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Local studio shipping new video game for the holidays

The culture of Gainesville runs deep at Grove Street Games -- down to the name.

The studio is even named after the Grove Street neighborhood where its offices were formerly located.

The name also has ties to the Grand Theft Auto series that Grove Street Games developers have worked on for almost a decade of the studio's history.

However, their work on Grand Theft Auto: The Trilogy -- The Definitive Edition was met with criticism from the gaming media and even received a bomb threat.

Now, the developers are focused on the ARK franchise -- specifically the latest title, ARK: Survival Ascended. The release brings the first title in the series to the latest gaming systems just in time for the holiday season.

WUFT's Jacob Sedesse spoke with the company's CEO, Thomas Williamson, about its history and its latest title, as well as where he would like to take the company in the future.

In an extended cut of the interview, CEO Thomas Williamson delves deeper into the company's founding, how Gainesville's culture helps shape his studio, his past work with Trendy Entertainment, ARK's partnership with Microsoft, and more.

ARK: Survival Ascended is out now on Windows PC and Xbox Series X|S, and is coming soon to PlayStation 5. 

Jacob is a reporter for WUFT News who can be reached by calling 352-392-6397 or emailing jacobsedesse@ufl.edu. Find him on Twitter and Instagram @JACOBSEDESSE.