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15-01-2012, 08:50 PM #1
THQ is dead: cancels all 2014 games including Warhammer MMO, looks for buyers
All according to one of IGDA's leaders.
THQ was already living dangerously, basically applying EA's 2007-2008 strategy of making pretty cool games that don't sell well. The difference is that EA could afford to lose a couple of billions and managed to recover, while uDraw HD's thermonuclear bomb destroyed THQ's value on the market.
So it looks like they cancelled all 2014 games, have no money to hype even their 2012 releases, they abandoned all Disney IPs after paying the advances with no refund and are looking for buyers. They're fucked.
I wonder what happens with their studios and IPs. I suppose the only one that's safe is that new giant Montreal studio lead by Patrice Desilets.
15-01-2012, 08:55 PM #2
I've been following a pretty hefty thread on NeoGAF for the last couple of hours on this. It's terrible news. Relic, Volition and Vigil are particular concerns for me.
In terms of what I know, including what I've read up on:
-Vigil is 100% owned by THQ. This, naturally, includes the Darksiders IP. Also worth noting that the Warhammer MMO was also being made by them. For a Darksiders 3 to happen, someone would need to buy the IP off THQ.
-Homeworld is also owned by THQ, so Relic would be unable to continue with that franchise. In both Vigil and Relic's cases, the Warhammer agreement is owned...by THQ. Any company wishing to pick up on the Dawn of War, Space Marine franchises or the MMO would have to also buy the rights to produce Games Workshop titles.
Those are the biggest things I'm aware of at the moment. Someone in the NeoGAF thread suggested that Relic would be a great purchase for Sega and I happen to agree. They fit right in with Sega's M.O, particularly with PC titles (Sega would then own Creative Assembly (Total War) and Relic giving them a good chunk of RTS franchises on the PC). As for anything else, well...
But yeah. 'They're fucked' is pretty damn apt.
EDIT: It's worth noting this hasn't exactly come out of nowhere. Their stock has been rapidly dropping, from being something like $20 (may be a little less) to $0.66 now, if not more come tomorrow's trading hours. Ouch.
15-01-2012, 09:05 PM #3
Dark Millenium Online was revealed in 2007 but I keep hearing about it since 2004. Can you imagine how much effort, time and money was poured into this project? I think it's safe to say a lot of Vigil's staff is going to get fired and unless Darksiders 2 does well (which I doubt but whatever) the whole studio will go down in flames. I could see Retro picking up the remains as they're in the same city and Vigil is one of the few studios that has something to show for the WiiU.
As for Relic - the talent that made Company of Heroes left the company years ago. Many of them formed Smoking Gun Interactive. What's left at Relic is basically a Warhammer factory, and I could see Games Workshop picking them up.
15-01-2012, 09:12 PM #4
Games Workshop do seem to have an aversion to being directly involved and besides, Relic definitely have some good talent left. I don't believe they wouldn't be able to come up with something new that wouldn't be good. The actual mechanics of whatever it is should then be fairly solid.
Some staff from Vigil were also recently picked up for Retro, who are working on something no doubt WiiU related. It wouldn't be a stretch to say that more didn't go over, especially as indeed, they have worked on WiiU material so they'd have a lead-in that others wouldn't.
I can see Vigil disbanding entirely and Relic and Volition being bought whole by another third party. EA lacks many open world games, so Volition could be a good target for them (hell, it might bring back the Red Faction series).
15-01-2012, 09:13 PM #5
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- Jun 2011
15-01-2012, 09:22 PM #6
Wow, that is terrible news. THQ was the publisher that seemed to be putting out the most AAA titles that actually interested me - I certainly bought a lot off them last year. And the number of cool IPs that they own that other companies probably wouldn't care about (Homeworld for one) adds a little extra tragedy to what is already shitty news.
15-01-2012, 09:34 PM #7
Tragic news indeed, though silver lining if the HW IP gets bought and a new title gets made. I'd be VERY VERY happy since they've sat on it for almost a decade.All times I have enjoyed greatly, have suffered greatly, both with those that loved me, and alone.
15-01-2012, 09:35 PM #8
Honestly? I'm not exactly upset. THQ's attitude towards DLC has been absolutely abhorrent in the past year or so (look at Saints Row 3 and DoW II: Retribution, and to a lesser extent Space Marine).
Yeah, they've put out some good quality titles, but two of them (RF:A & Homefront) were pretty much commercial flops or at least non-stellar performers, and that would have hit them fairly hard as it was. Add in their over-ambitious projects such as the Red Faction TV series, and it's easy to see how they got themselves into a mess.
Would definitely want to see what happens to Relic and Volition. I'd like to see ZeniMax pick up Relic (perhaps) and EA take up Volition to work on the next Mercanaries game. Maybe.
15-01-2012, 09:52 PM #9
Seems that the writing was largely on the wall for the publisher even though they had a few good developers under their wings. Hoping that EA spring for Volition as I'd be concerned what Bobby 'the IP killer' Kotick would do if he got his greasy mitts on them.
15-01-2012, 09:56 PM #10
What a shame. I kinda liked THQ, publishing few of my recent favorite IPs and me having a risk-taking image of them (S.T.A.L.K.E.R. and Metro were published by THQ, right?). It will be quite interesting to see what will happen in the coming months with THQ.
15-01-2012, 10:03 PM #11
15-01-2012, 10:03 PM #12
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- Oct 2011
Supposedly Homefront made enough to pay for development costs and marketing (had a pretty expensive marketing campaign). Then they dissolved the Homefront studio and handed it to another for a sequel.
I was really looking forward to 40K mmo, hope they stay together.
15-01-2012, 10:05 PM #13
15-01-2012, 10:10 PM #14
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- Jun 2011
This is a real shame. I wonder how it happened? Given the quality and success of quite a number of the titles coming from THQ there must have had to be some fairly serious mismanagement.
In particular I hope Relic find a good home.
15-01-2012, 10:25 PM #15
15-01-2012, 10:33 PM #16
- makes de Blob 2 for the HD twins, plans TV show and merchandise
- HUGE BOMB, developer gets shut down
- makes Red Faction Gorilla, which is a huge hit
- makes Red Faction Armageddon because people were complaining about RFG being open world, makes shitty movie, plans TV show
- HUGE BOMB, abandons franchise
- makes uDraw tablet for Wii, which is a huge hit
- makes uDraw for the HD twins
- nobody buys it (and I really mean nobody)
- stock keeps tanking since early December
And then there's the cohort of mid-tier games (Homefront, Space Marine, Saints Row 3) marketed like huge blockbusters which sold well but "not enough". Their Disney and sport shovelware isn't selling well anymore.
So right now THQ is worth less than the confirmed budget of their own Dark Millenium Online.
15-01-2012, 10:44 PM #17
You can also add that Space Marine was launched right next to Gears of War 3 and Saints Row 3 was released in one of the busiest scheduling lists filled with high profile titles that I can remember for some time. Space Marine should've had the aim of being released in August, whilst SR3 should have been pushed back to Q1 2012. Sure, less potential revenue from the Christmas rush, but the first month or so are usually devoid of high profile titles. In terms of January and February releases last year, the only major one I can think of was Dead Space 2, which did very well.
15-01-2012, 10:53 PM #18
damn. sad to see a company go. we lose players big time. who will stop EA and Activision from dividing the market in half between each other?
15-01-2012, 10:56 PM #19
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- Jun 2011
Creating software is a bad idea.
If you create boats, you can still "undo" and sell the metal.
Is not just that some mistakes where made, and some bad luck in a row. The software industry is specially bad as amplify these mistakes/errors/bad luck.
15-01-2012, 11:07 PM #20