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Bungie veteran sets up new studio

Former Bungie team lead Max Hoberman has told GamesIndustry.biz that his new studio, Certain Affinity, won't necessarily develop games exclusively for Xbox and Xbox 360 - despite a close relationship with Microsoft.

Certain Affinity officially opened its doors earlier this week, announcing that its first project would be to develop multiplayer maps for Halo 2 in partnership with Bungie Studios and Microsoft Game Studios.

It's also planning to produce a title for Xbox 360, details of which have yet to be announced.

According to Hoberman, "Microsoft has been a great partner for Bungie, so Certain Affinity has every intent of building a strong relationship moving forward.

"We're also huge fans of the Xbox 360 and Xbox Live, but it's too early to say whether we'll ultimately end up exclusive to Microsoft platforms," he added.

Hoberman spent 10 years at Bungie, where he was team lead for the multiplayer sections of Halo 2 and Halo 3 - initiating and overseeing gameplay, interface and online systems.

"What we've accomplished with Halo 3 is extraordinary," he commented. "Halo 2 turned the online world on its head, but Halo 3 is going to rip its head right off."

Hoberman's new staff members have experience of working for a range of developers including Bungie, Origin and Digital Anvil, and have worked on titles such as Ultima, Myth, Ghost Recon and Asheron's Call.

A statement on the Certain Affinity website reads: "Certain Affinity's mission is to create innovative action-oriented games set in immersive worlds. Now, lots of people say things like that, so you're probably wondering what sets us apart.

"Well, there's really nothing we can say to convince you today, but we hope that when we have something ready to show you'll decide for yourself that we aren't full of sh**. In the meantime all we can really do is point to our collective experience."

Certain Affinity's new Halo 2 multiplayer maps are due for a release this spring.

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