The Principle Technical Artist for the Saints Row reboot has left, and is now working with Undead Labs; possibly on State of Decay 3.
Klobrille, a Twitter account dedicated to news from Xbox Game Studios, recently uncovered changes to Mitri Van’s LinkedIn profile. While Van was the Principle Technical Artist at Deep Silver Volition, he is now working as a Principle Technical Artist at Undead Labs.
Van had worked at Deep Silver Volition since December 1999; with recent work including Technical Art Director, Cinematics Pipeline and Asset Integration, and Quick Time Event Pipeline and Asset Integration for Saints Row 5. As of November 2022 however, he is now likely working on State of Decay 3; though an unannounced project is not impossible.
The new Saints Row game, officially titled “Saints Row,” has been described as a reboot for the franchise; and not always in a positive manner. As previously reported; players form their own criminal empire from scratch in Santo Ileso, taking on other gangs to become self-made. Take down Los Panteros, The Idols, and Marshall in their quest to take over the city.
Since the game’s reveal fans have expressed widespread concerns and backlash over the direction the reboot was taking the series; though dislikes on trailers have now been hidden thanks to the mass removal of dislikes on YouTube.
The games official Twitter account replied to one fan that they were “not backing down on this;” while other interviews with developers had them stating the tone of past games was “not something that we feel like we want to do today.” When the game was recently delayed, it was emphasized there would be no changes to story or characters.
While a major member of the development team leaving may seem damning, the reason may be far more mundane. It may simply be that the art assets are now completed, and Van’s work has concluded. It is also worth noting that Van was most likely working to a contract, with orders from his superiors on exactly how the game would look.
Saints Row launches August 23rd, 2022 on Windows PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S.