Epic doubles down NC campus

Gears of War developer reportedly purchases $1.57M, five-acre plot next to primary North Carolina headquarters to accommodate growing tester pool.

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Since the launch of Gears of War in November 2006, Epic Games has been the game developer of the hour. A week scarcely goes by without a new company signing on to license Epic Games' popular game-development technology Unreal Engine 3, and in November Epic shipped Unreal Tournament III for the PC to a warm critical reception, with the similarly well-received PlayStation 3 version following shortly thereafter in December. An Xbox 360 version is expected later this year.

Success breeds expansion, and Epic is doing just that by doubling its Cary, North Carolina, operations, reports The News & Observer. Epic Games reportedly purchased a $1.57 million, five-acre plot next door to its 31,000-square-foot headquarters last month, with the intention of moving temporary testers sent by its games' publishers closer to its base of operations.

"The feedback loop is better," Rein told the News & Observer. "We can sit in a room and say, 'Hey, here's a bug I saw. Can you recreate this and tell me what you think is causing it?' They're constantly playing through the game and testing every little level, and it takes a lot of people to test a game properly."

Speaking to the News & Observer, Epic vice president Mark Rein said the company currently employees 94 people. Rein said Epic hires on average one employee a month, a trend he expects will continue for the next two years. In addition to continued development on its Unreal Engine technology, Epic is believed to be hard at work on the next Gears of War game, which Microsoft has said will be a trilogy.

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