Microsoft has closed completely its Aces Studio, the game group that once developed and maintained Flight Simulator. The Aces game Studio was known for developing the Flight Simulator,Combat Fight Simulator and Train Simulator series of videogames. On January 22 Microsoft announced its plan to lay off 5000 employees. However Microsoft is tightlipped about which divisions will be laid off.
According to GameSutra the Aces Studio was affected heavily by corporate layoffs.According to a Microsoft spokesman,the decision was made within Microsoft's Internal Entertainment Business "to align our people against our highest priorities."
Former ACES developer Phil Taylor reported in his blog that the studio has indeed been largely closed, with six employees retained to fulfill contractual duties,though he comments on the hope that Flight Simulator may continue to exist as a franchise in some other form.
Aces will join the small but growing list of former Microsoft game studios, which includes Ensemble, Bungie and Digital Anvil, among others.