Hardware: Shipbreakers, the spiritual successor to the Homeworld franchise being developed by founding members of Relic Entertainment, is now, thanks to Gearbox Software, officially a Homeworld game.
The game will now be titled Homeworld: Shipbreakers as part of a deal signed by Gearbox and developer Blackbird Interactive at PAX. What's more, Gearbox Software will help Blackbird complete the game with the help of financial and production resources, CEO Randy Pitchford told Polygon today.
"These guys have been funded by private equity, but it's clear it was going to take many millions of dollars more," Pitchford said. "We're giving them the brand and the resources to make this happen. Now, these guys are cooking and with the money they have now, they can grow the team."
The deal, Pitchford said, was signed last Wednesday during PAX Dev, a developer-only event that precedes PAX Prime.
The game formerly known as Hardware: Shipbreakers was announced earlier this year as a spiritual successor — structured as a prequel, however — to Relic's Homeworld franchise.
"Hardware and Homeworld inevitably share much of the same DNA, and that's a good thing," Blackbird CEO Rob Cunningham said at the time. "Homeworld was a fantastic game and we want to recapture that. But what we're offering with Hardware is really a different kind of RTS experience that isn't found in Homeworld or any other RTS."
"The vision is Google Earth meets RTS," he says, where instead of just being about quick micromanagement the strategy was dictated by a long-term macro game over weeks and months, with players staking control of pieces of a much larger planet.