players and building new experiences that we believe players are looking for.”
No details were released on the studio’s first game. Nevertheless, we can’t wait to see what the studio comes up with.