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Avalanche opens casual online studio Expansive Worlds

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The Hunter (well, technically, the hunted)

Having created massive worlds for the Just Cause series, Swedish developer Avalanche has formed a new studio called Massive Worlds focusing on games in the casual online space. GamesIndustry.biz (login required) reports that the new unit will (unsurprisingly) be developing games using Avalanche's in-house game engine -- the same engine that powers Just Cause 2 -- but hasn't announced any specific titles just yet.

The company recently acquired full rights to the free-to-play online hunting sim The Hunter, which it co-developed with UK studio Emote. Further development of the game -- along with the rest of the studio's titles -- will be overseen by Stefan Pettersson, who joins Expansive Worlds as managing director. Prior to taking the job, Pettersson worked as a consultant and, at one point, a producer/designer at Avalanche. (We're sure that had nothing whatsoever to do with his selection.)

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