Microsoft Snags Gears Of War

Microsoft Snags Gears Of War
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It looks like Gears of War isn’t going to the PlayStation any time soon. Microsoft said this morning it had bought the series from Epic Games, assuring that the only console Gears will call home will continue to be Xbox.

Development of the series will continue at Black Tusk Studios of Vancouver, BC, Additionally, Rod Ferguson, the former director of production of the series at Epic, will join Microsoft “and play a key studio leadership role at Black Tusk,” Microsoft said.

This morning’s news did not mention when a new game in the series could be expected.

“Black Tusk has assembled a world-class team with deep experience and passion for the shooter space, and specifically the Gears of War franchise,” Phil Spencer, Microsoft’s head of game studios, said in a statement. “I am extremely confident that under the leadership of Hanno Lemke (of Black Tusk), Rod Fergusson and our other leaders in the studio, Black Tusk is well equipped to take on the future development of the Gears of War franchise.

Black Tusk teased an unnamed video game at E3 2013; the studio is owned by Microsoft. This makes two projects it is now working on.

In November, in an interview with Microsoft head of game studios Phil Spencer, we reported the following about the Gears of War series:

I asked Spencer what was next for Gears and if he could provide any assurances that the series would remain exclusive to Xbox. He gave a little laugh. “It’s Epic’s franchise,” he said. “You and I both know that. I can’t make any assurances about anybody else’s franchise.”

Fergusson left Epic Games in 2012 to join Irrational Games and assist the completion of BioShock Infinite but with that game finished, moved on to another project within 2K Games.

In a statement shared by Microsoft, Epic Games said:

“Epic Games has reached an agreement to sell the ‘Gears of War’ intellectual property rights to Microsoft. We’re very proud of the franchise we built in close partnership with Microsoft over the past decade and are happy that this agreement enables Microsoft to forge ahead with the ‘Gears’ universe on their industry-leading platforms as Epic concentrates its efforts on new projects,” said Epic founder and CEO Tim Sweeney. “Epic remains totally dedicated to supporting Xbox One and is licensing the Unreal Engine 4 technology to Microsoft in support of their future projects.”


  • thing is… does anyone even want another gears game? it feels kinda burnt out at this point.. i loved it but i think enough is enough… unless they revamp is some how

    • Good sale for Epic. They have flogged most of the cash out of it and now made more selling right to flog it further.

    • This, completely.I love the series, but Gears of War is a relic of last gen, and while it certainly defined what gaming became last gen… for better or for worse, current gen gaming doesn’t need a game like Gears of War. It was visually and technically amazing at the time, but they’re not going to be able to wow people like the way they did with Gears 1, and the trends it set in to motion in 2006 have become standard for any competent shooter in the last few years.

      • I dunno, there’s the ability to let it sit for a few years, then come back to it at some point with a fresh perspective. There’s a decent setup of enemies and style there as long as it’s not the same cut and paste gameplay from every sequel after part 1… mayhaps a Gears open world style game ala Fallout? I dunno, Im out of ideas, Im not THAT creative…

        • There’s shitloads of scope for more Gears games, they just have to be a bit different. Gears Of Skyrim would be pretty sweet particularly if they could keep the coop element.

          Even something as simple as not playing a frontline soldier would be refreshing, imagine a Gears game where you’re the pilots flying the transport & fire support missions for the ground troops, kind of Gears crossed with G-Police or Rogue Squadron.

          Shit, a game with the same basic mechanics as the previous games but where you play as the Locust on emergence day would be pretty damned refreshing. The humans show up on Sera, come into conflict with the indigenous population after fucking them over and experimenting on them and then try several times to commit genocide… The humans are the bad guys here.

    • Well I know some people like it but when I watched my friend play it I thought it was the most boring and repetitive shooter I have ever seen.
      I assumed its popularity was more about the lack of quality exclusives for the xbox. (Personal preference and opinion, so don’t take it personal)

      So for me at least, I have no qualms with missing out on a PS version

  • Yeah, burnt out is an understatment. Loved it when it first came out, but gee, it became as stale as the COD series.

  • And who cares. The series is dead in the water.
    I just dont see the series being the same again. It ended on a high note, and left very little room for a sequel.

    Any ideas MS can come up with for a sequal are going to sound far reached and unrealisstic.

    I want MS to keep the series. Its a series that I have never enjoyed, and have had to force myself through Gears 2 and 3, trying to understand whats special about these games.

    But is this MS’s big gaming news, cause its shows how out of touch they are with consumers. MS get excited about this news about a game that no one cares about anymore and that MS cant get people interested.
    Alot of Gears Fans made up their minds after Gears of War 3 that they dont want another Gears game. The series ending made it so.
    Gears of War Judgement showed their was no interest. The games go from selling 8 Million copies to less then 2 million. The reviews showed the same thing.

  • Black Tusk aren’t doing anything else.

    Phil Spencer told Polygon that the video shown at E3 was more of a concept piece…

    Whilst I’m glad to see more Gears; I’m kind of sorry to see the loss of what they may have been working on.
    I also wonder how many of the people at Black Tusk knew what was going on, I can’t imagine that the information was widely shared. I also can’t imagine that the people there were thrilled to find out that the project they were working on got shitcanned so they could work on Gears of War.

  • Wow, there’s some Debbie Downers in here. I’m up for some more Gears. I’ve had my fill shooting Locust though, so I’d be more enthused to see a new kind of enemy. The only worry for me is Microsoft, they got their claws into Halo and it had a very corporate taste to it so I’m concerned that MS will interfere too much.

  • Epic free with funds to develop a IP and MS with another once great franchise to run into the ground.

  • You gotta love that when they thought it was coming to WS4, the Sony kids wouldn’t shut up about it, but now it’s all “wasn’t worried about it anyway” and “waiting for UC4 instead”.
    Enjoy Killzone.

  • They did? The only time I recall Gears even being mentioned for Playstation was an April fools joke.
    Even then people pretty much had the same reaction….meh

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