After an almost 30-year career at Microsoft ranging from Windows 95 programming to global marketing for Windows gaming, Kevin Unangst is taking on a new challenge at Stardock.
Unangst will join the company on December 11 as vice president, tasked with global marketing and creating partnerships for Stardock. "I've always had a passion for helping make sure innovative technology is translated into meaningful benefits for consumers," he said in a press release. "My time at Microsoft allowed me to help evangelize exciting changes that technology was bringing to the market, whether that be the power of internet integration into Windows, the transition to 32-bit protected operating systems, and more recently, the potential of DirectX 12 for PC and Xbox gaming."
Working on the games side of Microsoft and knowing DirectX 12 gave him an appreciation for what Stardock is doing, especially with the launch of their first DirectX 12 title, Ashes of the Singularity, last year.
"Stardock has long been known at Microsoft as an innovative company," Unangst said. "Even back in the 1990s - when I was marketing Windows NT - I knew of Stardock from their work with IBM OS/2 and then with their creation of the Impulse digital distribution platform. But it wasn't until I saw what they were building with the development of DirectX 12 that I realized I wanted to be a part of what they are creating."
Unangst said that Stardock's upcoming Star Control: Origins reboot will be a good showcase for the company's new Cider technology platform:
From the gamer's point of view, what they get is a story-driven space action/adventure game that exists in a huge universe that feels real - and that creates nearly infinite engagement because the player base itself will help the game's universe grow organically.
From the developer's point of view, Stardock's Cider technology allows them to build new content for the game at a fraction of the cost. This is, of course, good for consumers but it also means that the cost to continue to enhance and grow the game's user base is minimal. It greatly reduces the risk involved in the creation of new IP.
He said he also feels Stardock is well positioned to take advantage of technology advancements that are coming. "At a time when most game engines top out their CPU scaling at 4 cores, those who can take advantage of 16, 32, or 48 cores in a couple of years will have an irresistible advantage in creating multimedia content that is transformative," he said.
Stardock CEO Brad Wardell said he was excited about the new hire. "Kevin has a multi-decade track record of recognizing turning points in the technology industry and helping ensure that emerging opportunities are fully realized," he said. "We are excited to have someone of his talent and experience lead our efforts to ensure that our new endeavors reach their potential."
Neowin got a wide-ranging interview with Unangst about his career earlier today.
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Disclaimer: Neowin's relationship to Stardock.