New Daybreak Studio “Dimensional Ink” Interview: Past, Present and Future

Dimensional Ink Games was born last month after Daybreak Game Company decided to reorganize its internal structure to form three separate divisions – Darkpaw Games and Rogue Planet Games being the other two. Comprising the same core team behind DC Universe Online, Dimensional Ink is currently working on a brand new massively multiplayer online (MMO) game that remains to be officially announced. That being said, the developer is not afraid of leaving a few breadcrumbs on the trail for everyone to follow.

Speaking with SegmentNext in a recent interview, Dimensional Ink CEO Jack Emmert teased that his studio is on a hiring spree and anyone who “wants to be part of the next great MMO” is warmly invited.

Right now Dimensional Ink, which is based in Austin, is hiring! So, if you LOVE the games we’ve done– or want to be part of the next great MMO – then run (don’t walk) to our website to view our job listings and apply.

Emmert was also quite candid in how he has been “doing” MMO games for nearly two decades and hence, is “probably where we [Dimensional Ink] will stay focused in the near future” unless an idea for a completely different game comes up. When asked about the next-generation consoles, Emmert noted that his studio is “absolutely looking at these platforms” and that players should expect Dimensional Ink to make some reveals down the road.

On the question of microtransactions, a backbone of every MMO and live service game, Emmert stated that Dimensional Ink has great respect for the free-to-play model. Primarily because it forces developers to focus on player-loved content, an aspect that Emmert marked as “vital” to sustain an online community.

Dimensional Ink is a big fan of the free-to-play model. I believe it forces us to focus 100% on the players and what they want. As a developer of live service MMO games, we need to deliver compelling updates to keep the players engaged, which also means creating content that players actually want to purchase.

Our internal development mantra is “pay or play” – someone should be able to play to get what they want – or they can pay. Either way, every player is vital for the community and in-game economy.

Putting the pieces together, this upcoming “high profile action MMO” from Dimensional Ink will be targeting PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X. The game will also be free to play, or at the very least be a one-time purchase in exchange for years of post-release content support. Considering that Emmert wants to continue supporting DC Universe Online, despite the game being nine years old, it would be unlikely for him to work on a new MMO game with a shorter lifespan.

I’m trying to get DC Universe Online to tie EverQuest’s 20-year anniversary! There are very few worlds as exciting to play as DC Comics and the number of stories are endless, so we have many, many years to go with DC Universe.

Furthermore, Emmert showered praise on the capabilities of the next-generation consoles. He stated that they will allow Dimensional Ink to “create virtual worlds without a ton of restrictions”. He particularly noted that MMO games are traditionally limited by aging technology but PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X will change all of that. “We can now focus more on the game content and systems,” he said. “It’s very exciting, even liberating.”

Under the publishing guidelines of Daybreak, Dimensional Ink will continue to maintain DC Universe Online while working on the unannounced project. Darkpaw will continue focusing on the Everquest franchise, and Rogue Planet on PlanetSide alongside a new first-person MMO shooter.