Dishonored developer Arkane Studios is working on a complete reboot of Prey 2, claims a new report.
Kotaku cites an allegedly leaked email sent by Arkane creative director Raphael Colantonio to internal staff seemingly confirming the studio's acquisition of the project in May - when previous reports of Arkane's involvement had first emerged.
According to the report, the game has been started afresh and will be a completely separate project from the troubled Human Head title that Bethesda execs said was "not good enough".
The leaked email bills the reboot as a "spiritual successor" to System Shock 2, the action RPG released for Windows in 1999.
In response to today's report, a Bethesda rep said, "We aren't talking about what Arkane is working on and we have no new information to share on Prey 2," but such a development could signal a light at the end of a very long tunnel for the game.
It had emerged in early 2012 that the troubled sequel had been on hiatus for many months following a contract dispute between Human Head and ZeniMax Media - publisher Bethesda's parent company.
Human Head Studios narrative designer and writer Jason Blair said that the game was virtually finished and that its "limbo" status was political.
In June 2013 Bethesda explained its long silence on Prey 2 by saying the title had not met the publisher's quality standards. Bethesda's Pete Hines apologised for the lack of news and candidly expressed the company's "displeasure" at the progress Human Head made with the game, but did not acknowledge reports that the project was being rebooted by the Texan arm of Arkane.
The original Prey was released for Windows and Xbox 360 in 2006.