Blizzard goes Ape

by: John -
Blizzard has acquired Swingin' Ape Studios, a console developer. With StarCraft: Ghost delayed for what seems to be forever now, let's hope these guys can finish the job and get the game out.
Blizzard Entertainment Acquires Swingin' Ape Studios

IRVINE, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 16, 2005--Blizzard Entertainment(R) today announced that it has completed the acquisition of acclaimed console developer Swingin' Ape Studios. Widely regarded as an innovative and accomplished development studio, the Swingin' Ape team boasts some of the industry's most talented developers, with more than 50 games' worth of collective design and development experience across all major platforms.

Under the agreement, Blizzard will retain Swingin' Ape's team of more than 40 developers, as well as acquire the studio's proprietary development technologies. The financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

"The acquisition of Swingin' Ape Studios takes us one step closer to realizing our goal of becoming a top-tier console developer," stated Mike Morhaime, president and co-founder of Blizzard Entertainment. "With Swingin' Ape's talented designers, programmers, and artists, we're confident we'll be able to create console games that meet the quality standards we've established for every Blizzard title."

As part of Blizzard Entertainment, Swingin' Ape Studios will establish the foundation for Blizzard's new console team and will continue development on "StarCraft: Ghost(TM)" in that role. Plans for future console games will be announced at a later date.

Steve Ranck, president and co-founder of Swingin' Ape Studios, expressed the team's excitement at joining the Blizzard family. "We've long admired the quality and attention to detail that Blizzard puts into each of its PC titles," said Ranck. "Our approach to game design is very similar, so we expect this to be a seamless transition for us."

Ranck will assume the title of vice president of console development for Blizzard's new console team and will report directly to Mike Morhaime. The team will remain in its Southern California office, located within a few miles of Blizzard's Irvine headquarters.
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