At a recent Canadian Community Party, Epic VP Mark Rein was on hand to take a light-hearted open floor Q&A. Aside from a lot of information on Gears' gameplay and marketing, Rein also joked about the rumours of how the game costs Microsoft one billion dollars.
Thanks to the wonder of Major Nelson and his latest podcast, you can quite clearly hear Rein said "That story you all heard about us costing Microsoft a billion dollars, that's actually true!"
He continued: "So what happened was, my partner Tim Sweeney, we kept arguing and we really wanted a hard drive in every single machine; that was something we really wanted but we realized that the 512 megs of RAM was way more important, cause otherwise you couldn't do this level of graphics if you had to both write your program and do your graphics in 256 megs. Nothing would really look that HD.
"So we argued and argued, and what Tim did is he actually sent a screenshot of what Gears of War would look like if we only had 256 megs of memory. So the day they made the decision, we were apparently the first developer they called; we were at Game Developers Conference, was it two years ago, and then I got a call from the chief financial officer of MGS and he said 'I just want you to know you cost me a billion dollars' and I said, 'we did a favour for a billion gamers'."
Thanks to www.teamxbox.com