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FASA Studios kaput

korodullinkorodullin What.Registered User regular
edited September 2007 in Games and Technology
So while looking at this week's Zero Punctuation, I noticed a little news bit that stuck out to me: FASA Studio Shuts Down.
In a post on the official Shadowrun forum, FASA's Mitch Gitelman wrote, "It is my sad duty to announce that FASA Studio has officially closed its doors. Today was the official last day of employment for those of us who had not moved on to other positions within Microsoft Game Studios." Explaining the suddenness of the announcement, he continued, "While the rumors have been circulating forever, we chose to wait on an official announcement because we didn't want people's attention distracted from our last product, Shadowrun, a game we love."

Spun off from the now-defunct FASA Corporation, creator of the popular Battletech role-playing game, and acquired by Microsoft in 1999, FASA Studio built upon that legacy by bringing the Battletech setting to videogames such as MechCommander, MechAssault and the MechWarrior 4 games. The company also developed Crimson Skies: High Road to Revenge in 2003, and most recently released Shadowrun, a multiplayer FPS for the Xbox 360 and Windows Vista, in May. Shadowrun was poorly received both critically and commercially, prompting some to speculate it may have led to FASA's closure.

"As the last of us say our goodbyes to each other, I'm saying goodbye to you on behalf of a group of talented and dedicated professionals who busted their humps for the love of the game," Gitelman wrote. "I am proud to have worked with and represented them to you and know what wherever they go, they will continue to kick ass."

While not entirely unexpected, this was certainly pretty sudden. I'm not sure whether to be saddened about the shutdown of a company I fondly remembered from ages past or indifferent towards it, since FASA was basically a shadow of its former self.

korodullin on
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Posts

  • DroolDrool Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Well I would say something about Shadowrun sucking, but I don't know from experience because I don't have Vista, and wasn't about to upgrade for CS with magic.

  • powersurgepowersurge Registered User
    edited September 2007
    Rumor is the cross platform play isn't working atm. I need to load up my game and check. I bought the PC version and NO ONE is ever playing on the pc only servers so without cross platform play its bots only.

    I guess this means we won't be seeing any new maps. Its a shame too I actually really liked it. The neat abilities easily puts it into one of my favorite online only games list.

  • Phoenix-DPhoenix-D Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    No surprise. The "studio" has been a mouldering corpse for a while now.

  • InzignaInzigna Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Mechwarrior... T.T

    camo_sig2.png
  • subediisubedii Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Inzigna wrote: »
    Mechwarrior... T.T

    T.T

  • Bobkins FlymoBobkins Flymo T̰́h͏e͞ W̵aa͠si̡tiv͢e͟ Peŗs͜pe̸c҉t̛ive̶ Registered User, Super Moderator, Moderator mod
    edited September 2007
    I was never a Mech fan, but my brother adored the series.

    "Sucks" sums it up well.

    XTljbp0.gif
  • The_ScarabThe_Scarab Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    1) Shadowrun is a good game. Those who say it sucks really havent played it. Its nowhere near as bad as people think and is a lot of fun. dont forget, its testing the water for cross platform and it does it well.

    2) About half the team from FASA are now working on, though they havent announced, a new Crimson Skies on 360. UE3 engine, team now at MGS. Yes.

    scarab you have mental problems
  • Recoil42Recoil42 Registered User
    edited September 2007
    The_Scarab wrote: »
    2) About half the team from FASA are now working on, though they havent announced, a new Crimson Skies on 360. UE3 engine, team now at MGS. Yes.

    Dude, you're going to have to back that one up somehow.

  • The_ScarabThe_Scarab Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Recoil42 wrote: »
    The_Scarab wrote: »
    2) About half the team from FASA are now working on, though they havent announced, a new Crimson Skies on 360. UE3 engine, team now at MGS. Yes.

