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Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

Old 01-27-14, 08:24 AM
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Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

Great news!

For Gears of War of fans of course. For Playstation only owners not so much. I'm sure some had a little hope that the game could come to the PS4.

Hopefully they can release a new game by Holiday 2015.

I wonder if Epic Games is leaving the development, of games, arena.

http://news.xbox.com/2014/01/games-m...s-gears-of-war

Today we're excited to announce that Microsoft Studios has acquired the rights to the “Gears of War” franchise from Epic Games, including rights to all existing and future games, entertainment experiences and merchandise. In addition, we are excited to announce that Black Tusk Studios in Vancouver, BC will take over development of the “Gears of War” franchise and that Rod Fergusson, former Director of Production at Epic Games on the “Gears of War” franchise, will join Microsoft and play a key studio leadership role at Black Tusk on the development of the franchise going forward. We had a chance to chat with Phil Spencer, Head of Microsoft Studios, Hanno Lemke, General Manager of Black Tusk Studios at Microsoft Studios, and Rod Fergusson about the big news.

Why did Microsoft purchase the “Gears of War” franchise?
Phil Spencer: It all comes back to our commitment to Xbox fans. The “Gears of War” franchise has a very strong, passionate and valued fan base on Xbox. Over twenty-two million units have been sold across all “Gears of War” titles worldwide, grossing over $1B dollars (US). This franchise, and these fans, are part of the soul of Xbox. By acquiring this franchise, Microsoft Studios will continue to offer them more of their favorite games and entertainment experiences from the “Gears of War” universe.

Why did Epic Games agree to this acquisition?
Hanno Lemke: Epic has been a tremendous partner to work with, and it has been a privilege for Microsoft to be Epic’s publishing partner and work together to achieve the phenomenal success of the “Gears of War” games. Epic remains great partners and good friends of Microsoft Studios. In fact we will collaborate closely with Epic to ensure the inclusion of the Unreal Engine technology into the “Gears of War” franchise going forward remains consistent with the high quality fans have come to expect from the franchise.

Why was an as-yet-unproven studio like Black Tusk chosen to lead the “Gears of War” development over a more established studio?
Phil Spencer: Black Tusk has assembled a world-class team with deep experience and passion for the shooter space, and specifically the “Gears of War” franchise. I am extremely confident that under the leadership of Hanno Lemke, 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.

Are there plans to bring anyone who worked on previous “Gears of War” games onboard to work on the future of the series?
Hanno Lemke: The news that Rod Fergusson is joining Black Tusk should be really exciting for fans of the franchise. Rod has played a leadership role at Epic on all of the “Gears of Wars” games, he understands the franchise deeply but equally importantly he understands the fans of the franchise – what they love, where they want to see the franchise evolve. Once the news spreads about the opportunities at Black Tusk, I’m confident we’ll see interest from a number of talented developers who share the same passion for the “Gears” franchise as the developers at Black Tusk.

When can we expect to hear more about the plans for the “Gears of War” franchise?
Hanno Lemke: We hope to be able to share more news about “Gears of War” later this year.

You’re moving back to Canada and back to working on the “Gears” franchise. Is it like a homecoming for you?
Rod Fergusson: I’m extremely excited to be joining Black Tusk Studios to oversee development on the “Gears of War” franchise. I’ve been privileged to work on a lot of great games with a lot of great teams, but “Gears” has had the most impact on me professionally and personally, so this really feels like a homecoming. I can’t wait to share more with you all soon.

Finally, Epic games shared the following statement on the acquisition:
“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.”
Old 01-27-14, 08:49 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

Originally Posted by Raul3 View Post
Great news!

For Gears of War of fans of course. For Playstation only owners not so much. I'm sure some had a little hope that the game could come to the PS4.

Hopefully they can release a new game by Holiday 2015.

