Spyro studio Toys for Bob secures deal with Microsoft for its first independent game

And it will be “similar to games Toys for Bob has made in the past”.

Spyro studio Toys for Bob has reportedly reached an agreement with Microsoft for its first independent game.

That’s according to Window Central’s Jaz Corden, who revealed over the weekend that the deal first teased by studio heads Paul Yan and Avery Lodato has now been finalised.

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Toys for Bob released Crash Team Rumble last year.

Toys for Bob – the Activision Blizzard studio behind the likes of Skylanders, Crash Bandicoot 4, and the Spyro remasters – announced it was parting ways with Activision to become an independent company again back in January. It also said that it was “exploring a possible partnership” with Microsoft as development on its new game gets underway.

“Sources have indicated to me previously that Toys for Bob’s culture didn’t gel well with Activision’s oft-restrictive corporate mandates, and they were excited for the opportunity to spin out as independent in agreement with Microsoft,” Corden said.

“When they initially spun out, they released a statement indicating that they were ‘confident’ they would work with Activision and Xbox in the future and that they were exploring a “possible” partnership. It now seems those talks have bared fruit.”

“During a recent townhall meeting described to us by sources familiar with the event, a staffer asked the panellists about Toys for Bob, given that they’re now going independent separate from Microsoft and Activision,” Corden added. “Toys for Bob’s leadership was adamant about keeping the team together, and also about returning to the style of game the studio is known for.

“Microsoft referenced how they spun out Twisted Pixel in the past, as an alternative option to shuttering studios. Matt Booty, now leading Xbox’s game content division, reportedly said that an agreement has now been reached between Xbox and Toys for Bob for their first game as an independent studio. However, he stopped short of describing exactly what it will be, although he did say something along the lines of, and I’m paraphrasing, ‘it will be similar to games Toys for Bob has made in the past’.”

Toys for Bob, which was founded back in 1989, formed a publishing partnership with Activision in the 2000s that would lead to the studio’s acquisition by the publisher in 2005. It has been part of Activision Blizzard ever since, initially working on the hugely popular toys-to-life Skylanders series before developing 2018 remaster Spyro Reignited Trilogy and 2020’s well-received Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time. Since then, it’s served as a support studio for Call of Duty while also releasing last year’s Crash Team Rumble.

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