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Avalanche opens New York Studio

By Matthew Handrahan

Wed 15 Jun 2011 2:49pm GMT / 10:49am EDT / 7:49am PDT

Just Cause creator establishes new studio focused on developing original IP for the next gen

Avalanche Studios has announced the opening of a new development studio in New York City.

The Just Cause developer will be forging a brand new IP at the studio, separate from work at its other offices.

"While many publishers and developers are expanding their operations in over-crowded areas such as Los Angeles, San Francisco and Seattle or relocating their staff to Canada, New York provides us with a diverse talent pool from which to create our next big console title," said co-founder and executive producer Christofer Sundberg.

Founded in Stockholm in 2003, Avalanche is principally known as the creator of the Just Cause franchise, but began to expand its operations in March last year with Expansive Worlds, a studio dedicated to online and casual games.

The New York studio will focus on the development of original AAA IP for consoles, handhelds and PC, with former Activision and Atari executive David Grijns assuming the role of managing director. Avalanche expects to hire around 50 new employees within the first two years.

"David is a great addition to Avalanche Studios and brings more than 15 years of experience in production, publishing and business development to our management team," Sundberg continued. "Most importantly, David's passion and commitment to creating groundbreaking games further enhances Avalanche's standing amongst the best development studios in the world."

The studio's debut project will be directed by Roland Listerlin, previously the creative director at Mindspark Interactive. It is targeted at the next generation of consoles, with a tentative release date of 2014.

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