Microsoft acquires game developer Twisted Pixel

Microsoft is making moves in expanding its in-house game developer studios. Today the Major Nelson web site announced that Microsoft has acquired Twisted Pixel, the Austin, Texas-based game development team best known for making smaller downloadable game titles. The company recently released its first retail game, the Kinect exclusive title The Gunstringer, which was published by Microsoft. Financial terms of the deal were not disclosed. Twisted Pixel joins other game developer studios owned by Microsoft such as Rare (makers of the Kinect Sports games) and Lionhead (creators of the Fable RPG series).

Formed in 2006, Twisted Pixel has made its reputation on making quirky downloadable games such as The Maw, Comic Jumper, Splosion Man and its sequel Ms Splosion Man. All of those games were Xbox Live Arcade exclusives with the exception of The Maw which was also released for the PC. So far there's no word on games Twisted Pixel will be making as a new Microsoft Studios game development team.

Microsoft hasn't acquired a game development studio in some time. Indeed, in the past few years Microsoft has shut down a number of its internal game teams. One was Ensemble Studios, the creators of its Age of Empires series and was later shut down in 2009. Microsoft also closed its ACES Studio that same year, which was responsible for its long running Microsoft Flight Simulator series. FASA Studios was shut down in 2007, which developed a number of games in the Mechwarrior universe.

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9 Comments

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I was P***ED off when they shut FASA. I loved Mechwarrior. It was all I eva played.
Then I hear about mech 5. And as per, nothing comes of it.

Grr

virtorio said,
Well I just hope they don't end up like Rare.

Yeah. Microsoft really needs to rethink what they do with these game studios... Whoever's in charge of that business for them isn't leveraging things like they should be.

M_Lyons10 said,

Yeah. Microsoft really needs to rethink what they do with these game studios... Whoever's in charge of that business for them isn't leveraging things like they should be.

Not neraly half as bad as EA.

tytytucke said,

Not neraly half as bad as EA.


Oh come on, nobody'll ever bother improving if THAT'S the standard we're going by.

I'm still disappointed by the game development closures Microsoft has made. I really wish they would go more for making killer first party titles...

Now if only they could buy Sega... LOL Maybe they could dig up some of their old properties...

Microsoft and Sega have had an interesting relationship as it stands. Heck, with the Dreamcast running on WinCE, it was practically Xbox Zero.

There's some potential for profit if they lined up Sega as a launch partner with games that also ran on Windows 8, but...