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BreakAway to open new Austin studio

Developer BreakAway Ltd, which has developed a wide range of largely strategy-focused titles, has announced that it is to open a new development studio in Austin, Texas.

The decision to expand is based on the significant growth that the company has seen in recent months, with revenues so far this year up by around 50 per cent and headcount up by 20 in the last six months.

The founding of the new Austin studio comes only weeks after Acclaim, which operated a significant development presence in the area, went bankrupt. Publisher Midway Games also recently announced that it is to open an Austin development office.

"Austin is nationally known as a creative community and hotbed for gaming talent," according to BreakAway CEO and founder Doug Whatley. "Given the current demand for our services and our rapid expansion, it simply makes sense for us to open a studio where the kind of experienced personnel we need are readily available."

The new studio will be headed up by development veteran Mike McShaffry, who moves to BreakAway from Ion Storm, where he worked on Thief: Deadly Shadows. Prior to that, McShaffry worked on titles for Origin Systems including the Ultima series from VII through to Online, and co-founded developer Compulsive Entertainment.

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Rob Fahey: Rob Fahey is a former editor of who spent several years living in Japan and probably still has a mint condition Dreamcast Samba de Amigo set.