You have to give Red 5 Studios credit for tenacity, if nothing else. When they initially announced their connection with Intel via licensing the Offset Engine, the plan was to use Red 5's upcoming fantasy MMO,
codenamed Project Offset, to showcase Intel's high-end Larrabee processors. However, last month, Intel decided to scrap their plans for the Offset Engine, and redirect the Larrabee processor towards more business-type uses. Meanwhile, despite Red 5 having financial difficulties requiring a layoff of staff, they're continuing on. This is all thanks, in large part, to China's The9, who have stepped in to give them a $20 million infusion of cash in exchange for a majority stake in their company.
While some startup studios might fold after a series of large setbacks like this, word is that
development on Project Offset continues, according to a story on Gamasutra. Only now, it's running on a "highly modified" version of the original Intel Offset Engine, giving this graphics intensive first-person MMO life. While details are still thin as ever beyond the game being a fantasy title, we hope that this newest partnership with The9 coupled with the recent infusion of cash helps their studio get back on track.
[Update: We've received word from Red 5 that they have no relationship to the canceled Project Offset, but they are still using a highly modified Offset Engine to continue their work on their own game.]