Following the news that Blizzard's StarCraft: Ghost has been pushed back to 2005 in order to give the developer more time to polish the title, it has now emerged that Nihilistic Software is no longer working on the high-profile title.
Nihilistic - best known for its work on Vampire: The Masquerade - was the original developer attached to the project, and dealt with the bulk of programming, artwork and design on the title, under the supervision of a team at Blizzard.
However, the company yesterday confirmed that it has "completed its contribution on StarCraft: Ghost." "They are contracted to begin work on another project in the months ahead," a spokesperson told US website HomeLAN. "Due to the requirements of that obligation and the delay of StarCraft, it was mutually determined that now would be the best time for them to complete their work."
This doesn't mean that work on Ghost - which was originally unveiled at the Tokyo Games Show in 2002, and is the first console-exclusive title to be created in the WarCraft or StarCraft universes - will be transferring back in-house at Blizzard, however.
"In order to prevent the delay of Blizzard's current and future titles, we will continue to evaluate our co-development options," a Blizzard representative announced yesterday - implying that the title will now be sent to a different third-party studio to finish the development work.
Blizzard is currently working on the highly ambitious World of Warcraft, a massively multiplayer title set in its popular WarCraft universe which is currently in public beta and is expected to launch later this year.