    Dude, you're going to have to back that one up somehow.

    lead dev post on gaf saying as much, then about 50 replies saying 'is it crimson skies' and his reply 'you'll have to wait and see but ill bet you will be happy'

    obviously not verbatim but it went as much.

    edit: then there is like the last 6 months of media coverage where mitch hints at a new crimson skies, from the massive and completely awesome 1up yours podcast interview ('head is head') to the gamespot invterview to the edge print stuff, in each he is strongly hinting at a new crimson skies.

    at this point, its gonna be delayed no doubt, studio is closed loses half the team. that said, they have had people from the dev team clamoring for a chance at a new CS and it will happen.

    Believe.

    scarab you have mental problems
  • Clutch414Clutch414 Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    The_Scarab wrote: »
    1) Shadowrun is a good game. Those who say it sucks really havent played it. Its nowhere near as bad as people think and is a lot of fun. dont forget, its testing the water for cross platform and it does it well.

    2) About half the team from FASA are now working on, though they havent announced, a new Crimson Skies on 360. UE3 engine, team now at MGS. Yes.

    A new Crimson Skies would rock. I loved the version released for the oXbox. One of my aboslute favorite Live multiplayer games.

  • corin7corin7 Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    The_Scarab wrote: »
    1) Shadowrun is a good game. Those who say it sucks really havent played it. Its nowhere near as bad as people think and is a lot of fun. dont forget, its testing the water for cross platform and it does it well.

    2) About half the team from FASA are now working on, though they havent announced, a new Crimson Skies on 360. UE3 engine, team now at MGS. Yes.

    Shadowrun was totally fun to play for a few weeks. I bought it day 1, played it a ton and will not ever sell it. None of this changes the fact that it really wasn't worth the money. 8 maps and multiplayer only is not worth $60. It just isn't. Also the graphics and animation are closer to last gen than this. We really don't need to go into the fps vs rpg thing. So yeah Shadowrun wasn't a bad game but I can't imagine anyone is really surprised that Fasa is being closed.

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  • DroolDrool Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    They might have sold a few more copies and possibly created a cult following on the PC if they would have removed the Vista requirement. It doesn't use DX10 so it obviously didn't need Vista. That was a huge bullshit mistake by MS. For whats in the box I wouldn't pay full price, but I think more people might have picked it up once it came down to about $30.

  • The_ScarabThe_Scarab Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Like Luke Smith said, if it was $40 they would have sold a million. they really would.

    take a hint from warhawk. the pricing on warhawk is just right for that kind of game. shadowrun was too high.
    the game was awesome, but not $60 awesome.

    scarab you have mental problems
  • ZahaladeenZahaladeen Registered User
    edited September 2007
    korodullin wrote: »
    So while looking at this week's Zero Punctuation, I noticed a little news bit that stuck out to me: FASA Studio Shuts Down.
    In a post on the official Shadowrun forum, FASA's Mitch Gitelman wrote, "It is my sad duty to announce that FASA Studio has officially closed its doors. Today was the official last day of employment for those of us who had not moved on to other positions within Microsoft Game Studios." Explaining the suddenness of the announcement, he continued, "While the rumors have been circulating forever, we chose to wait on an official announcement because we didn't want people's attention distracted from our last product, Shadowrun, a game we love."

    Spun off from the now-defunct FASA Corporation, creator of the popular Battletech role-playing game, and acquired by Microsoft in 1999, FASA Studio built upon that legacy by bringing the Battletech setting to videogames such as MechCommander, MechAssault and the MechWarrior 4 games. The company also developed Crimson Skies: High Road to Revenge in 2003, and most recently released Shadowrun, a multiplayer FPS for the Xbox 360 and Windows Vista, in May. Shadowrun was poorly received both critically and commercially, prompting some to speculate it may have led to FASA's closure.

    "As the last of us say our goodbyes to each other, I'm saying goodbye to you on behalf of a group of talented and dedicated professionals who busted their humps for the love of the game," Gitelman wrote. "I am proud to have worked with and represented them to you and know what wherever they go, they will continue to kick ass."

