After the completion of Halo Wars, Ensemble Studios is closing. Yesterday, we learned that Microsoft will gather up the majority of employees and hug them closely to its bosom in the aftermath. Questions still remain about the closure, but thanks to the comments of Kevin Unangst (director, Games for Windows) we now know that Age of Empires will survive.
Unangst told readers at GamerScoreBlog to “stay tuned” and not worry about the fate of Age of Empires after the Ensemble closing:
As many of you have heard, Ensemble Studios will be closing after Halo Wars is complete. If you’re a PC gamer, you’ve likely played some version of Age of Empires somewhere along the line. I want to reassure you that Microsoft will still own the Age of Empires intellectual property. As a company, we’re very excited about the future potential for Age of Empires, and as a PC gamer I’m looking forward to what that future holds. Stay tuned.
While I admit that Age of Mythology really blew, I remember quite fondly the days I would just sit and play Age of Empires for hours on end. The Ensemble closing reminds me of the fragility of the industry, and how quickly one’s favorite games can be buried. In this regard, I’m happy that AoE will find a new home.
What do you guys think of this news? Does Age of Empires have a bright future without all of the guys at Ensemble around?