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Posts tagged ‘New Studios’


“FuzzyCube” – Another ex Ensemble development house – Releases a game!


Yup! That’s right folks yet another development house has risen from the ashes of Ensemble Studios. This is the second development house which is confirmed to be working on iPhone games (the first being NewToy). The company has just released thier first game titled “iQuaterback” and is available to download via the App Store right now! If you have an ipod it may well be worth checking out!

It would seem alot of Ex Ensemble employees enjoy iPhone development – lets hope Apple culture inside Ensemble didnt affect their Microsoft shut down!

The FuzzyCube website can be found here: and they are starting to create forums here:

It looks like the developer is already showing Ensemble like success as already 1 million footballs have been thrown. More details on this title as more statistics arrive.

Good luck FuzzyCube!


Senior Ensemble programmer Dusty Monk launches new studio “Windstorm Studios”


Dusty Monk is the president and founder of another game studio to arise from Ensemble’s ashes.  Dusty has great passion for online MMO games and worked closely with Ensemble’s Halo MMO. It is currently unknown whether Windstorm will be developing an MMO or something else all together.

You can find the studios launch site here:

As Dusty says on the website:

“For pretty much my entire life I’ve played in and worked on virtual worlds. From Islands of Kesmai on the Compuserve Information Service, to Ultima Online, to Everquest, to World of Warcraft, since I was a teenager I’ve possessed a passion for playing and participating in these realms, and dozens more. In 2008, when Microsoft closed my then employer Ensemble Studios, I saw an opportunity for something new – not just for myself, but for the genre which I love so much. Windstorm Studios is the realization of that opportunity. I bring with me close to fifteen years of professional game development experience, and have contributed to some of the best triple-A titles in the business. Furthermore, I bring a wealth of firsthand knowledge of how a top notch studio is run and maintained – taken from my tenure at one of the most respected game development houses in the industry, Ensemble Studios.”


Bonfire Studios are the 2nd studio to form out of Ensemble


Bonfire Studios is the second studio to form out of Ensemble Studios. This studio is headed up by David Rippy and the studio is formed soley of Ensemble staff. David Rippy had this to say:

“Ensemble had an incredible group of highly talented people and the companies coming out of it are really made up of the best of the best. Ensemble was one of the few studios with two A-teams,” said David Rippy, president and CEO of Bonfire Studios. “We are already working on an original IP that we’ll start talking about in the next few months.”

Another great studio to keep an eye on! It is exciting to hear that we will be seeing new IP from both studios all full of Ensemble people. That’s fantastic. Its great to see they are all landing on their feet.

The Bonfire Studios website is fully online at: which I encourage everyone to check out!


********** Question and Answers!! ****************

Ive been getting messges asking about the relationship between Robot and Bonfire and why there are two studios. Please see this rushed explanation below! I shall hope to get more info soon!

As Bruce Shelley confirmed there are two separate studios forming from Ensemble.

1.  Robot Entertainment headed up by Tony Goodman the ex Ensemble founder. Robot will be supporting Halo Wars and Age whilst also making a new game. Unfortunately not all employees from ES could go to Robot as there was not enough resources available to employ them all

2. Bonfire Studios is where the remaining talent from ES has landed. They will be making a new game that’s “too hot to handle”. This studio is lead by David Rippy who was also a prominent Ensemble member.


Robot Entertainment: Press Release

Robot Entertainment has updated its website with a press release which can be found below:

Founders of Ensemble Studios Announce Formation of Robot Entertainment

PLANO, Texas – February 17, 2009 – Robot Entertainment announced today the formation of its new game development studio in Plano, Texas. Founded by many of the original founders of Ensemble Studios, Robot has a staff of 45 comprised entirely of former Ensemble employees. Robot’s team developed the hit franchise Age of Empires™, selling over 20 million units worldwide, and the soon-to-be released Halo Wars for Xbox 360™. Tony Goodman, the founder of Ensemble, is the CEO of Robot.

