Epic Games hasn't released a new game in their Unreal series since 2007. President Mike Capps admitted in a new interview that the company has neglected their shooter series in favor of other games.

"It's been a long time since we shipped an Unreal game, and it's an awfully loved franchise that we hold pretty dear here," Capps told IndustryGamers. "We haven't been giving it the attention it deserves because we've been focusing on Gears of War and we're still a relatively small company."

"At some point you wonder why we don't rename the engine the Gears Engine or something," Capps joked, in reference to the Unreal Engine.

Capps says that it makes sense to return to the Unreal series, though. If nothing else, it makes sense from a business standpoint.

"We've been sort of focused on making new properties, which you've seen with Shadow Complex, BulletStorm and Infinity Blade, but sometimes I think just as a businessman that maybe we should be spending some more time with our existing franchises."

Back in 2009, Epic CEO Tim Sweeney said that Unreal Tournament 4 is "several years away". Would it be too optimistic to expect UT4 in 2012? Probably. I'd imagine the people Epic would want working on UT4 are the ones working on Gears of War 3 currently. GoW3 won't be out until September of this year, though.

There's always a chance that Epic will just start working on Gears of War 4 instead. It is, after all, a cash cow franchise. However, GoW3 does complete the current story arc so Epic might consider this a good time to take a break from that property and focus their attention elsewhere.

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