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Brier Dudley's blog

Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

March 3, 2010 at 9:55 AM

Gas Powered launches “Supreme Commander 2”

Redmond’s Gas Powered Games today launched “Supreme Commander 2,” a new version of its hit real-time strategy game for the PC.

Players command and customize massive land, sea and air battles with hundreds of individual units, plus 27 “experimental” battle machines.

Gas Powered’s also releasing a version for the Xbox 360 on March 16, the first time the company has developed a console version of the game in-house.

Real-time strategy games are a niche market but they’ve been a profitable one for Gas Powered, especially as other game companies have shifted their focus to broader markets.

“A lot of people have walked away from this market and we see it being wide open now,” said founder Chris Taylor (pictured).

Chris Taylor.JPG

The “Supreme Commander” franchise has sold 1.5 million copies, including around 800,000 when the last version was released in 2007. Taylor’s hoping “Supreme Commander 2” will sell at least a million copies.

Gas Powered recently employed around 55 people but Taylor’s expecting to let 10 to 12 go after the game’s released, as work slows between releases.

“It’s nothing like Hollywood but there are some similarities – you build a production team, you make a movie and then you disband,” he said.

Fortunately Gas Powered already got another huge project in the works. Taylor revealed last month that the company’s using its RTS technology to build a new franchise called “Kings and Castles” with kings vying for control of a medieval fantasy world.

Meanwhile Japanese publisher Square Enix is releasing “Supreme Commander 2,” which retails for $49.99 and is rated E10 for players 10 or older.

A few screenshots:

GPG_Supreme_Commander_2_Gameday_03.JPG

GPG_Supreme_Commander_2_Gameday_05.JPG

Here’s a Gas Powered video of Taylor introducing team members now working on “Kings and Castles”:

Comments | Topics: Games & entertainment, gas powered games, Microsoft

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