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Lionhead dev launches new indie studio

Kostas Zarifis reveals Kinesthetic Games and debut title

Kostas Zarifis, former Fable programmer, has launched his indie studio Kinesthetic Games, and explained why he decided to leave Lionhead to do it.

The studio was founded in July 2011 by Zarifis, Codemasters' Alasdair Martin and fellow Lionhead veteran Anish Antony, but has just announced its first project, motion control game Kung Fu Superstar. Zarifis decided to go it alone after showing the project to Lionhead.

"It wasn't turned down per se," he told Eurogamer.

"There were various investigations about how it could be developed. Unless you've actually developed something to a level where people can clearly see what you're trying to do, then there's a lot of room for misinterpretation about what it could be and how it could be developed."

The game did have one big supporter, Peter Molyneux. He told Zarifis he loved the project.

"It propagated to quite high up but it was obvious it either wasn't going to happen at Lionhead or it would take a long time."

The game is currently being developed by a team of 15 with publishing deals under negotiation. No platform has been announced, but Zarifis' contacts make Microsoft's Kinect a fairly safe bet. And he's worked with the device in the past.

"A lot of the time you'll hear gamers or developers blaming the platforms. At Kinesthetic Games we don't believe it's a problem with the platforms," he explained.

"I was working on Fable: The Journey before I left Lionhead. Obviously I have a lot of Kinect experience. There's nothing fundamentally wrong with the device. Everything people usually complain about, latency and stuff like that... It's a phenomenal device and there's a lot it can do. Of course there's a lot it can't do. But that just comes down to clever design."

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Rachel Weber avatar
Rachel Weber: Rachel Weber has been with GamesIndustry since 2011 and specialises in news-writing and investigative journalism. She has more than five years of consumer experience, having previously worked for Future Publishing in the UK.
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