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More new IP coming from SOE

Sony Online Entertainment president John Smedley has told <i>GamesIndustry.biz</i> that the company is set to launch an as yet unannounced new IP later this year.

Sony Online Entertainment president John Smedley has told GamesIndustry.biz that the company is set to launch an as yet unannounced new IP later this year.

Smedley was speaking at the DICE Summit in Las Vegas, which kicked off yesterday with a keynote presentation from Sony Pictures Digital boss Yair Landau.

During his speech Landau showed a clip of the company's new spy-themed MMO, stating, "We think this will take espionage entertainment to a new level."

But according to Smedley, "It's not really just an espionage game. It's a combination of espionage... Think 24 meets Alias meets Counterstrike."

He went on to reveal that SOE has several new IPs in the works, adding, "We have one coming out late this calendar year, and it hasn't even been announced."

Landau's keynote began with a discussion of the idea that "people move ideas back and forth from work to play". He observed, "If you can conceive of it, we can make it real."

Landau pointed to the visceral realism in Saving Private Ryan, stating, "What was really great about it was it launched a whole broad base of gameplay." He cited the games that followed - Medal of Honor, Call of Duty and Company of Heroes.

"When you look at what Saving Private Ryan did theatrically, it's a fraction of what those games have done," said Landau, who believes this is an indication of where the industry is going. "It's driving a lot of what we're trying to do from a Sony Online Entertainment standpoint."

"We've historically been very much in the men-in-tights genre, a lot of guys running around in[sic] broadswords," Landau said. "But we're now looking at a broader genre... We've started to immerse ourselves into the world of espionage."

Landau thinks the key to where this genre goes from a gaming standpoint "is how make it more real for you. You don't get to just play Bond, but you get to play yourself in this environment".

SOE's Seattle office is charged with the task of "putting a multiplayer environment in an espionage world, with both cooperative, team-oriented objectives and PVP," according to Landau.

"We think it's okay if you have MMOs where you wear tuxedos and carry a silencer, not just tights and a mace."

Sony has yet to announce the official name of the title, but Landau joked, "It's code-named Vista because we pushed it back about a year."