Activision empties plate as Codemasters swallows Swordfish

by: Randy -
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Codemasters (DiRT, GRiD) announced acquisition of Swordfish (50 Cent: Blood on the Sand), officially taking the Birmingham, England developer off Activision Vivendi's plate.  Trevor Williams, founder and managing director of Swordfish retains his title and position but will now be reporting to Gavin Cheshire, VP of Codemasters.  Swordfish becomes Codemasters' fourth major development hub; and while no new games are currently announced from Swordfish, they'll be utilizing Codemasters' proprietary EGO Engine for future development -- the same engine driving DiRT, GRiD, and the upcoming Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising.

Codemasters' New Birmingham Studio to be led by

Swordfish Founder Trevor Williams


UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. Nov. 14, 2008 – Facilitating an accelerated expansion of its development talent base, Codemasters® today announced it has reached an agreement with Activision Vivendi to take over Swordfish Studios, the Birmingham-based games development house. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.


The deal brings immediate additional resource to Codemasters' development operations. Under the terms of the agreement Swordfish Studio's development team will be integrated and managed as part of Codemasters' network of studios. Trevor Williams, founder and managing director of Swordfish Studios, will continue to lead the studio reporting to Gavin Cheshire, VP, Codemasters Studios.


Carrying the Codemasters Studios imprint, the studio will create original content using the company's proprietary EGO Engine, the technology behind racing hits Colin McRae: DiRT and Race Driver: GRID and is currently powering the highly-anticipated Operation Flashpoint: Dragon Rising.


"We are committed to growing our studio operations across multiple facilities and increasing the internal capability of Codemasters' creative resource," said Gavin Cheshire, VP, Codemasters Studios. "There is a strong heritage and a compatible skill set, which has enabled us to fast track growth plans and allows for ease of management. Codemasters has ramped up as a UK games development powerhouse with a scalable support infrastructure that allows for rapid deployment of the highly versatile EGO Engine."


With a 15-year heritage, Swordfish is a past recipient of Best UK Studio in the Develop Industry Excellence Awards and Best Company in the TIGA Awards. Swordfish and Codemasters have partnered previously for the development of hit sports titles Brian Lara International Cricket 2005 and Jonah Lomu Rugby. Most recently Swordfish led the creation of 50 Cent: Blood on the Sand for Vivendi.


The Birmingham studio becomes the Codemasters' fourth major development hub and joins established operations Codemasters Studios Guildford (UK), Codemasters Studios Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) and its central base which operates from Codemasters' corporate headquarters in Warwickshire (UK).


Codemasters continues its recruitment drive for development talent in all studios locations, details of positions are available at or email

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