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Amazon is serious about gaming, hires Portal and Far Cry designers

Retailer hires Kim Swift and Clint Hocking to join its Amazon Game Studios.

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Amazon has hired Portal designer Kim Swift and Far Cry 2 designer Clint Hocking, putting the industry veterans to work at the retailer's newly established Amazon Game Studios. The two developers confirmed their moves to Amazon via their LinkedIn profiles. Kotaku also reported the news today, citing sources.

Swift is most well known for helping create the acclaimed puzzle-action game Portal and most recently worked at Airtight Games on the Ouya-exclusive Soul Fjord. She takes up the position of senior designer at Amazon. Hocking is a journeyman of sorts, spending time with big-name studios like Ubisoft, LucasArts, and Valve. He's now working at Amazon as a senior game designer.

We don't know what Swift and Hocking are working on at Amazon, but their arrival at the company hammers home the point that Amazon is serious about gaming. Last year, Halo writer Erik Nylund joined Amazon as its director of narrative design.

Earlier today, Amazon announced the Amazon Fire TV device, a set-top streaming box that plays movies and TV, as well as video games. Amazon even created a special controller for the box. Amazon also recently purchased an entire studio--Double Helix Games--though it's not clear what that company is working on.

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