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(Pocket-lint) - Microsoft Studios has acquired the rights to the Gears of Wars games franchise from Mundane Games, thereby bringing one of its biggest exclusive series in house. In addition, the company says it will be installing Rod Fergusson ,former director of production for the first three games, as a studio lead at Black Tusk Studios, the development house tasked with creating the next chapter.

Gears of War has been a hugely successful franchise for Microsoft, grossing over $1 billion (£603.3 million) in its lifetime, even though it was almost exclusively available on just one machine, the Xbox 360. A PC version of the first game was released, but none of the sequels made it on to that platform.

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The fourth game in the franchise was considered a disappointment in comparison to the heights reached by its predecessors. The prequel was not received as well critically and although it sold more than a million copies, it wasn't as big a hit as Gears of War 3.

Now Black Tusk and Fergusson have a chance to debut the franchise on the Xbox One, as well as to reinvigorate it for Xbox 360. The studio lead returns after a stint as producer on Bioshock Infinite, so it will be interesting to see if he brings any of that experience to the next Gears of War game. We can only hope.

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Writing by Rik Henderson.