Microsoft has officially announced that they have renewed the trademark for the popular fighting game franchise Killer Instinct. The announcement comes from Microsoft’s PlayXBLA, a site devoted to news regarding Xbox Live Arcade games.
“Our legal eagles” says the announcement, “have authorized us to say: “We have either renewed or refiled a trademark application in various jurisdictions.”
Unfournately the announcement is very brief and Microsoft is silent on details regarding what they intend to do with the fighting game series now that they have reactivated the trademark for it. Given the site the announcement is on, it is likely it will have something to do with Xbox Live Arcade.
The most likely possibly being Microsoft intends to port the classic games for play on it. But, with the announcement, speculation is growing that this may be a potential sign of a Killer Instinct 3 being developed.
Its success led to a sequel, Killer Instinct 2, being released exclusively in the arcade. It was, however, released in modified form as Killer Instinct Gold for the Nintendo 64 in 1996. To date it is has been the final game in the action packed franchise.
The trademark for Killer Instinct is one of many Rare created games Microsoft owns due to its buyout of the popular UK game developer in 2002. Other Rare game franchises whose trademark Microsoft now owns include Banjo-Kazooie and Perfect Dark. Those two franchises have been given new games following the buyout but have both been marred by unfavorable reception from critics and reviewers. Inner conflicts between Rare and Microsoft haven’t helped matters either and caused the departure of two founders, Chris and Tim Stamper.
Despite the turmoils of its creator, this is big news for Killer Instinct and potentially means it is waking up from a long slumber. Although this announcement is lacking in details, it looks like it will be returning in some shape or form. Just what form that return will take is yet unknown and up for debate at this time. More developments will be reported as they unfold.