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EA Merges Criterion, Codemasters Cheshire for Need for Speed Development

Codemasters Cheshire will now operate as part of Criterion Games.
Codemasters Cheshire will now operate as part of Criterion Games. / Image courtesy of Electronic Arts

Electronic Arts has merged the development teams at Codemasters Cheshire and Criterion Games into a single Need for Speed-focused collection of developers.

Staff at each of the studios will continue to work out of their respective U.K. offices — Codemasters in Cheshire, Criterion in Guildford — while pouring their combined extensive experience making racing games into the future of the Need for Speed franchise.

"We can confirm Criterion Games and the development team at Codemasters Cheshire are officially coming together to create the future of @NeedforSpeed, forming one Criterion studio with two location hubs," Codemasters tweeted Thursday.

"This integration builds off the close partnership the two studios have developed over the past few months," the studio continued. "Sharing common values and similar cultures, we strongly believe unifying the huge wealth of expertise across both teams will help us to deliver the best racing experiences we can for our players."

The Need for Speed title on which the two studios will collaborate is slated to launch in November, and will reportedly be set in a fictionalized Chicago combining a photo-realistic art style with anime-inspired elements.

Codemasters Birmingham will continue to work on the Formula 1 series, reports.

EA acquired Codemasters, for $1.2 billion in 2021. The company is headquartered in Southam, and has offices in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and Pune, India.