I wonder if Epic Games is leaving the development, of games, arena.

http://news.xbox.com/2014/01/games-m...s-gears-of-war
That should say "Great news! For Xbox fans of course." It isn't great news for Gears of War fans that switched to the PS4
Old 01-27-14, 08:52 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

Hopefully it doesn't suck. Gears of WarJjudgement was terrible when compared to gears 3...
Old 01-27-14, 09:03 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

I wouldn't quite write off any style of Gears for the PS4 quite yet. While the Gears of War name might be under Microsoft...Cliffy B is not along with some former high level Epic employees. Besides...with games like Destiny, The Division and a few others (Titanfall) any Gears will be a ways off.
Old 01-27-14, 09:56 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

I don't think anybody expected Gears to show up on the PlayStation regardless. Maybe they'll be a next-gen version of Epic's "Kick you in the Dick" game that PS4 owners can enjoy.
Old 01-27-14, 10:01 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

I sort of thought that MS already owned the rights to the franchise but not the studio that made the game, in the same as they own Halo but not Bungie or how Sony owns Ratchet & Clank but not Insomniac.
Old 01-27-14, 10:04 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

I'm curious how they're going to move on from a story perspective. They wrapped up the original story in 3 and did the prequel thing with Judgment. I suppose it could be interesting to have an all-new type of alien threat to Sera many years later instead of just rehashing the Locusts again.
Old 01-27-14, 10:19 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

Sounds good to me. I wonder what Epic is even working on.
Old 01-27-14, 10:27 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

After how disappointing GOW Judgement was last year, this doesn't surprise me. People were jumping ship left and right over at Epic and the Gears franchise seems tired and hasn't really brought anything new to the table over the last couple games. The first game is still one of my favorites on the 360. I also think that Judgement was the only 360 retail exclusive that came out last year, so Microsoft probably needed to make sure this franchise moved forward, even if Epic wanted to take a break. Oh well, maybe the next game will reinvent the third person cover based shooter genre again but I'm not holding my breath.
Old 01-27-14, 11:11 AM
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I haven't been able to finish Judgement

Gears 3 was awesome! Brothers to the end brah!

XP from the X1 thread, but I would like this team to remake Gears 1 for the X1. So they can test the waters and get the feeling of the game. They can be creative with the MP side.

So Gears 1 remake in 2014 and new game in 2016, please?
Old 01-27-14, 11:53 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

Gears 1 was the game I bought a 360 to play.

Sadly, I didn't like it at all. I found the characters and setting unappealing and the gameplay monotonous. It was basically RE4, but you played as an asshole fighting against generic enemies.

Still good to see MS keeping the franchise. It shows some commitment to first party.
Old 01-27-14, 12:35 PM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

Originally Posted by Decker View Post
I sort of thought that MS already owned the rights to the franchise but not the studio that made the game, in the same as they own Halo but not Bungie or how Sony owns Ratchet & Clank but not Insomniac.
That was my impression as well.
Old 01-27-14, 03:33 PM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

I never played any of the Gears games. I'd give a next-gen version a chance, though.
Old 01-27-14, 03:56 PM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

Cliff Bleszinski Addresses Gears of War Buyout, Not Involved in Development
Co-creator isn't consulting, but is confident in the new team.

Ex-Epic Games director Cliff Bleszinski has shared his thoughts on Microsoft's acquisition of Gears of War. "I don’t think the franchise could be in better hands," he stated on his blog. "Gears is just as much Rod’s baby as it was mine. He’ll take good care of her."

Bleszinski will not be involved in the new Gears of War, whatever it is, in any capacity. "I’m not going to move to Vancouver and work on it. I’m not going to consult on it," he emphasized. "My headspace is in the future now, not the past." Bleszinski has been teasing his upcoming game (and sharing shooter philosophies) since leaving Epic Games in 2012.

Bleszinski added, "343 knocked it out of the park with Halo and I think Black Tusk will do a fantastic job with Gears," which, he notes, "puts the nail in the coffin of the question 'Will Gears ever come to PlayStation?'"


http://www.ign.com/articles/2014/01/...in-development
Old 01-27-14, 04:02 PM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

Originally Posted by chess View Post
Gears 1 was the game I bought a 360 to play.

Sadly, I didn't like it at all. I found the characters and setting unappealing and the gameplay monotonous. It was basically RE4, but you played as an asshole fighting against generic enemies.

