Microsoft, Rare and Double Helix have done what no one could have expected – in 2013 they remade the classic Killer Instinct into a beautiful, functional arcade fighter on a modern console. Back in February of this year Double Helix, also responsible for the fantastic Strider remake that you can win right here from GamingTrend, was bought up by Amazon. This put a wrinkle in the MS Killer Instinct roadmap, as the intent was always to provide seasonal content in the form of characters, outfits, arenas, game modes and other such improvements over time.
So what’s the news? Microsoft just announced that their new partner in continuing the evolution of Killer Instinct will be Iron Galaxy Studios – according to an article at Polygon they were an original contender for the development KI, and certainly have the credentials to work on it. Most recently Iron Galaxy developed Divekick, and have had a hand in recent iterations of Street Fighter, Marvel Vs. Capcom and even Darksiders.
While we likely won’t see much in the way of announcements for the second season, we can expect an update on April 9 as Double-Helix’s final addition to Killer Instinct goes live. The new eight player Arcade Mode allows spectators, and of course Fulgore will be available for purchase (or download if you already have the season one pack).
Killer Instinct is a “free” game for Xbox One owners with Xbox Live Gold that comes with a single fighter. Additional combatants are available to purchase a-la-carte or in the season one pass. While the seasonal content is a welcome addition, it might be that what Killer Instinct really needs is an affordable, bare-bones fight-stick on store shelves as the only one rings up at $200 per stick.
Born and raised in Winnipeg, Canada, at a young age I was forced to decide whether the harsh northern winters were going to claim my fingers, or to turn to the safer pursuits of indoor activities. Little did I know that a little game called Ninja Gaiden would bring my digits more pain than frostbite ever could. Starting with Vectrex and C64 games and moving forward through the era of electronic entertainment, I sampled as much as I could in the different platforms, and began my interest in PC gaming from wrestling with DOS memory management.
While console games were a part of my earliest gaming memories and I certainly had played on most platforms including 3D0, all things Nintendo, PS1 and the like, truly the PC was my domain until the Xbox. As an old PC gamer, I ever chased the cutting edge technology. Eye of the beholder with CGA 4 colors was my first step down the the path of blowing thousands of dollars on PC upgrades over two decades. Ultima 7, with the Guardian talking to me through my monitor, still haunts my dreams and keeps me ever hoping for a decent Ultima 8 and 9. From the 3DFX SLI VooDoo2s and Aureal to today's GPU driven DirectX games, the new and shiny pictures seem to keep me going. My PC gaming has slowed down with the market shift though, and although I have choice games that will ever be on PC, I have found myself in console gaming with a bit of portable gaming in my life.
Back around the turn of the millenium (and long before fatherhood), I had fired off an email offering to help Ron with a little-known site called ConsoleGold. Little did I know it would be be a part of my life to this day. While I've seen my fair share of shovelware (thanks Ron!), I manage to try and find the fun in most games. Leaning towards sandbox and action titles, I've grown to love games for their potential to reach art. Console agnostic and excited for the progress of tomorrow, I fancy the latest and greatest, but still enjoy the good old classics ... as long as they've been revamped from their 8bit graphic roots.