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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.
- The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse (2017, colorized)