“The video game industry is in a state of upheaval,” said Mr. Goodman, “not just games, but the entire landscape. Everything is changing: where we buy games, how we buy games, how much we pay, how long we play, who we play them with. As a fast-moving independent team of game developers, industry leaders and market experts, Robot Entertainment is ideally positioned to play a transformative role in the industry’s future.”

Robot Entertainment is working with Microsoft Game Studios to develop additional content for Halo Wars and support online gaming and community for both Age of Empires and Halo Wars. Additionally, Robot is developing its own original IP.

About Robot Entertainment
Based in Plano, Texas, Robot Entertainment is a world-class independent game development studio owned and operated by many of the founders of Ensemble Studios. With a team that has proven experience and expertise in creating games that appeal to massive audiences, Robot Entertainment is focused on titles that set new standards for their respective genres as well as groundbreaking original IPs. Robot can be found on the web at

# # #

contact .@.


Robot is making its own IP; 45 ex Ensemble veterans on board


GamePlasma reports that 45 members of staff have been recruited from Ensemble Studios to form Robot Entertainment and Tony Goodman is quoted as saying:

“The video game industry is in a state of upheaval,” said Mr. Goodman, “not just games, but the entire landscape. Everything is changing:  where we buy games, how we buy games, how much we pay, how long we play, who we play them with. As a fast-moving independent team of game developers, industry leaders and market experts, Robot Entertainment is ideally positioned to play a transformative role in the industry’s future.”

The article goes on to mention that Robot is the studio which will provide support for Halo Wars and Age of Empires. However the studio will be working on new IP which may rule out Age of Empires 4 (for the moment).

It may be possible that the studio is exploring some old prototype ideas discussed here: . Or it could be a whole new project.

We look forward to finding out more.


Tony Goodman: “Stay Tuned. We have some big ideas”


Robot Entertainment’s website is now live at with a message from Tony Goodman  “Stay tuned, we have some big ideas”

We are very excited to hear about the new studio and wish them the best of luck. Stay tuned for more updates about “Robot”.


Tony Goodman forms “Robot Entertainment” from Ensemble.


Gamasutra have reported that the new studio formed by Tony Goodman will be called “Robot Entertainment”.

There is no indication of what projects this new studio will be working on though. Keep an eye out for more news on Robot Entertainment as it is reported.

I encourage everyone to read the latest Gamasutra article here:

I hope the new studio is able to get on its feet and get started on some exciting projects soon. Good luck!


Part 2 of Bruce’s blog restored & new studios update


You can now find the images restored to part 2 of Bruce’s blog archive:

The rest will be restored soon.

Update on new studios:

There has been no news as of yet for a name for the new studios and nor do they have a website setup. I can confirm however that Ensemble people are indeed managing the ESO servers which run Age of Empires 3 and Age of Mythology. My ears are to the ground and will update this site as news develops.


Two new companies to form out of Ensemble


Bruce Shelley confirmed in his blog that there will be two new companies forming out of Ensemble employees. One of those studios will be providing support for ESO (Ensemble Online) and Halo Wars and it is presumed that this studio will be run by Ensemble head Tony Goodman though this has not been confirmed. It is completely unknown as to who may be leading the other company. One might ask why Tony Goodman’s new studio is not employing all of Ensemble’s staff. This is because the new studio will not have enough resources and size to employ everyone unfortunately. However as both studios gain momentum there is nothing to stop a partnership in the future.

Strangely enough Microsoft have announced that they want to have a relationship with the “new” Ensemble and that there is very good possibility of games being created under the Microsoft Games Studio banner. There has been no news yet as to what projects the studio will be working on but AOE4 and Halo Wars 2 are possibilities.

Ensemble visionary Bruce Shelley will not be joining either company, sadly. Stay tuned for updates on these new companies.

Below are some links to recent news articles about Ensemble Studios:

Ensemble staff to form two new studios   Former employees will continue work on popular titles through new entities  – GamesIndustry.Biz

Ensemble involved in Halo Wars’ future

Microsoft Game Studios “very excited” about series potential –

Bruce Shelley Shares His Thoughts on Ensemble Studios Shutting Down –  Softpedia