Tag Archives: ensemble studios
Fri, Jan 09, 2009 | 09:25 GMT
Right, this is the last Halo Wars release date story we’re doing – well, this week, anyway.
It appears that Robbie’s Bach’s announcement that Halo Wars will ship in the US on February 28 was a mistake. The game wil ship at its original date of March 3, whilst the UK and Europe get theirs on Feb 27.
The demo, to be released on February 5, will be released in both regions, a Microsoft rep confirmed for us yesterday.
By Mike Bowden
Thu, Jan 08, 2009 | 19:12 GMT
By far the most popular piece of news to emerge from last night’s CES 09 Microsoft Keynote was that Ensemble’s 360 exclusive RTS, Halo Wars, will be released on February 28 with a demo scheduled to hit Live on on the 5th of the same month.
Microsoft told the world last year that the US would get the game in March whilst Europe could grab it on Feb 27. This new date now brings parity between the regions.
Microsoft will close Ensemble Studios post Halo Wars release.
By Mike Bowden
Tue, Sep 23, 2008 | 07:51 BST
Ensemble boss Bruce Shelley has said the studio was “shocked” at the Microsoft decision to wind the operation down after Halo Wars, saying there was an internal assumption the outfit was “immune” to closure.
“Everyone at our studio was shocked, and I think remains very disappointed that this is going to happen,” said Shelley, writing on his blog.
“I believe we thought we were immune to shut-down talk because our published games have done so well and have been so profitable. Plus we felt we had built a really stable (low-turnover), talented, hard-working, and creative team, which is not easy to do.
“We thought we were among the best studios in the world, and that may be true, but we don’t fit in the future plans of MGS as an internal studio so we’re out.”
Thu, Sep 11, 2008 | 06:28 BST
Ensemble may be cranking out Halo Wars while the carvers put the finishing touches on its tombstone, but the developer’s most-beloved RTS franchise isn’t going anywhere.
“Microsoft continues to own Age of Empires,” Xbox boss Shane Kim told Edge.
“It is not losing Age of Empires itself. We’re still super excited for the potential for the franchise. The Windows gaming world continues to evolve, and we believe in the future of that property.”
He also reaffirmed Microsoft’s support for the PC platform with a hearty “absolutely” and a promise of more first-party titles to come.
Check out the link for the rest of Kim’s musings.
Wed, Sep 10, 2008 | 12:21 BST
WildTangent boss Alex St John, speaking to GI, has claimed that Microsoft is backing down from first-party development as part of a “recovery phase” and a bid to make its games business profitable.
“You will clearly see Sony and Microsoft ramping down their investment in those platforms… What’s interesting to note is that Microsoft [Game] Studios: the number of titles they’re producing is in decline. So they’re investing a lot less in the Xbox, and Sony is doing the same, because they’re in a cost recovery phase,” he said.
St John’s comments come in the wake of the shock closure of Ensemble Studios overnight.
More through the link.
Wed, Sep 10, 2008 | 11:46 BST
Wed, Sep 10, 2008 | 11:49 BST
Update: There a copy of an email sent round to MGS staff this morning from Phil Spencer here.
Microsoft has confirmed it is to close Age of Empires developer Ensemble Studios following the completion of Halo Wars.
Shacknews originally broke the story as a rumour, but Microsoft released a statement confirming the move overnight.
And here it is:
Microsoft has decided to close Ensemble Studios following the completion of Halo Wars. After the closure, the Ensemble leadership team will form a new studio and has agreed to provide ongoing support for Halo Wars as well as work on other projects with Microsoft Game Studios.
The team at Ensemble has made invaluable contributions to the games industry with their Age of Empires and Age of Mythology games and with the highly anticipated release of Halo Wars. This decision does not reflect at all on Ensembles talent or the quality of Halo Wars. in fact, many people who have had a chance to test drive Halo Wars agree that it is on track to being a fantastic game.
This was a fiscally-rooted decision that keeps MGS on its growth path. While the decision to dissolve Ensemble was not an easy one, Microsoft is working to place as many Ensemble employees who do not move to the newly formed studio into open positions within Microsoft as possible.
As to our overall strategy at MGS, it remains the same. We are committed to growing MGS with world-class talent both internally and with our external partners around the globe. We have recently added some well-known developers to our team and will continue growing the team. Were particularly excited about the titles we have in the pipeline and continue to evaluate additional opportunities to bring incredible games to life with the industry’s best. Our investment in games has never been greater than it is today.
Well. There we are then.