Cliff Bleszinski has told CVG that Epic is closer to its fanbase than ever before - and that its next star may even come from the community's ranks.
Discussing yesterday's announced Gears of War title update 6, the Epic designer admitted that many of the game's upcoming tweaks originated from the community.
He told CVG that the launch of Gears Of War 2's online mode was "bumpy" - but that Epic's community had helped the studio iron out many of its initial problems.
He said: "We've always had a tradition of supporting our products as well as a continued culture of ongoing learning. The launch of Gears 2's online was bumpy.
"Over the last while we've continued to tweak and refine that experience through regular title updates that not only improve the online performance and matchmaking times but also tune the game and weapon balance. Many of those game tweaks have come from our design team interacting with our fans on the official Epic forums.
He continued: "The gaming world right now is filled with so many stellar games vying for players attention and the best way to remain successful and relevant is by keeping your fans happy. Listening to them, interacting with them, and quite often simply giving them what they want when possible keeps them engaged as long term fans of your studio.
"Bungie and Blizzard have done a stellar job at this and we're evolving into a studio that embraces our fan base more than ever. Besides, today's Epic fan and promising UDK modder could be tomorrow's star Epic programmer/designer."
The latest Gears 2 title update - the game's sixth - adds the ability to join Social Matches in progress, eliminates exploits in certain maps and fixes problems with Submission, Annex, King of the Hill, and Guardian games modes.