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New AAA studio BulletFarm, led by ex-Call of Duty studio director David Vonderhaar, is making a co-operative, Unreal 5-based game

David Vonderhaar's game with BulletFarm will be "set in an original universe with an emphasis on co-operative gameplay".

The BulletFarm game studio logo set above rolling American fields
Image credit: BulletFarm/NetEase Games

If you plant a bullet on a BulletFarm, do you get a full bandolier like peas in a pod? Or do you pull an ammo box out of the ground like potatoes?

At least that’s what I imagine they're doing at BulletFarm, a new game development studio helmed by former Call of Duty studio director David Vonderhaar, under the banner of publisher NetEase Games.


BulletFarm is a new "AAA" studio

Headquartered in Los Angeles, California, BulletFarm is “currently developing a new and ambitious AAA game, built in Unreal Engine 5 and set in an original universe with an emphasis on co-operative gameplay”.

Connoisseurs of unscoped sniper rifles and YouTube montages will know Vonderhaar as the multiplayer design director on Call of Duty: World at War - a brilliant CoD game that only occasionally still gives me grenade indicator-based nightmares about playing the campaign on veteran difficulty - before he moved up to become studio design direction on the Black Ops series.

BulletFarm’s first project is still yet to be announced, but Vonderhaar’s pedigree in the first-person shooter genre will surely play a role, as will his experience with one of the biggest multiplayer modes in gaming (particularly when “cooperative gameplay” has received a specific shoutout).

A stylised BulletFarm logo set inside a farm shed
Image credit: BulletFarm/NetEase Games

Also on the development team at BulletFarm is creative director Chris Cowell, who has previously worked as principal game designer and lead sound designer at Treyarch.

Given we’re just at the studio announcement stage, BulletFarm’s debut game is likely years in the future, especially when Cowell’s LinkedIn says he’s been working on the project for just 5 months.

Vonderhaar and Cowell aren’t the only ex-Call of Duty developers who have turned their talents to heading ambitious new game studios. Notably in 2023, we also saw the release of Immortals of Aveum from Ascendant Studios under EA Games. Ascendant Studios’ head, Bret Robbins, was the creative director of another Call of Duty studio, Sledgehammer Games.

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