Last weekend, SidGames, a web site devoted to strategy games, reported that Master of Orion 3 had been officially announced when certain members of the design team for the game appeared on the forums of SidGames to speak to rabid fans. Immediately, threads blossomed that discussed everything from game suggestions to why Master of Orion 3 would actually be a bad idea.
GameSpot News contacted Microprose to get an official confirmation of the game's existence. However, when we spoke to Matt Nowak at Hasbro's public-relations firm, he said the game was not in development. When we spoke to Tom Nichols, director of the Microprose business unit, he said he could not confirm that the game was in development, but he did state, "As you know, the nature of is that games often begin development before they are announced."
When we asked about Master of Magic 2, which SidGames reported was cancelled several months ago, Nichols said that indeed, the game was being developed at the Alameda offices of Microprose but that when those offices were closed, the Master of Magic 2 project was cancelled. Incidentally, the team that was working on Master of Magic 2 was the same team that worked on Birth of the Federation. Nichols said that Microprose has not given up on the MOM franchise, and the company is considering the fate of the Master of Magic series.
We'll keep you informed as more developments occur.