Crytek UK Limited

Moby ID: 1961

  • Free Radical Design Ltd. (from 1999-01-27 to 2009-02-04)
  • Geveret Ltd. (from 1998-10-29 to 1999-01-27)

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Crytek UK was a development studio of Crytek GmbH and it was based in Nottingham, UK.

The company was initially founded as Free Radical Design. After leaving developer Rare in February 1999, former GoldenEye 007 and Perfect Dark team members David Doak, Steve Ellis, Karl Hilton and Graeme Norgate began trading as independent development studio Free Radical Design a mere two months later in April 1999. The company was based in Sandiacre, Nottingham, England.

With a team of only eighteen, Free Radical shipped and delivered the first-person shooter TimeSplitters to Eidos for the PS2 launch in October 2000.

Over the years Free Radical Design received numerous awards and nominations including CTW Developer of the Year 2001, the Develop Industry Excellence award for Best Independent Development Studio in 2003, along with five BAFTA nominations for TimeSplitters 2 in 2004, and two BAFTA nominations for Second Sight in 2005. Furthermore, they were listed in the Sunday Times Tech Track 100 as one of the UK's fastest growing technology companies.

The studio only developed first person shooter games. After the TimeSplitters series and Second Sight, the studio's final game was Haze (2008), which received mediocre to negative reviews. On 18 December 2008, the studio was reported closed, after the development of the next game for LucasArts, Star Wars: Battlefront III, did not go through. There was also no publisher announced for TimeSplitters 4 and it was reported that two of the founders, Dave Doak and Steve Ellis, had already left the company earlier that month and established the studio Pumpkin Beach.

On 31 December 2008, an administrator announced the studio had not been closed entirely (140 employees had been let go), but that about 40 people had been kept on board to work on a new game concept. It paid off, as on 3 February 2009, Rob Yescombe confirmed the studio had been acquired by Crytek. It was consequently renamed Crytek UK. As a part of Crytek it focused on multiplayer and console development. The first title the UK studio was involved with for Crytek was Crysis 2 (2011).

In January 2013, Crytek bought the Homefront IP following publisher THQ's bankruptcy for $500,000. In June 2014, the title Homefront: The Revolution was revealed, in development at Crytek UK, with a tentative release date for 2015. On 30 July 2014, however, it was confirmed Koch Media (via the Deep Silver label) bought the entire Homefront IP from Crytek. At the same time the new Deep Silver Dambuster Studios was established and in accordance with UK law all Crytek UK staff moved along to the new studio, ending the UK Crytek presence.

A relaunch of Free Radical Design proper was started by Embracer Group in May 2021 to work on the TimeSplitters series, but was closed by 11 December 2023.

Credited on 7 Games from 2000 to 2013

Crysis 3 (2013 on Windows, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3)
Crysis 2 (2011 on Windows, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3)
Haze (2008 on PlayStation 3)
TimeSplitters: Future Perfect (2005 on PlayStation 2, Xbox, GameCube...)
Second Sight (2004 on Windows, PlayStation 2, Xbox...)
TimeSplitters 2 (2002 on PlayStation 2, Xbox, GameCube...)
TimeSplitters (2000 on PlayStation 2)

History +

July 30, 2014

Deep Silver parent company Koch Media bought the Homefront intellectual property from Crytek and re-purposed Homefront: The Revolution developer Crytek UK into Deep Silver Dambuster Studios.

February 3, 2009

It is confirmed Cytek GmbH has acquired the company.

December 18, 2008

The company is closed.


Company founded in Nottingham, UK.

Trivia +

The five developers who started the company (including David Doak, Graeme Norgate and Lee Ray) moved away from Rare, Ltd. and Nintendo because they felt Goldeneye and Perfect Dark were at their peak.

They wanted to work in an independent studio with the freedom to choose a publisher for each game, hence the word Free. That seems to have worked out, as Timesplitters 3 is published by Electronic Arts and Second Sight by Codemasters.

The word Radical refers to their constant striving for originality. Nothing by the book, always refreshing.

The Free Radical Design company website was

Related Web Sites +


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