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About John Laster

John Laster has been writing about video games for almost a decade. He's frequently found streaming on our partnered twitch channel. He's the one obsessively muttering this year is our year in relation to the Chicago Cubs. John works full time as a video game attorney at Laster Law, Follow him on Twitter and LinkedIn
Latest Posts | By John Laster
Orcs Must Die! Developer Round Table
8 years ago

Orcs Must Die! Developer Round Table

By  •  Media, News

We recently had the opportunity to visit Dallas and talk with the team behind Orcs Must Die. We recorded our own version but after hearing the recording from our …
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Orcs Must Die! Hands on Preview
8 years ago

Orcs Must Die! Hands on Preview

Ensemble Studios shutting down was a bittersweet moment for a team that had grown extremely close over the years; however, as cliché as it sounds, the doors closing on Ensemble forced the team to look at open doors full of opportunity and new possibilities. For many this meant the first chance in years to break away from an already established IP in over fifteen years presenting a chance now to take risks and reinvigorate themselves. The tight-knit group showed that it really did believe in fostering community, as when the former Microsoft subsidiary disbanded as company but the majority of its members stuck together in one of four new studios: Robot Entertainment, Bonfire (now Zynga Dallas), Windstorm Studio and New Toy.

Recently we had the opportunity to visit Robot Entertainment in Dallas. While the studio may have a new name, they haven’t forgotten all the old lessons they learned. The team still believes in community both internally and with fans. Upon entering the studio, the open environment is striking: four main quadrants of desks with no cubicles or walls and a biergarten style lunch room comprise the majority of the studio. Outside of the two war rooms, server room and executive offices, it’s an entirely open floor plan mirroring the studios own level of openness with employees. The real decisions as to what games are made don’t come from a guy in a suit with a calculator, but from a collaborative process involving the entire team.

This “organic” process started six months ago. Development on Age of Empires Online was beginning to wind down, and the studio was looking toward what their next project would be. Instead of setting their sights on the traditional three year AAA development cycle, Robot chose to focus on the downloadable segment of the industry. The shorter development time allowed the fifty person team to the ability to not become re-tied down to a singular IP for the foreseeable future. Robot started to brainstorm and create basic prototypes for some of the better ideas, one of which was Orcs Must Die.

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Super Meat Boy Masochists Rejoice: Two New Chapters of Levels Hit XBLA
8 years ago

Super Meat Boy Masochists Rejoice: Two New Chapters of Levels Hit XBLA

By  •  News

Team Meat has announced that the two newest chapters of levels have hit “the internets” on Super Meat Boy for XBLA. Contained is the highly anticipated dreaded expert remix …
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XBLA Fans and GameSauce Form New Collaboration
9 years ago

XBLA Fans and GameSauce Form New Collaboration

By  •  News, Features

Here at XBLA Fans, we are all about getting our readers the best in XBLA news, reviews, interviews, and discussion. We consider ourselves to be experts in the field, …
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XBLA Fans Review Scores Explained
9 years ago

XBLA Fans Review Scores Explained

By  •  News

What’s in a score?  We here at XBLA Fans believe that it is mostly an arbitrarily defined number. If a friend asked you to tell them about …
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XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 XBLA Game Release Master List
9 years ago

XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 XBLA Game Release Master List

By  •  Features

Huge thanks to the entire team of writers who worked on this article: Andrew Crews, Cameron Titus, John Carson, Todd Schlickbernd, Tyler Cameron and Xeserox

We’ve spent the past week searching the internet and hounding our industry contacts in an effort to compile the ultimate 2011 XBLA Game Release List. We anticipated one heck of a year for Xbox Live Arcade. So epic we couldn’t even fit everything on one page. So without further ado, check out the list:

For detailed descriptions of each of the games and videos check the links below.
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XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 XBLA Game Releases: T-Z
9 years ago

XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 XBLA Game Releases: T-Z

By  •  News

We’ve spent the past week searching the internet and hounding our industry contacts in an effort to compile the ultimate 2011 XBLA Game Release List. We anticipated on heck of a year for Xbox Live Arcade. So epic we couldn’t even fit everything on one page. So without further ado, check out the list:

Check out the rest here:

XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: A-C
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: D-F
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: G-M
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: N-R
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: S
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: T-Z
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XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 XBLA Game Releases: S
9 years ago

XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 XBLA Game Releases: S

By  •  News

We’ve spent the past week searching the internet and hounding our industry contacts in an effort to compile the ultimate 2011 XBLA Game Release List. We anticipated on heck of a year for Xbox Live Arcade. So epic we couldn’t even fit everything on one page. So without further ado, check out the list:

Check out the rest here:

XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: A-C
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: D-F
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: G-M
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: N-R
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: S
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: T-Z
Read More

XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 XBLA Game Releases: N-R
9 years ago

XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 XBLA Game Releases: N-R

By  •  News

We’ve spent the past week searching the internet and hounding our industry contacts in an effort to compile the ultimate 2011 XBLA Game Release List. We anticipated on heck of a year for Xbox Live Arcade. So epic we couldn’t even fit everything on one page. So without further ado, check out the list:

Check out the rest here:

XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: A-C
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: D-F
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: G-M
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: N-R
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: S
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: T-Z
Read More

XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 XBLA Game Releases: G-M
9 years ago

XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 XBLA Game Releases: G-M

By  •  News

We’ve spent the past week searching the internet and hounding our industry contacts in an effort to compile the ultimate 2011 XBLA Game Release List. We anticipated on heck of a year for Xbox Live Arcade. So epic we couldn’t even fit everything on one page. So without further ado, check out the list:

Check out the rest here:

XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: A-C
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: D-F
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: G-M
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: N-R
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: S
XBLA Fans Anticipated 2011 Releases: T-Z
Read More