An anonymously-sourced report on Shacknews asserts that a contract dispute has kept Human Head off the Bethesda-published game since late last year.
After we were informed yesterday of Prey 2's slide from 2012 to 2013, a report began making the rounds later in the afternoon at Shacknews detailing a rift between Human Head Studios and Bethesda owner ZeniMax Media.
According to the unnamed source who was purportedly able to provide firsthand information about the dealings between the two companies, Human Head discontinued work on the open world FPS last November as a tactic to get more favorable terms in their working contact with ZeniMax. Apparently, negotiations were progressing but the lack of work necessitated the layoff of many Human Head employees with the eventual hope of bringing them back on board when Prey 2 resumed production. According to Shacknews' source, Human Head was confident that negotiations were headed in that direction until March 2nd, when something seems to have stalled or outright soured the talks.
According to the piece, since January ZeniMax has been mostly uncommunicative with Human Head, leaving the team in the dark as to the status of the game. When I reached out for additional comment yesterday with a Bethesda rep, they were unable to say more at this time beyond their initial statement about the rationale for the delay into next year.
[Source: Shacknews via Eurogamer]