Killer Instinct Dev Acquired By Amazon; Microsoft Find “New Development Partner”

By Ishaan . February 6, 2014 . 4:48am

Double Helix, developers of the new Strider and Killer Instinct, have been acquired by Amazon, reports Tech Crunch.


The studio’s 75 employees are now part of Amazon and will continue to operate out of their Orange County headquarters. Amazon intends to use the studio to “build innovative games for customers”.


Meanwhile, Microsoft, who own the Killer Instinct franchise, told Polygon that they will continue to further develop Killer Instinct on Xbox One with “a new development partner”.

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  • KingGunblader

    Great, Double Helix finally gets around to making some quality games for once (or game… haven’t been able to try Strider yet) and they get bought out by Amazon, of all things.

    This can’t be good for Killer Instinct.

    • xAKUM3TSUx

      Depending on the next developer I say 50/50. But I’m betting it wont be good :(

    • There’s not been good news for Killer Instinct since it was acquired by Microsoft and practically anything it gets turns to crap.

      • Shippoyasha

        MS does okay with some game devs they get but their Kinect and multimedia focus really throws a lot of their game divisions up for a loop. Which is a shame because they are perfectly capable of making quality 1st and 2nd party games.

        Killer Instinct was a damn good effort even though console politics forced an early digital release.

        Just some minor changes in the way they fund new games and lock up exclusives would help a lot. Something Sony learned a few years into the PS3 lifespan.

        • I was actually going a bit further than just games for Microsoft. Software in general.

          How many ads have been injected into Skype since MS got a hold of it? A lot.

    • Lucky Dan

      They still honoring their contracts seems like an arms length company for Amazon in the gaming industry.

  • Crevox

    Meh, doesn’t look so good for Killer Instinct now; I doubt their new development partner will live up to what Double Helix did

    • Lucky Dan

      Wut? Front Mission Evolved? Battleship? Silent hill: Homecoming?
      Wut? Yea the only company that probably do worse than Double helix is Microsoft acquire the company that made AMY.

      • Crevox

        Regardless of past developments, I really think they nailed this one.

      • Shippoyasha

        DH seemed to have really turned it around with Killer Instinct though. Even guys like Rocksteady used to make shovelware titles once.

    • subsamuel01

      Plus strider looks amazing too.

  • malek86

    Well this is the weirdest news of the day. I’ll take it as proof that Amazon wants to compete in the console space indeed. I wonder if this is more worrying for Sony/MS/Nintendo or for Valve and their SteamOS. Or maybe for Ouya.

    • Crevox

      Acquiring a video game developer, to make video games, has nothing to do with competing in “the console space”

    • Shippoyasha

      What if Amazon decides to release a new proprietary controller that can hook up with a Kindle? Their tablets are plenty powerful to run games and all they need to push is an original controller. Maybe they can do streaming games with their cloud network.

      • malek86

        Could be, but I don’t see the point of buying such a big studio (Double Helix is 75 employees!) for mobile games only. After all, there’s a bunch of Android developers making games for the Kindle already.

  • lordsofskulls

    I belive in Amazon as long as they don’t make them start making tablet/phone video games.

    • Mir Teiwaz

      The only piece of hardware they sell is the Kindle. Unless they plan to bring out a new piece of hardware or have DH develop games for other consoles, it seems pretty likely that they’ll be making tablet games for the Kindle/phones/tablets.

      • Godmars

        They’re suppose to be coming out with Android based console.

  • Kornelious

    Amazon!? Well as long as Microsoft loses in some way…

    • Why? You can not like the Xbox One all you like but making one of the better launch titles in for a console in years is pretty good and wishing something disrupts that is kinda silly IMO

      • Kornelious

        I personally think Amazon will do good with it though, plus it deserves to be on BOTH next gen consoles.

        • Sergio Briceño

          In your opinion, in mine Mario deserves to be everywhere. But it’s owned by nintendo so they deserve for it to be only on their system. Just like MS deserves KI.

        • You do know that Rare owns Killer Instinct correct?
          MS owns Rare and thus they still own it.

          Double Helix doesnt own the KI IP, they were contracted to make KI. So yeah Amazon now owning a another 3rd party developer is not really a good thing.

          • Kornelious

            Accuization by third parties are confusing :(

          • Its alright video games in general are confusing now.

          • Kornelious

            Word :P

  • MasterScrub

    It might be a good thing to point out that some of the people who were working on KI are still around.

  • Ferrick

    Kindle instinct, 2015

    • Kayriss Wins

      Plz god no why?

    • Lucky Dan

      Silent Hill 9: The kindling

  • fairysun

    Woahh ! Amazon is going into gaming business, as developer.

  • O SNAP


    Thank the gaming gods. Now there is one less developer for CAPCOM and Konami to use to ruin their franchises.

    Hey, Amazon, I hear “good” things about Fart, uh excuse me, Mercury Steam and Ninja Theory.

    • MasterScrub

      But… the new Strider looks awesome. And Double Helix made it.

      • Laer_HeiSeiRyuu

        I dunno, looks like a game quickly made in Unity to me

  • AuraGuyChris

    *Turns on Amazon game*

    *Screen encourages gamer to purchase Amazon products*

    • Only way I would buy an Amazon console is if I got a few years of Prime for free.

  • Judgephoenix

    I thought my friend was BSIng me when he told me this like 4-5 days ago then I start seeing it XD.

  • Sperium3000

    Now I’m really get I didn’t get an XBOX ONE, considering now there’s a chance the one good game may turn sour.

  • Liamv2

    I guess this supports those amazon console rumors.

    • Laer_HeiSeiRyuu

      Amazon said they were false

      • Liamv2

        Now i’m really confused.

  • Godmars

    So what will it say if Rare doesn’t get put back in charge of its own IP? How will it speak for the shape they’re in much less MS’s confidence in them.

  • ndjn3979

    By…Amazon? Since when did they directly develop games?

  • subsamuel01

    New Innovative games means mobile garbage, or something for their remoured android console. Either way R.I.P Double Helix.

  • doubleO7

    Seems there won’t be much of a change as far as the core dev team is concerned. They’ll likely just me moved over to this “new development partner.”

    • Shady Shariest

      Heh… So amazon bought the studio they wanted. Just without the people they were looking for?

  • Hector Velar

    ha good thing i didn’t bought a half complete game. And good for them, Amazon is so much better company to work for. Now it really is never going to get finished or done right. lesson here is don’t jump into the hype band wagon and buy half assed games specially from a neo natzi company such is Microsoft.

  • leingod

    What worries me is KI itself. What’s available of the game is great, and I really want it to keep going on.

  • hazelnut1112

    hah, now they’re Amazon’s problem.

  • Yan Zhao

    Does this mean Amazon want to publish games now? Well this is random.

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