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Jagex confirms publishing plans

First third-party title is free-to-play strategy game War of Legends

Jagex, developer of the browser-based MMO RuneScape, is to publish its first third-party game - a free-to-play title called War of Legends.

Launching across Western territories today, the title - from Shanghai-based studio Ultizen - is an MMO real-time strategy title, based around Chinese mythology.

Like Jagex's current titles - RuneScape and games playable through its FunOrb portal - the game is browser-based but, unlike those titles, will incorporate micro-transactions.

Jagex CEO has previously told GamesIndustry.biz of the company's hopes to move into publishing third party games.

"We've only ever published our own titles and I think we'll start to look at working with other people similar to ourselves - more indie gamer studios - to get more titles out there. I think we can relate to them. It's where we started," he said.

The company - which has a team of over 400 based in Cambridge - has nine years' experience and tools developed specifically for online game publishing that will be invaluable to studios started out, said the company.

"When we started to develop games in 2001 we were forced to self-publish as none of the 'traditional publishers' seemed interested in or even understood online game publishing. Nearly a decade and a great deal of success later, we want to leverage our experience and global reach to help other talented young developers bring their games to life," said Gerhard, upon today's announcement.

"We were approached by the War of Legends development team last year; we played the game and loved it. We believe our players will feel the same way, so it's only natural to add it to our growing catalogue of games on Jagex.com. We are actively recruiting to help scale up our publishing division throughout 2010, and are confident that War of Legends will be the first of many great third-party games to be published by Jagex."

Jagex confirmed it had cancelled development on its upcoming RuneScape follow-up MechScape last year after the game didn't turn out as well as it had hoped. Development was switched to a title named StellarDawn - a release date for which is still to be announced.

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