We were so wrong.

Chalk this up under your rumour folder for now, but investigative gamers have all but proved that a "Sony Smash Bros" type game is in development at US developer SuperBot Entertainment.

SuperBot Entertainment describes itself as a "new independent game studio located in Culver City, California [...] comprised of long-time industry veterans and creative powerhouses who have worked on some of the most groundbreaking and successful titles the games industry has ever see".

The studio was formed as Broodworks by God Of War producer Shannon Studstill back in 2009. Its intention was to develop "medium casual" games for PSP, but when Shannon returned to take a “senior director of product development" role at SCEA, the studio was renamed SuperBot Entertainment, remaining a second-party Sony subsidiary.

The developer notes that it is currently working on a "yet-to-be announced PS3 title", with job listings revealing that is on the look-out for a senior combat designer with "a strong familiarity with fighting games and fighting game theory".

It's here that the rumour starts to get interesting. Members of the NeoGAF forum uncovered the — now deleted — Twitter account of SuperBot Entertainment's senior level designer, which included a goldmine of images pertaining to the unannounced title's development. Amongst the snaps included photographs of a Sweet Tooth character model, a crashed screen referencing Kratos, and a picture of two employees "getting their fight on" with arcade sticks.

But two Tweets in particular really reinforced the "Sony Smash Bros" rumour. One read, “Checking out the original art assets from a Sony IP title we’re appropriating for my level – very cool seeing this environment in raw form,” indicating that the studio is getting liberal access to internal assets in order to create the hypothetical crossover brawler. Another said, “New Sony Playstation commercial vaguely foreshadowing our soon to be announced title,” before linking to the multi-character heavy "Michael" commercial released recently.

The furore prompted the Paul Gale Network to go live with a metric ton of gameplay details about the game. The site — which started the rumour — noted that characters such as Parappa the Rappa, Sly Cooper, Kratos, Nathan Drake, Sweet Tooth, Colonel Radec and Fat Princess will all be represented in their original form.

"Characters look like themselves," stated the site, "Kratos is as you remember him in God of War III, Parappa is completely 2D, Fat Princess looks like her real self, Nathan Drake is similar to the build in Uncharted 3, Sly Cooper is cel-shaded, and so on.

"The development team is looking at [including approximately 20 characters] with the number looking more likely to be slightly higher. It could be less though, initially, with room for an expanded roster via DLC, but these types of things are still being considered. The developer primarily wants to have as well varied a cast as possible, made of stars from lots of PlayStation exclusive titles."

Stages themselves will be based on popular PlayStation properties such as LittleBigPlanet, with more specific references tied into the backdrops and gameplay mechanics.

“In the LittleBigPlanet stage, Buzz! pops up on screen when triggered and asks you certain trivia questions and there are different platforms that appear that you can jump on, with each having a different answer. Get the answer wrong and it’s bye-bye by pie in your eye," the website explained.

Apparently the game will share more in common with Super Smash Bros than just its concept too: "The way you pull off moves is similar to Super Smash Bros Brawl, in that you can press any of the attack buttons and do a basic move, but when pressed simultaneously with up, left/right, or down, you will pull off a more special attack."

According to the Paul Game Network the game's being tested internally right now, with SuperBot Entertainment targeting a 2012 release.

When quizzed about the project, Sony issued a firm "we do not comment on rumour or speculation" statement.

As you can imagine, this rumour is generating more than a little intrigue in the office. The idea of a totally bonkers PlayStation mascot crossover is stupidly exciting, and we'll be disappointed if it amounts to nothing.

It's probably best to temper your expectations for the time being, but the evidence is really starting to build up. As they say, there's no smoke without fire.

[source neogaf.com]