Microsoft is set to expand its range of game titles for its Xbox consoles, by acquiring one of the most popular third-person shooter franchises, 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," stated the official Xbox press page.
"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," mentioned the Xbox website.
With the appointment, it is also being speculated that a new game title might be already be under development at Black Tusk studios in Canada. A project by Black Tusk was recently teased by Microsoft in the company's press briefing at E3 2013, and is said to be the same title being worked upon, reports Engadget.
The proposed title is expected to get released later this year as the website quoted Hanno Lemke, general manager of Microsoft Studios stating "We hope to be able to share more news about 'Gears of War' later this year."
The Gears of War franchise was previously an Xbox 360 exclusive, which was later (only a few iterations) rolled-out for PC systems, highlighting the high-end graphics carried by Epic Game's Unreal gaming engine.
Since the franchise is a part of Microsoft now, we can hope the title may arrive in some form on the Windows Phone platform sometime in the future.