The Coalition (company)

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The Coalition
Subsidiary of Microsoft Studios
Industry Computer and video games
Interactive entertainment
Founded 2010
Headquarters Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Key people
Rod Fergusson (studio head)
Products Gears of War series (2015–)
Owner Microsoft
Number of employees
200 (2015)[1]
Parent Microsoft Studios
Website Official website

The Coalition, formerly known as Microsoft Vancouver and Black Tusk Studios, is a Canadian video game developer based in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada owned by Microsoft.[2]


Formed in 2010 as Microsoft Vancouver, the studio was working on Microsoft Flight and a Kinect game.[3] Microsoft closed the studio on July 25, 2012, laying off all 35 members of its staff.[4] The studio re-opened on November 29, 2012 as Black Tusk Studios, and was tasked with creating a major franchise for Microsoft to rival their popular Halo franchise.[5]

On January 27, 2014, it was announced that Microsoft had acquired the Gears of War franchise from Epic Games and that Black Tusk Studios would be tasked with developing future games in the series.[6][7] As part of the Gears of War acquisition, Microsoft also hired Rod Fergusson, who was the executive producer on the first three Gears of War games at Epic, to oversee development.[8] On June 3, 2015, Fergusson announced that Black Tusk Studios had been renamed The Coalition; it signifies its role as the studio for the Gears of War franchise by serving as a reference to the Coalition of Ordered Governments, an in-game faction.[9]

Games developed[edit]

Year Game Platform(s) GameRankings Metacritic
2015 Gears of War: Ultimate Edition Xbox One, Microsoft Windows 83.94%[10] 82/100[11]
2016 Gears of War 4 Xbox One, Microsoft Windows TBA TBA


  1. ^ Gies, Arthur (July 28, 2015). "Beauty Reconstructed: The State of Gears of War". Polygon. Vox Media. Retrieved July 29, 2015. 
  2. ^ Shaw, Gillian (November 29, 2012). "Microsoft opens new video game studio in Vancouver". Vancouver Sun. Retrieved January 16, 2013. 
  3. ^ Lien, Tracey (January 28, 2014). "The mystery of Black Tusk's 'next big entertainment franchise'". Polygon. Vox Media. Retrieved January 28, 2014. 
  4. ^ Lien, Tracy (July 25, 2012). "Microsoft cancels 'Microsoft Flight', lays off Vancouver staff". Polygon. Retrieved February 25, 2016. 
  5. ^ Hafer, T.J. (November 30, 2012). "Microsoft’s new Black Tusk Studios, headed by ex-EA devs, looking to make the next Halo". PC Gamer. Retrieved January 16, 2013. 
  6. ^ "Microsoft Studios acquires rights to Gears of War franchise" (Press release). Microsoft. January 27, 2014. Retrieved January 27, 2014. 
  7. ^ McWhertor, Michael (January 27, 2014). "Microsoft acquires Gears of War from Epic, hires series producer Rod Fergusson". Polygon. Retrieved January 27, 2014. 
  8. ^ Hicks, Jon (September 13, 2014). "Epic streak: Rod Fergusson on bringing Gears of War to Xbox One. Series veteran talks Black Tusk, Bioshock and betraying fans". Official Xbox Magazine. Future plc. Archived from the original on September 13, 2014. Retrieved June 24, 2015. 
  9. ^ "Gears of War studio Black Tusk Studios has been renamed The Coalition". VG24/7. Retrieved 15 June 2016. 
  10. ^ "Gears of War: Ultimate Edition Reviews". GameRankings. Retrieved March 7, 2016. 
  11. ^ "Gears of War: Ultimate Edition Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved March 7, 2016. 

External links[edit]