    While not entirely unexpected, this was certainly pretty sudden. I'm not sure whether to be saddened about the shutdown of a company I fondly remembered from ages past or indifferent towards it, since FASA was basically a shadow of its former self.

    *sigh* I hate to see them go out of business, if for nothing else than my loyalty to the intellectual property. I played Shadowrun back in the day and loved the stories and lore that whent with it. I was fairly grumpy when they announced it would be a straight FPS with no RP function, but I got over it...for I hoped that one day they would give the fans of the source material the RPG that they deserved.

    RIP FASA <3 MechWarrior

  • BigityBigity Lubbock, TXRegistered User regular
    edited September 2007
    You rape good IP and turn it into garbage (on top of the raping part), and you get no sympathy from me from getting thrown out on your ass. Good luck on your next gem of a project.

    Crimson Skies was good, but who's making it? Did they just axe the folks not working on it and fold the rest (and the IP rights for it) into Microsoft?

    steam_sig.png
  • SpoitSpoit *twitch twitch* Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    I really feel like I should be sad or something, but sadly, FASA has been dead to be ever since they abandoned the PC to make the abomination called Mechassult.

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  • FreddyDFreddyD Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Shadowrun is now selling at $40, which is the price point it should have been released at. MS insists on price skimming, so they will get as many sales as they can at each price point.

  • ACSISACSIS Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    corin7 wrote: »
    Shadowrun was totally fun to play for a few weeks. I bought it day 1, played it a ton and will not ever sell it. None of this changes the fact that it really wasn't worth the money. 8 maps and multiplayer only is not worth $60. It just isn't. Also the graphics and animation are closer to last gen than this. We really don't need to go into the fps vs rpg thing. So yeah Shadowrun wasn't a bad game but I can't imagine anyone is really surprised that Fasa is being closed.

    The grapics are up to date - at least for the PC version. Animations... especially climbing ladders... are simply not there (wich kinda sucks). Still it opened a vast depth of gameplay to the usual CS mechanics and is truly groundbreaking (its what you call a ton of fun). Some things could have been done better, but its very well worth $60. You get a lot of game for it, even if technically sub-par executed in some respects.

    Since its shadowrun we talking here i would have loved to see more varied missions, the background practically screams for this. Usually there is a team of runners penetrating some corp security or magic circle or insect hive... whatever. Could have been so much more.

    Still the sum of the parts is more than any other compeditive online shooter around.

  • FuruFuru Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Bigity wrote: »
    You rape good IP and turn it into garbage (on top of the raping part), and you get no sympathy from me from getting thrown out on your ass. Good luck on your next gem of a project.

    Crimson Skies was good, but who's making it? Did they just axe the folks not working on it and fold the rest (and the IP rights for it) into Microsoft?

    You do realize what happened with Shadowrun was pretty much all Microsoft mandated to maximize sales, don't you?

    saiyan2.jpg
  • INeedNoSaltINeedNoSalt Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    This actually kind of makes me feel depressed.

    :\ FASA, I grew up on Mechwarrior.

    I love you forever <3<3<3

    sometimes you just gotta do a thing
  • TeeManTeeMan BrainSpoon Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Heres hoping a new studio buys the rights to the Battletech universe and makes a proper sequel to MechWarrior 2. All the sequels never came close to matching its awesomeness.

    steam_sig.png
    PSN - hellisforheroes
  • ZombiemamboZombiemambo Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Sad to see FASA go. I hope, but severely doubt, anyone will pick up the Mechwarrior IP now...

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  • Neo RasaNeo Rasa Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    MechWarrior fast simple action game
    Shadowrun online only FPS.



    With the last of FASA gone there's only one option left: Earthdawn Kart.

    "You know how Batman hangs people over the edge of buildings and gets them to spill information. That's Neo Rasa's way of it, but instead of information, he just likes to see people suffer." ~Senor Fish
  • HalberdBlueHalberdBlue Registered User
    edited September 2007
    Damn, I can remember my 8 year old self playing NetMech and MechWarrior 2 every day after school, and hanging out in Kali.