Still good to see MS keeping the franchise. It shows some commitment to first party.
I bought a 360 for Gears 1 (& Dead Rising) and it completely lived up to the hype for me, primarily due to the online co-op. Being able to play through a campaign online with a friend was a completely new experience and blew me away at the time. For a couple years, that was my favorite aspect of the past generation. Unfortunately, it's gotten harder and harder to align schedules with friends and I play almost no co-op at all anymore.

Anyway, I played through the first two Gears and most of the third. Picked up Judgment cheap around the holidays, but haven't put it in yet. I don't see the franchise being a push for me to add an Xbone to my PS4 / WiiU combo, though I suppose they could surprise me.
Old 01-28-14, 01:14 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

Yeah, Gears 1 pretty much sold me on the XBox at the time and lived up to the hype for me. Loved the first 3, although 3 was the weakest and i never bothered to play Judgment. Maybe something i'll get and play before getting rid of the 360.
Old 01-28-14, 01:29 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

Gears 1 was the reason to buy a 360. Even during the system launch they were advertising Gears as coming soon, and used it to really show off the graphical capabilities of the system. I think the game lived up to the hype, personally, and I loved both the online co-op and vs. multiplayer, which is something I say about very few games. It helped that even in vs. the group was small. I never got the draw of multiplayer with 20, 50, 100 people.

That being said, I have at least the second, if not the third Gears games, and have played only a few hours of the second. For whatever reason, the sequels didn't hold my interest. I didn't even know there was a prequel. This is not a series I will miss.
Old 01-28-14, 05:26 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

Originally Posted by fumanstan View Post
Yeah, Gears 1 pretty much sold me on the XBox at the time and lived up to the hype for me. Loved the first 3, although 3 was the weakest and i never bothered to play Judgment. Maybe something i'll get and play before getting rid of the 360.
Don't bother. Keep those happy memories!
Old 01-28-14, 06:41 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

Originally Posted by fumanstan View Post
Yeah, Gears 1 pretty much sold me on the XBox at the time and lived up to the hype for me. Loved the first 3, although 3 was the weakest and i never bothered to play Judgment. Maybe something i'll get and play before getting rid of the 360.
3 had the best horde mode!
Old 01-28-14, 11:38 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

My friends talked me into 3 just for Horde mode. It was indeed awesome. Probably the best part of any of the 3 main games. The campaigns were decent but its not a franchise that needs more sequels, IMO. With MS at the helm I'd imagine this will be a yearly series. Its only a matter of time.
Old 01-28-14, 11:57 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

I actually did enjoy horde mode in 3. But I do really like the single player campaign in these games, and the story.

Originally Posted by Michael Corvin View Post
With MS at the helm I'd imagine this will be a yearly series. Its only a matter of time.
If they haven't done it with Halo, can't see why they would do it with Gears.
Old 01-28-14, 12:12 PM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

Originally Posted by fumanstan View Post
I actually did enjoy horde mode in 3. But I do really like the single player campaign in these games, and the story.



If they haven't done it with Halo, can't see why they would do it with Gears.
Yeah, you should stay away from judgement as the campaign was awful. The lack of horde mode didn't help either.

The only bad part about skipping out on judgement is that you will miss out on the aftermath campaign which ties into the gears 3 story. It was the best part of the entire game.
Old 01-28-14, 12:25 PM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

I enjoyed all 4 games. You guys are being to hard on Judgement. It wasn't that bad. Not the best of the series but still worth playing.
Old 01-28-14, 01:43 PM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

I owned the first three Gears games, I felt some fatigue in the series after a few months with the second and only played the third a handful of hours. Skipped Judgement. Best implementation of co-op in a modern shooter that I've seen.
Old 01-29-14, 07:00 AM
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Re: Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise

Originally Posted by fumanstan View Post
If they haven't done it with Halo, can't see why they would do it with Gears.
Where have you been?

2007 - Halo 3
2009 - Halo Wars
2009 - Halo: ODST
2010 - Halo Reach
2011 - Halo Anniversary
2012 - Halo 4
2013 - Halo Spartan Assault

I'm sure a Halo 2: Anniversary is around the corner along with Halo 5. That should cover 2014 & 2015.

Last edited by Michael Corvin; 01-29-14 at 07:05 AM.

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