Microsoft Hiring For a “Well-Loved Strategy Game Franchise”
A Microsoft job listing indicates that a new addition to one of its most popular game franchises is on the way, but which one could it be?
A job listing for a Principal Software Development Engineer Lead provides an awfully big hint that Microsoft is preparing to jump back into a long-standing and popular strategy game franchise. “Microsoft Studios is looking for a highly experienced senior games developer to help build and lead the team for a new AAA title within an established and well-loved strategy game franchise,” the ad states. “Your primary responsibilities will be to recruit and lead the client-side engineering team, drive technical strategy for client development, manage the day-to-day engineering rhythm, and evaluate and recommend appropriate middleware and tools to accomplish our goals.”
Qualifications include eight years of triple-A development experience, at least five of them in a leadership role, as well as expertise in “modern development techniques,” Direct3D, C++ and other related skills. “You should be comfortable working across disciplines and organizational boundaries, partnering with other groups both inside and outside the company as needed to deliver a world-class product,” the listing says.
And what’s the game? That is the big question, although it’s probably not much of a mystery at all. It might be another Halo Wars, and I suppose it’s possible that Minecraft Extreme – free-to-play, of course – is in the works, but I think the great likelihood is that a new Age of Empires title is in the offing. The last one didn’t work out quite as well as everyone had hoped and active development was halted more than a year ago, but the times, they are a-changin’, and Microsoft might feel that it has a better handle on how to approach free-to-play now than it did then – and that gamers are more open to the idea, too.
We’ll update if and when we find out what’s actually cooking; in the meantime, any other ideas?