Microsoft recently renewed the trademark for Killer Instinct, the fan favorite fighting franchise created by Rare that launched during the Super NES era. Normally, the renewal of a trademark wouldn’t be such a big deal. It’s a standard business practice. But unlike most standard business procedures however, PlayXBLA, the official (Microsoft operated) source for all things Xbox Live Arcade related made an announcement to the public that the trademark had been renewed. It’s almost as if they are looking to build excitement, on purpose. This has fueled several rounds of speculation;
- Since the announcement took place on an XBLA website, many speculate that Microsoft will simply bring the original Killer Instinct to Xbox Live Arcade.
- It has been revealed by former Rare employees that Rare once sought to revive the franchise with a new high-definition entry for the Xbox 360, but that at the time, Microsoft wasn’t interested. Could we see a new Killer Instinct title emerge in the near future?
- Finally, because Rare has focused solely on Kinect development since the accessory’s launch, some speculate that we could see a new Kinect enabled Killer Instinct, perhaps for Microsoft’s next-console, where the next iteration of Kinect will be much more powerful.
Where the truth lies, we’re entirely unsure, but the fact is, something does seem to be up. Companies don’t normally celebrate simple legal procedures. If any of Microsoft’s plans for the Killer Instinct franchise do involve Kinect, you can count on Xbox Kinect Fans to bring you the news when it breaks. In the mean time, check out our Primer feature on Rare, which delves into the history of the studio and their franchises, including Killer Instinct.