We cornered Sony Online Entertainment president John Smedley after his Austin GDC keynote (literally -- he was backed into a corner and could not escape us. Sorry, John!) to get some kind of status update on the PS3/PC MMO action game, The Agency. While we didn't get the firm release date we hoped for, Smedley reassured us that the game's in no danger of not coming out.

"Next year" was as closely as Smedley could approximate the release date. "Can't get -- because I've been wrong like three times with that game. And we're not going to release it until it's right. But there's this rumor going around that we're going to cancel it -- that's ridiculous."

It's worth noting that a cancellation rumor was debunked by SOE in November, but it's been ten months since then! Seems like a good time to assert once again that the game is still in development.

"No," Smedley continued, "we're going full-bore towards it. We're simply keeping it under wraps more because we want to make it the best possible game we can. I'm an FPS player first and foremost, so we're going to get that game right, period." Smedley firmly denied that the departure of staff would affect the game's development.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.