    Anybody remember Kali? I remember it had 3 huge-ass installation keys. I'm glad that that never caught on.

  • InzignaInzigna Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Sad to see FASA go. I hope, but severely doubt, anyone will pick up the Mechwarrior IP now...
    We must have hope.

    Please God, Mechwarrior 5, please.

    camo_sig2.png
  • DravalenDravalen Registered User
    edited September 2007
    The_Scarab wrote: »
    Recoil42 wrote: »
    The_Scarab wrote: »
    2) About half the team from FASA are now working on, though they havent announced, a new Crimson Skies on 360. UE3 engine, team now at MGS. Yes.

    Dude, you're going to have to back that one up somehow.

    lead dev post on gaf saying as much, then about 50 replies saying 'is it crimson skies' and his reply 'you'll have to wait and see but ill bet you will be happy'

    obviously not verbatim but it went as much.

    edit: then there is like the last 6 months of media coverage where mitch hints at a new crimson skies, from the massive and completely awesome 1up yours podcast interview ('head is head') to the gamespot invterview to the edge print stuff, in each he is strongly hinting at a new crimson skies.

    at this point, its gonna be delayed no doubt, studio is closed loses half the team. that said, they have had people from the dev team clamoring for a chance at a new CS and it will happen.

    Believe.

    Crimson skies 2(3) was canned quite a while ago, it was an internal project that never made it outside of FASA.

    I checked NeoGAF and all I saw was a mention of Airtight Games. They aren't in anyway related to Microsoft, although a good chunk of the team did work on Crimson for the XBox.

  • gilraingilrain Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    :cry:

    I'll pour one out for you FASA, buddy. See you on the other side. :cry:

  • hambonehambone Registered User
    edited September 2007
    Remember when, during the development of Shadowrun (the FPS), Mitch Gitelman and his cohorts were all like "If this game sells well and builds the franchise, who knows what kinds of Shadowrun RPG games could be made?!"

    and then after Shadowrun got nailed in the reviews he did that half hour podcast about how reviewing isn't fair and now his company is gone. Good riddance I say.

    With Bioshock, HL2, and Halo, the market has shown that people want more from an FPS than just capture the flag. The writing was on the wall the day Shadowrun was given the thumbs up for development.

    Just a bunch of intoxicated pigeons.
  • ZombiemamboZombiemambo Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    hambone wrote: »
    Remember when, during the development of Shadowrun (the FPS), Mitch Gitelman and his cohorts were all like "If this game sells well and builds the franchise, who knows what kinds of Shadowrun RPG games could be made?!"

    and then after Shadowrun got nailed in the reviews he did that half hour podcast about how reviewing isn't fair and now his company is gone. Good riddance I say.

    With Bioshock, HL2, and Halo, the market has shown that people want more from an FPS than just capture the flag. The writing was on the wall the day Shadowrun was given the thumbs up for development.

    Shadowrun isn't the only game FASA has ever made...

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  • InzignaInzigna Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Shadowrun isn't the only game FASA has ever made...
    Its the only thing FASA is being remembered for lately though.

    I guess some people just didn't live long enough to know the awesome that MW was, I'm honestly sad by this.

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  • DaedalusDaedalus Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    hambone wrote: »
    Remember when, during the development of Shadowrun (the FPS), Mitch Gitelman and his cohorts were all like "If this game sells well and builds the franchise, who knows what kinds of Shadowrun RPG games could be made?!"

    and then after Shadowrun got nailed in the reviews he did that half hour podcast about how reviewing isn't fair and now his company is gone. Good riddance I say.

    With Bioshock, HL2, and Halo, the market has shown that people want more from an FPS than just capture the flag. The writing was on the wall the day Shadowrun was given the thumbs up for development.

    Shadowrun isn't the only game FASA has ever made...

    No, but it's the latest. Kinda like how Rare made Goldeneye a while back, but lately all they've made is mediocre.

