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NetEase Opens Jackalope Games, Headed By MMORPG Vet Jack Emmert, to Create 'Engaging Online Universes'

Christina Gonzalez Updated: Posted:
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NetEase Games has opened its first US-based studio, Jackalope Games, and it will be led by Jack Emmert, formerly of Cryptic Studios and Daybreak Games. 

Jackalope will be based in Austin, Texas, and will operate as an independent studio with creative autonomy. The first project will be backed 100% by NetEase. 

In a press release about the new studio, Emmert says, "NetEase Games is the best possible place for me and my team to thrive. We share the same passion -- to create engaging online universes for gamers worldwide. NetEase Games is providing the support and resources needed to build a great studio and great games." 

Indeed, in the same announcement, Jack Emmert’s “decades of MMORPG experience” and work on titles like City of Heroes, Neverwinter, Star Trek Online, and DC Universe Online are all cited. While there’s no info at this very early stage on just what that project will be, according to a release on the deal, Jackalope will specialize in PC and console development. Citing Emmert’s long MMORPG resume is likely to be a hint, along with the statement about creating engaging universes. If you’re not looking to make a splash in online worlds, why go with a noted MMORPG veteran?

For NetEase Games, this represents a first-party studio and the opportunity to get a foothold in a new territory. NetEase overall has a slate of releases still to come on mobile, with Diablo Immortal (which will be out next month and will also be released on PC), The Lord of the Rings: Rise, and Harry Potter Magic Awakened. NetEase is also the Chinese publisher for EVE Online.

With Jackalope Games, it looks like the aim will be to have a first-party studio with global release intentions. In the announcement, the company noted that while it is an Austin, TX based-studio, remote work will be possible, with global hires possible.

For more, head over to NetEase Games.


Christina Gonzalez

Christina is MMORPG.COM’s News Editor and a contributor since 2011. Always a fan of great community and wondering if the same sort of magic that was her first guild exists anymore.