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Aardman plays with Bandai Namco

Aardman MD Sean Clarke

UK independent animation studio Aardman has partnered with games publisher Bandai Namco to develop a new piece of IP.

The duo plan to create stories for “current and future platforms” by combining Aardman’s background in creating characters and worlds with Bandai Namco Entertainment Europe’s expertise in publishing and development.

The two firms will be approaching partners in early 2021 with the development materials, Wallace & Gromit and Shaun the Sheep producer Aardman said.

More details on the first project, which will feature interactive storytelling and will exist across multiple different platforms, will be announced at a later date.

Aardman’s work in interactive storytelling includes 2018 game 11-11: Memories Retold and Wallace & Gromit: The Big Fix Up, an immersive augmented reality experience, in collaboration with Fictioneers and backed by funding from UK Research & Innovation.

Bandai Namco, meanwhile, is behind popular video game franchises such as Pac-Man, Soulcalibur and Tekken.

Daniel Efergan, executive creative director of interactive at Aardman, said: “As modern storytellers, the formats we create for are fundamentally changing year on year. This creates a space bubbling with potential, the chance to weave worlds with many windows, allowing people to play, watch or even perform with the IPs we create.

“But no matter what the format, no matter what the platform, the need for characters to fall in love with, epic universes to explore, and, ultimately, great storytelling will always be front and centre.”

Aardman MD Sean Clarke added: “Interactive entertainment is a huge growth area within the entertainment world, and with new emerging technology blurring the lines of watching and playing , we are keen to develop strategic partnerships with partners such as Bandai Namco Entertainment Europe that share our vision of creating new IP that embraces this new world and cement our studio’s reputation as a multi-disciplinary creative hub.”

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