The upcoming Vampire: The Masquerade — Bloodlines 2 has lost creative director Ka’ai Cluney and lead writer Brian Mitsoda.
In a post from developer Hardsuit Labs and publisher Paradox Interactive on the game's website, the two companies said that the duo was no longer involved in the making of Bloodlines 2. No reason is given for why they were dropped from development.
They did announce that Ubisoft and Relic Entertainment vet Alexandre Mandryka would be joining the team as a creative consultant to help finish development.
"Lead narrative designer Brian Mitsoda and creative director Ka’ai Cluney are no longer part of the team at Hardsuit Labs. This was a joint decision made by the leadership of Hardsuit Labs and Paradox Interactive," the two companies wrote.
"We appreciate, and value, the contributions of Brian and Ka’ai, which were instrumental in establishing the game's storyline and dark tone and have helped to ensure that we are making a true successor to the iconic Bloodlines. We wish them both the best in their future endeavours.
"With that, we are excited to announce that Alexandre Mandryka has come aboard as Creative Consultant, filling the creative director role for Bloodlines 2, and will help us in the final stages of development. Alexandre is committed to following the vision that is in place, and successfully bringing Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines 2 to the fans.
"Alexandre has been in the industry for more than 20 years and has worked on iconic franchises such as Assassin’s Creed, Warhammer 40,000, Far Cry, and more. With a long history of shipping excellent franchises, we are excited with what Alexandre brings to the game and the World of Darkness.
"These changes to the team are focused on one thing: to bring you the best possible Vampire: The Masquerade game. We will share further updates as they occur."
In a statement to Rock Paper Shotgun, Mitsoda said that he was "suddenly terminated" from the project in July.
"That this came as a shock to me is underselling it," he said.
"I’ve worked on Bloodlines 2 for almost five years. The story and main cast was initially conceived in my living room. I helped develop the pitch for Hardsuit Labs and helped pitch the project to Paradox in Las Vegas. I’ve been in charge of the narrative since the beginning, working long days and sometimes weekends to deliver a successor to Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines, and I’ve never been led to believe that I hadn’t succeeded.
"I was not part of the conversations that led to the decision to delay production, and to my knowledge, there were no delays caused by the Bloodlines 2 narrative development. I am confident and proud of the work that I and my team put forward. When that work will be seen and what form it will take is unknown to me.
"It was a pleasure to work on this game and with many people at Hardsuit Labs and Paradox and I’m sorry I won’t be able to see it to the end. I spent years on some of the best characters and dialogue that I ever wrote. It’s meant a lot to hear from the Bloodlines community and I do hope that what’s finally delivered is as satisfying as I intended it to be. Thanks to all of you who supported me throughout the project.”