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Last lap for Microprose UK studio

It would seem that old labels do die, after all

Dark blue icons of video game controllers on a light blue background
Image credit: Eurogamer

The only remaining Microprose development studio in the UK, which most recently created Geoff Crammond's Grand Prix 4, is being shut down by owners Infogrames - with the doors shutting on the studio for the last time this Friday, September 20. The closure of the development house, which employs 27 people, poses serious questions about the future of Geoff Crammond's Grand Prix 4 on the Xbox, which has been delayed heavily despite the release of the game on the PC some time ago. We have so far been unable to reach anybody at Infogrames for comment, but sources suggest that the Xbox version of the game may now have been cancelled entirely. What this almost certainly represents is the death of the Microprose label, which was purchased by Infogrames as part of its acquisition of Hasbro properties. Although several leading-edge PC games from the publisher appeared under the Microprose label, the newly-revived Atari label now covers that area of the market, and it seems likely that Grand Prix 4 will have been the last game ever to carry the Microprose logo. Now the only remaining studio from the old publisher is based in Hunt Valley, Maryland in the USA. Interestingly, Infogrames today announced the creation of a new Formula One racing title and potential franchise on the PS2, entitled Grand Prix Challenge. The game will be developed at Infogrames Melbourne House, which was previously responsible for, er, Looney Tunes: Space Race. Is this just a pit stop for the much-loved Geoff Crammond franchise, or has it spun out of the race entirely?

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