UPDATE: We had an overwhelming response to the call for applications – more than 450 of you gave it your best shot! It will take some time to sort through them all, but those of you lucky enough to make it to the next round should expect to hear from us in the next week or two.

Unfortunately, the volume of responses means that we won’t be able to notify those of you who didn’t make the cut. Thanks to everyone who applied!

If you’ve ever thought you’d fit in as a member of The Escapist’s news team, now’s your chance to find out.

We’re looking to add a few fresh bodies to our team of news correspondents, both in the US and abroad. This is a great opportunity for those looking to get into game journalism, because even though experience is appreciated, it is not required. This is a part-time, freelance position. The particulars of salary and schedule will be discussed with candidates who make it past the initial application process. Also, you should be aware that you’ll be working with me on pretty much a daily basis. And by “aware,” I mean “warned.” Cue evil laughter.

Most jobs want you to fill out some long form in order to apply, but this is not most jobs. If you have a resume or CV, you can certainly send it along, but what’s most important is whether or not you understand the general concepts that go into writing a news post. So here’s what we want you to do:

1. Take a moment to familiarize yourself with our news posts. Though all of our writers have their own unique voices, there are constants throughout the posts. Do your best to get a handle on that.

2. Read the following (completely fake) news story that appeared on the (equally fake) game site, Gamepunx.

3. Rewrite the news story for publication on The Escapist.

3. Submit your news story, along with your full name and any other writing samples you would like to submit to [email protected]. Please put the text of your news post in the body of your email – not as an attachment -, and be sure to put “News Application” in your subject line. Submissions not meeting these criteria will not be considered. Deadline for submission is 7/21/2011. You must be 18 to apply.

Here’s the news story:

Epic Games has had some pretty amazing luck with both Gears of War and Infinity Blade, and now it turns out that the company is bringing the two franchises together. Speaking to Gamepunx Magazine in an exclusive interview, Cliff Blezinski revealed that Epic is going to release a new Gears spin-off that will incorporate characters and gameplay elements from Infinity Blade.

According to Cliffy B, the new game, Gears of War: Infinite, will take place between the second and third Gears games. However, this is going to be a Kinnect-only title, as it will utilize motion controls like those in Infinity Blade.

“Gamers really responded to Infinity Blade‘s fast-paced, frantic hack-and-slash gameplay on the iPhone,” said Blezinski. “Epic has been trying to figure out how we could make a Gears Kinect game that wouldn’t be just a rail shooter, and then we suddenly realized, ‘Duh! The answer’s right in front of our faces!'”

The game will actually be a part of both franchises’s cannon storylines. After the events of Gears of War 2, Marcus Phoenix comes across a fragmented record of a legendary weapon called the Infinity Blade. He sets out to track down the weapon and finally comes across the ruins of a castle that is crawling with what appear to be medieval knights.

“Marcus gets ambushed and his gun gets damaged so it can’t shoot,” Blezinski explained. “But the chainsaw still works, so suddenly the man who brought a gun to a sword fight is forced to get his hands dirty.”

“The best thing about Infinity Blade is that -as anyone who’s played through it can tell you- the game has some serious sci-fi elements in its plot. There’s also a ton of stuff that’s been left vague up until now, like what planet it takes place on and when its events occurred. Now we get to fill in those gaps in an incredibly exciting way.”

Wyoming-based developer Table Interactive (the studio behind Infinity Blade) is working closely with Epic Games on the project, “Since they already have a lot of experience incorporating motion controls into a game using the Unreal Engine.”

Blezinski also said that Gears of War: Infinite will have something for gamers who are playing through Gears of War 3: “When you hit certain milestones in Infinite, you’ll unlock new content for Gears 3. I don’t want to spoil things, but it’s possible that Marcus might get some new weapons and armor to use against the Locust hordes.”

At the moment, no release date has been revealed for Gears of War: Infinite, but Blezinski is promising that the game will come out, “sooner than you’d expect.”

If you have any questions not covered by this post, you can feel free to PM me or submit an email. Good luck!

UPDATE: Many of you have asked if it’s ok for you to include writing samples as attachments, or if they need to be in the body of the email, too. Attachments for things like extra writing samples or CVs is ok.

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