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  • HarshLanguageHarshLanguage Registered User
    edited September 2007
    I said goodbye to FASA a loooong time ago. Sorry to see the official moniker end on a low note, though.

    QSwearing_trans_smooth_small.gif
    > turn on light

    Good start to the day. Pity it's going to be the worst one of your life. The light is now on.
  • InzignaInzigna Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    Daedalus wrote: »
    No, but it's the latest. Kinda like how Rare made Goldeneye a while back, but lately all they've made is mediocre.
    I would get up to defend Viva Pinata, but you have a point that I agree with.

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  • hambonehambone Registered User
    edited September 2007
    Shadowrun isn't the only game FASA has ever made...

    You're right, I almost forgot that they killed a couple other beloved franchises too.

    Just a bunch of intoxicated pigeons.
  • ZombiemamboZombiemambo Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    hambone wrote: »
    Shadowrun isn't the only game FASA has ever made...

    You're right, I almost forgot that they killed a couple other beloved franchises too.

    Nevermind that FASA created those franchises.

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  • ShujaaShujaa Registered User
    edited September 2007
    Mechwarrior was too awesome to die like this :(

    Balefuego wrote: »
    When I play FPS games I just assume my dude is inside a tiny plane and he's sticking his arm out the window with a gun.
  • kaliyamakaliyama Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    them being sold to microsoft basically meant they would be kept from making good games, or supporting them - MW4, MC2 and Crimson Skies were the last projects that were any good, and they must be 6 or more years old.

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  • ZombiemamboZombiemambo Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    kaliyama wrote: »
    them being sold to microsoft basically meant they would be kept from making good games, or supporting them - MW4, MC2 and Crimson Skies were the last projects that were any good, and they must be 6 or more years old.

    I wouldn't go as far as to say Microsoft stopped them from making good games - they stopped them from making what they used to, which catered to the more hardcore crowd. I'm not afraid to say Microsoft effectively killed them, but I would say that's because FASA was like a fish out of water - it's like asking Rare to make the next Microsoft Flight simulator.

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  • CaspianXCaspianX Registered User
    edited September 2007
    Even if you love FASA, if Shadowrun truly was their downfall, it's hard not to think that they brought it on themselves. If this isn't a formula for destruction I don't know what is:

    1. Take an RPG franchise that fans have been screaming for a sequel to for years, then disappoint all the fans by making it not an RPG.

    2. Put the game on two platforms that, while a tad slim on good RPGs, both have tons and tons of phenomenal FPS games.

    3. Automatically lose a portion of your target audience by making a game in a genre known for top-notch graphics, and proceed to make a game that is visually "just okay".

    4. Limit the target audience by including no campaign mode whatsoever.

    5. Limit your target audience even further by making the game essentially online-only

    6. In an game that is essentially online-only, include only eight maps and a handful of gameplay modes

    7. Well, and then there's the price thing, and if you really want to blame Microsoft for that, I'd point out that it's unlikely that they wouldn't know ahead of time what the game would be priced at, especially after so many commented that the game really needed value pricing to succeed. So if they had an inkling that Microsoft wanted to position this as a full-priced product, they could have tried to ensure that it was at least released with content to match.


    Don't get me wrong, I think Shadowrun is a very inventive game that had a lot of potential, but it needed either a $40 lower price tag or 2-3 times the amount of content. That said, I am sad to see them go. I really enjoyed both the MechAssault and Crimson Skies series, and would have been delighted to see a new Shadowrun RPG. I cannot fathom what they hoped to accomplish by making a FPS to be released in the same general timeframe as Halo 3, Bioshock and The Darkness. If someone really thought the 360/PC platform needed yet another FPS, they could have delayed it into '08 to ensure it got the amount of content that would have actually given it a chance to sell.

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  • InzignaInzigna Registered User regular
    edited September 2007
    ^ What he said.

    He pretty much nailed in in my opinion.

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