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Respawn founder moves to DICE LA; studio to rebrand and work on new game

Zampella headed Apex Legends and Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order, and is set to make a new game with DICE LA

Respawn Entertainment has been on fire this year. Not only is it quietly ticking along with Titanfall 2, but the developer released Apex Legends and Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order in the same year. Like I said, on fire. And the man at the helm of Respawn, Vince Zampella, is now moving on to lead DICE LA to do what he does best: make a new game (via LA Times).

Zampella has been part of development teams like Infinity Ward, the studio behind the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare series, as well as having a hand in the Medal of Honor series as part of studio 2015 Games. He then went on to create the Respawn Entertainment with Jason West, in 2010. Now after the successes of Apex Legends and Jedi: Fallen Order (and the small detail of Respawn being bought by EA in 2017), Zampella is leading DICE LA in a new direction.

In these next steps, Zampella notes that DICE LA will probably rebrand, and perhaps even lose the ‘DICE’ part of the name. DICE LA is connected to DICE Stockholm, the base of DICE operations, and has acted more as a support to the Stockholm studio, rather than working on their own products.

The move is being managed by Laura Miele, EA’s chief studio’s officer, who says “[DICE LA] can go from a support team to a full standalone studio to create a new game offering.” In 2020, and with Zampella helping, the studio is set to expand, rebrand, and finally create a game of its own. It is unclear what this means for DICE Stockholm’s future games.

DICE is the company behind titles such as Star Wars Battlefront 1 and 2, the Battlefield series, and the Mirror’s Edge games. Perhaps the appeal of Zampella moving to DICE LA, in part, comes from a shared background in developing Star Wars games.

In Zampella’s words, he wants to make something “bigger and funnerer – use that word: ‘Funnerer.’”