Press Release
Contact: Dara-Lynn Pelechatz
Stainless Steel Studios
(617) 437-6605

Age of Empires® Creator/Lead Designer
Forms New Company, Announces First Game Title & Plans
Major Innovations In Real-Time Strategy Gaming

May 28, 1998 - Rick Goodman, creator and lead designer of Microsoft's award winning Age of Empires® real-time, PC-based strategy game, has left Ensemble Studios, Corp., the game development company he co-founded in 1995 with his brother, to establish Stainless Steel Studios, Inc.

Stainless Steel Studios will focus exclusively on developing real-time strategy games for the next millennium, and has already begun developing Empire Earth® (working title), a title that will establish a new category of real-time strategy games when it's released.

Using the proven, record-breaking success of Age of Empires as an inspiration, Empire Earth will allow gamers to experience an entirely new type of real-time strategy game. "The game goes well beyond basic military conquest, yet doesn't compromise the intuitive player interface and mass market appeal of Age of Empires," said Goodman, the founder and president of Stainless Steel Studios.

"Using a disciplined software development methodology, Stainless Steel Studios is dedicated to developing innovative, 'AAA' game designs using highly advanced artificial intelligence. A newly designed game engine is being created specifically to address the requirements and demands of Empire Earth," stated Goodman. "The vision behind Empire Earth is far grander than current game engines can handle. We are developing new technology around our vision, which incorporates game play principles and design elements never before seen in real-time strategy games."

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Working full-time from Stainless Steel Studios' main offices to develop Empire Earth, is a talented team of hand-picked designers, programmers and artists, with a proven track record in the gaming industry. "We have created a team that is fully experienced in the entire production cycle of game development. In addition to having game-related experience, we have hired people who have exceptionally high levels of discipline and who are innovators and creative geniuses in their specific field," said Goodman.

Stainless Steel's team-oriented approach to developing top-notch and cutting-edge games goes far beyond simply hiring top talent and generating truly innovative ideas. "I believe our development team is the perfect size. Everyone has a passion for games and has strong input into the game design process. Everyone on the team works on a peer-to-peer relationship, has a tremendous amount of responsibility, and unprecedented creative freedom. It's my belief that a company should be run with a high degree of consensus when it comes to development-related decision making. This management style is one that other game developers fail to take advantage of, and as a result, some don't foster the high level of moral and creativity among employees that we have established. It's this group dynamic that ultimately helps lead to the creation of superior games and allows people to achieve their maximum potential," added Goodman.

Based in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Stainless Steel Studios, Inc. was founded in January 1998. Stainless Steel Studios plans to announce an exclusive worldwide distribution and marketing partnership with a major software publisher later this summer.

For more information about Stainless Steel Studios or Empire Earth, visit the company's Web site at or call:

Dara-Lynn Pelechatz
Director of Corporate Communications
(617) 437-6605
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Microsoft and Age of Empires are registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation. Empire Earth is a trademark of Stainless Steel Studios, Inc.

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