Amid the new wave of conversations about the cancellation of Days Gone 2, game director Jeff Ross has talked about his vision for a potential sequel.
Ross opened up about Days Gone 2 in an interview with USA Today’s FTW. He noted that Bend Studio didn’t add a lot of features to the first game due to the lack of time or experience. So the team planned to implement a lot of ideas in the sequel.
“I just see that as a trilogy,” Ross said. “First games — Batman: Arkham, the first Uncharted — are basic. They are a platform to build on top of for subsequent titles.”
What did Jeff Ross want to add in Days Gone 2?
- Days Gone 2 would have focused on Deacon’s relationship with Sarah. Despite the reunion, they might not have been happy together. The whole narrative would have also kept the heavy tone of the original game.
- Players would have been able to ride the bike, as well as use some NERO tech. Ross also wanted to implement the swimming mechanic (fun fact: 75% of players died by drowning in Days Gone).
- In Days Gone 2, there would have been no slow stealth sections where players would have instantly died after one fail.
- Ross wanted to focus on the world’s ecology, with bears digging through trash and wolves hunting more dynamically. So every enemy would have had more behavior patterns.
Jeff Ross noted that Bend Studio has changed its structure completely after shipping Days Gone. Instead of having one leader, the team decided to make a creative committee, partly because of the negative experience some members had working on the first game. Ross, however, didn’t like the idea at all.
“I was like, ‘Hey, it doesn’t even have to be me. It can be anybody, but we need one person where the buck stops.’” he said. “And it wasn’t happening. I like to collaborate and get people’s ideas, but somebody has to make a call on direction.”
Ross, who eventually left Sony, recently tweeted about Days Gone selling over 8 million units on PS4, with about a million more copies sold on Steam. So he still can’t figure out why the company canceled the sequel while greenlighting other titles. Ross thinks that this decision was partly explained by poor critical reception as the first game received 71 on Metacritic.
Bend Studio is now working on a brand new IP, which is not connected to Days Gone.