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2008 Yearbook: Microsoft Game Studios


After a solid year for the Xbox 360 in 2007 many thought the system could never showcase the same amount of quality exclusives in a single year.

In the 2008 Microsoft Game Studios Yearbook, we've compiled a list of this year's graduating class with a detailed account of each title's current status and the stories surrounding them.

From heartbreaking cancellations, surprise feature announcements and expected sequels, the 2008 MGS Yearbook is filled with fun facts and information on your soon-to-be favorite titles. Also included in the yearbook are special joke awards given to each title that releases in 2008 that poke fun at the details most commonly argued about in the comments.

From Ninja Gaiden II to Alan Wake, the 2008 Microsoft Game Studios Yearbook will have something for everyone.

Ladies and gentlemen allow us to introduce the 2008 Microsoft Game Studios graduating class ...

GDC08: Dennis Dyack is worried about GDC


During the Game Developers Conference, 1UP.com was able to record interviews with developers in the guise of their weekly 1UP Yours podcast, one such episode was with outspoken Silicon Knights boss Dennis Dyack. In the episode on February 21, Dyack outlined his worries for the future of GDC based on the marketing spin put on the, "once sacred," developer gathering.

"I worry about GDC [because] how many talks are you learning something versus when somebody is trying to sell you a product?" Dyack asked the crew made up of editors Garnett Lee, Shane Bettenhausen, Bryan Intihar and former 1UPer Mark MacDonald. "Are we calling this the Game Developers Conference [or] are we calling it the Game Demo Convention?"

Continue reading GDC08: Dennis Dyack is worried about GDC

Rumor: MS to buy Epic Games?


According to news posts on dbtechno.com and WRAL the latest issue of GamePro states that Microsoft is closing in on a deal to acquire developer Epic Games. The report states that Epic, known primarily as the developer behind Unreal Engine 3, would cost Microsoft upwards of $1 billion dollars. If true the acquisition would mean Microsoft would own Unreal Engine 3, the engine that powers most next current generation titles on the Xbox 360, PC and rival PS3 which would see Microsoft profiting from any title that makes use of the technology.

We don't want to call out shenanigans immediately but this is hard to believe for a few reasons. One billion dollars to purchase Epic Games, who also own the rights to the Gears of War universe (Microsoft owns the current characters and title) and the Unreal franchise, seems like a bargain considering the value of the Unreal Engine licenses alone. This move would also put Microsoft at the forefront of current legal problems Epic is having with Silicon Knights, who has a publishing partnership with Microsoft. Also, Epic management don't seem like the kind of folks to let this thing slide considering how well they do financially on their own. We might be wrong on this one, but until we see the GamePro issue in question, talk to Epic's Mark Rein or hear about it from Xbox boss Don Mattrick we're not willing to call this one based on the fact that Epic has a booth next to Microsoft at GDC '08. But hey, crazier things have happened right and it really could happen couldn't it?

[Thanks, Deus Legend]

UE3 devs subpoenaed in SK / Epic suit


Shacknews reports that subpoenas have been served to several Unreal Engine 3 liscensess in a lawsuit against Epic games, filed by Silicon Knights last year. The subpoenas have been served in order to acquire the liscensees' engine contracts as evidence in the upcoming trial. Specific liscensees are not named, though known liscensees include Square Enix, Ubisoft, 2K Boston/Australia, EA, and the US Army.

Mark Rein, Epic VP, stated, "I'm leaving the litigation to the lawyers but, if this is the case, I'd like to apologize to any of our licensees who Silicon Knights have inconvenienced." And inconvenienced they may be. If submitted as unsealed evidence, the contents of the contracts could become public record, allowing anyone access to the trade secrets therein. Epic's lawyers can move to seal the documents if this turns out to be the case.

The lawsuit was filed last July, with Silicon Knights claiming that Epic did not deliver final code for the Unreal Engine 3 on time, thus hampering the development of Too Human. The company further asserted that Epic purposefully sabotaged UE3 liscensees while promoting its own products such as Gears of War. Epic later filed a counterclaim and a motion to have the case dismissed. The motion was denied in November last year and both suits will come to trial.

[Via Joystiq]

Red Mile licenses Unreal Engine for Sin City

Today, Red Mile Entertainment announced that for its Sin City video game adaptation they've licensed the graphical powerhouse Unreal Engine 3 from Epic Games. Red Mile's choice of an engine is solid and we don't think anyone is willing to debate the use of the Unreal Engine 3 with Sin City. Hell, it even sounds good. Hopefully Red Mile's rather slim game development pedigree (Jackass: The Game, Heroes of the Pacific and GripShift) doesn't instantly force this "movie game" into the clearance bin, because we think Sin City lends itself to the gaming realm rather well. Here's to you Red Mile, do Sin City good, do the Unreal Engine good and don't screw this up.

[Thanks, DjDATZ]



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