Kingdom Under Fire: The Crusaders returning to Xbox

Microsoft will publish former NCsoft studio Phantagram's action strategy game this fall.

Just hours after it announced that two Japanese Xbox titles--Phantom Dust and True Fantasy Online--would never see American shores, Microsoft announced that it will publish a Korean-made Xbox game, Kingdom Under Fire: The Crusaders. The game is being developed by Phantagram, the Seoul-based studio that split from its onetime owner NCsoft last Christmas. After the separation, it was unclear whether Crusaders was going to find another publisher.

Kingdom Under Fire: The Crusaders is set 50 years after its predecessor, the 2001 PC game Kingdom Under Fire: A War of Heroes. Like the original, it will feature a blend of real-time strategy and action game elements. The game will sport 60 different maps, which will allow 150 units--drawn from more than 100 different character types--to battle it out at the same time. Players will direct the warfare as a general of either the good humans or the self-evidently evil Dark Legions.

Kingdom Under Fire will also be Xbox Live-enabled, letting gamers team up with other players in deathmatch battles or slay each others' armies in head-to-head mode. Microsoft said new mission packs, weapons, and armor would also be available for download at a later date.

Microsoft has announced a fall 2004 release date for Kingdom Under Fire: The Crusaders, which is currently unrated and Xbox-exclusive. For more on the game, check out GameSpot's previous coverage.

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