Ed Fries

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Ed Fries is the former vice president of game publishing at Microsoft during much of the Xbox's lifecycle.

Fries fell in love with games while playing early arcade games like Frogger. He has both parents who are engineers, and he sees in his love for games something similar to his father's love for airplanes while working at Boeing.[1] As a teen he programmed clones of popular arcade games on the Atari 800, and a publisher found him and offered him the chance to have his games published. [1]

After earning a B.S. in Computer Science from New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology in 1986 Fries returned to the Seattle area to join Microsoft on productivity software. He has referred to this time as being like Ender's Game and says "We were recruited as children to fight in their wars, Excel vs Lotus 1-2-3 and Word vs WordPerfect." [1] In the late 1990s he led the team that created the first version of the Xbox game console.[1]

He was a prime evangelist of the platform to game developers and had an important role in the acquisition of developers Bungie Studios, Ensemble Studios and Rare.[2]

Fries left Microsoft in January 2004.[2] He consulted with a startup company, FireAnt, that was later sold to Sony Online Entertainment. He was also involved with several startups including Ageia, which aims to bring the first "physics accelerator" chip for games to market, and Emotiv Systems, a company building an EEG based game controller.

Fries is currently[when?] working on bringing his favorite game, World of Warcraft, to three-dimensional life with his startup company, Figure Prints. The company makes 3D models of a player's characters using a fleet of Z Corporation printers. Within the first 12 hours of his company going live, over 4,000 people had requested an order for a model. Fries explains in an interview that each model can take about one week to complete.

In July 2010, Fries released an Atari 2600 game inspired by the Halo series, called Halo 2600.[3]

He is currently[when?] listed as the advisor for the Ouya, an Android-based game console and development platform.


Title Publisher Released Role
Age of Empires Microsoft 1997 GM
Microsoft Pinball Arcade Microsoft 1998 GM
Monster Truck Madness 2 Microsoft 1998 GM
Microsoft Combat Flight Simulator: WWII Europe Series Microsoft 1998 GM
Microsoft Flight Simulator 2000 Microsoft 1999 GM
Pandora's Box Microsoft 1999 GM
Midtown Madness Microsoft 1999 GM
Monster Truck Madness Microsoft 1999 GM
Asheron's Call Microsoft 1999 GM
Motocross Madness 2 Microsoft 2000 GM
Microsoft Classic Board Games Microsoft 2000 GM
Allegiance Microsoft 2000 GM
Halo Microsoft 2001 GM
Cel Damage Microsoft 2001 GM
Microsoft Train Simulator Microsoft 2001 GM
Microsoft Flight Simulator 2002 Microsoft 2001 GM
Conquest: Frontier Wars Microsoft 2001 GM
Oddworld: Munch's Oddysee Microsoft 2001 GM
Sneakers Microsoft 2002 GM
Kakuto Chojin: Back Alley Brutal Microsoft 2002 GM
Quantum Redshift Microsoft 2002 GM
Dungeon Siege Microsoft 2002 GM
Blinx the Time Sweeper Microsoft 2002 GM
Asheron's Call 2: Broken Wings Microsoft 2002 GM
Voodoo Vince Microsoft 2003 GM
Project Gotham Racing 2 Microsoft 2003 GM
NFL Rivals 2004 Microsoft 2003 GM
NHL Rivals 2004 Microsoft 2003 GM
Midtown Madness 3 Microsoft 2003 GM
Crimson Skies: High Road to Revenge Microsoft 2003 GM
Amped 2 Microsoft 2003 GM
Magatama Microsoft 2003 GM
Grabbed by the Ghoulies Microsoft 2003 GM
Tao Feng: Fist of the Lotus Microsoft 2003 GM
Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004 Microsoft 2003 GM
Halo 2 Microsoft 2004 GM
Rise of Nations: Gold Edition Microsoft 2004 GM
Fable Microsoft 2004 GM
Phantom Dust Microsoft 2004 GM
Breakdown Microsoft 2004 GM
Rallisport Challenge 2 Microsoft 2004 GM
Psychonauts Microsoft 2005
Fable: The Lost Chapters Microsoft 2005
Supreme Commander Microsoft 2007
Order Up! Zoo Games 2008
Halo 2600 2010 Programmer-Designer
Dark Void Airtight Games 2010 Co-Founder
Quantum Conundrum Square Enix 2012 Co-Founder
Soul Fjord Airtight Games 2014 Co-Founder
Murdered: Soul Suspect Airtight Games 2014 Co-Founder


  1. ^ a b c d Brightman, James (February 5, 2014). "The Saga of Ed Fries". Gamesindustry.biz. Retrieved April 20, 2015. 
  2. ^ a b Bishop, Todd (January 14, 2004). "The game is over for Xbox's Ed Fries". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. Retrieved September 2, 2010. 
  3. ^ Beschizza, Rob (August 3, 2010). "Former Microsoft VP brings Halo to the Atari 2600". BoingBoing. Retrieved September 2, 2010. 

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