A new studio formed by former developers from CD Projekt Red, the creators of The Witcher and Cyberpunk 2077 games, has officially announced its first game titled “Dawnwalker”. The studio, Rebel Wolves, aims to create story-driven RPGs focusing on complex narratives and moral choices.
Rebel Wolves Founded by Veterans of The Witcher and Cyberpunk 2077
Rebel Wolves was founded in 2021 by former CD Projekt Red developers including game director Konrad Tomaszkiewicz and lead quest designer Jakub Szamałek. Other key members include animation director Tamara Zawada and senior gameplay designer Karolina Stachyra.
The team came together out of a desire to get back to their roots of creating intricate RPG narratives after feeling limited by the scope and processes at the larger CD Projekt Red. As Tomaszkiewicz told Inverse:
“We want to focus on the things we are best at – creating inspiring stories and deep RPG systems. We felt limited by the formalities and processes of working for a huge studio.”
With Rebel Wolves, the team aims to create RPGs inspired by franchises like The Witcher, Vampire: The Masquerade and Legacy of Kain while focusing on complex branching narratives and moral choices.
Dawnwalker Revealed as Dark Fantasy RPG Focusing on Player Choice
On January 11th, 2023, Rebel Wolves officially revealed their debut game titled “Dawnwalker”. Described as a “story-driven dark fantasy RPG”, Dawnwalker seems to be heavily inspired by The Witcher series with occult themes and moral choices.
The announcement was accompanied by a teaser image showing a humanoid character with fangs, possibly suggesting vampire elements. The tied hands and kneeling pose hint at a unwilling transformation, evoking concepts like immortality and loss of humanity.
While details remain scarce, Rebel Wolves says Dawnwalker will focus on choices, consequences and world reactivity – key pillars of the studio’s design philosophy.
In an interview with GamesRadar, narrative director Jakub Szamałek explained:
“We want to focus on things like choices and consequences. We want reactive worlds and to represent moral doubts within gameplay mechanics. We believe these things are crucial for getting players immersed in the story.”
The game has entered early alpha stages of development as Rebel Wolves expands its team.
Key Creative Leads Join Rebel Wolves Team
In a major boost to the 25-person studio, Rebel Wolves has added key new members to its leadership including creative director Mateusz Tomaszkiewicz.
Tomaszkiewicz was previously the quest director for The Witcher 3 and cyberpunk 2077. He joined Rebel Wolves in December 2022 in a lead creative role overseeing the studio’s inaugural project Dawnwalker.
As reported by MCVUK, Tomaszkiewicz will guide and shape the creative vision for Dawnwalker, building on his previous experience as “one of the main architects behind the multi-award winning story and quests of The Witcher 3”.
Other recent hires include senior gameplay designer Karolina Stachyra and animation director Tamara Zawada. Stachyra was a key figure behind the combat systems in The Witcher 2 and 3.
|Quest Director for The Witcher 3 and Cyberpunk 2077
|Senior Gameplay Designer on The Witcher 2 and 3
|Senior Gameplay Designer
|Animation Director on The Witcher 3
The new appointments suggest Rebel Wolves is staffing up key leadership positions to carry the 25-person studio through its growth phase over the coming years.
What’s Next for Rebel Wolves and Dawnwalker
With the reveal of Dawnwalker marking a major milestone, Rebel Wolves will be focused on expanding development on its inaugural title through 2024.
In an interview with PCGamesN, studio head Konrad Tomaszkiewicz said their goal is to create an immersive RPG experience akin to titles they worked on in the past:
“We want to recapture the feeling from our early days at CD Projekt Red – when we were working on The Witcher and The Witcher 2 – that spark of creativity and enthusiasm.”
While the game remains in early alpha state, the team size is expanding rapidly. With key new appointments to the leadership team, Rebel Wolves seem to be laying the foundations for a multi-year development roadmap on Dawnwalker.
There is still much secrecy around Dawnwalker’s setting, story and gameplay. But with Rebel Wolves’ pedigree and emphasis on narrative choice, the game is positioned to deliver a rich dark fantasy world when it launches potentially in 2025 or 2026.
The reveal of Dawnwalker marks just the start of a new saga for the veteran team of ex-CD Projekt Red developers now carved out on their own at Rebel Wolves. As the studio scales up over the next two years, RPG fans will be keeping an eager eye out for more on this promising debut title.
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