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Pottinger on Halo MMO and Halo Wars

November 17th, 2008 by Troy Goodfellow · 1 Comment · Consoles, Ensemble, Industry, RTS

Shacknews has uploaded part one of two part interview with Ensemble Studios about Halo Wars. Today’s portion is Dave Pottinger talking about where things are at.

The headline opens with Age of Empires Dev Ensemble Speaks Out on Studio Closure which is true only in the most narrow and literal way. Pottinger says nothing that wasn’t already known or assumed. The closure of Ensemble was a surprise, was done for Microsoft’s own reasons, and Age of Empires will still remain a brand for MS. Pottinger spends most of his time on that topic talking about the dedication of his colleagues, most of whom decided to stick around and see Halo Wars out the door instead of bolting for the exits.

So this isn’t speaking out in any meaningful sense, nor could it be given the fact that he has to wake up every morning and finish Halo Wars. It’s not “no comment”, but it’s a professional statement of regret and little else.

The good news for Halo fans is that Pottinger says that the team was very keen on the Halo franchise and was excited to be working on the MMO version.

Ensemble has been wanting to make an MMO for a long time. That was in production for a long time. The Halo IP was a great IP to launch an MMO with. Microsoft… hasn’t had the best track record with those.

And we worked on it for a long time–we had staffed up an almost-40 person team. And then there was some reorganization at Microsoft, and the new bosses thought it wasn’t the best idea anymore. It had actually been green-lit, and then it got cancelled after that.

The rest of the interview will up tomorrow.


One Comment so far ↓

  • steve

    Doesn’t something have to be green-lit before it can be canceled?

    Until it’s green-lit, it technically doesn’t exist as a project that can be canceled.