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Red 5's Offset Engine-Powered MMO Still On, Despite  Offset  Cancelation

Red 5's Offset Engine-Powered MMO Still On, Despite Offset Cancelation

July 7, 2010 | By Chris Remo

July 7, 2010 | By Chris Remo
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Massively multiplayer developer Red 5 says is still at work on its untitled project powered by the Offset Engine, despite Intel last week announcing it had canceled the internal technology and game Project Offset.

Irvine, California-based Red 5, founded in 2005 by former Blizzard employees, has kept its debut MMO tightly under wraps, releasing no meaningful information about the game.

In early 2006, the company said it would license the Offset Engine, but noted in a statement to Gamasutra this week that the engine has been "highly modified." Chinese MMO operator The9 took a majority stake in Red 5 earlier this year.

Offset Software's origin is similar to Red 5's, the company having been founded in 2004 by former members of Savage developer S2 Games.

The team -- as well as Project Offset, a graphically ambitious first-person fantasy game -- were acquired by Intel in 2008 to showcase the chip maker's upcoming Larrabee processor. The consumer version of Larrabee itself was recently put on hold; Intel says it will focus on specialized computing uses.

"Red 5 Studios is still at work on our first title," said a Red 5 representative. "The game has not been put on hold or delayed. While we are using a highly-modified version of the Project Offset engine, the closing of the Intel team does not impact our ability to complete our own project. We look forward to releasing more information abouto ur project in the near future."

In early 2010 or late 2009, Red 5 reportedly laid off roughly 30 employees -- around half of its workforce at the time -- and came close to shutting down. Shortly thereafter, the company saw a reprieve in the form of The9's $20 million majority investment.


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