THQ Franchises And Developers Where They Are Now
After The U.S. bankruptcy court had “granted a motion to approve a sale of the majority of THQ’s assets to multiple buyers.” The court had approved of the sale, which THQ notes that “the THQ estate will receive approximately $72 million, making the total estimated value of the estate $100 million including certain assets and other intellectual properties which were excluded from the sale.”
Jason Rubin of THQ also had this to say about their sad unfortunate state of events:
“While we had hoped that the restructuring process would allow the company to remain intact, I am heartened that the majority of our studios and games will continue under new ownership,” said THQ CEO Brian Farrell. “It has been my pleasure to work alongside this great group of people, and I am proud of the imaginative and artistic games that our team has created. Although we will no longer be able to work together with a unified mission, I am confident that the talent we have assembled will continue to make an impression on the video game industry. For those whose positions are not likely to continue, I sincerely regret this outcome and we will be meeting with you over the next few days to discuss the transition.”
“I was brought in eight months ago to help turn this ship around, and while I’m disappointed that we could not effect a sale for the entire operating business, I am pleased that the new buyers will be providing jobs to many of our very talented personnel,” added THQ president Jason Rubin. “When we first announced the sale process, I said I would be happy if the company’s games and people had a bright future, even if it meant I did not have a job at the end of it. And I still feel that way.”
THQ “will continue to employ a small number of headquarters staff beyond January 25 to assist with the transition.”
Continue to read on what happens to the franchises and developers; who found new homes and who is still left in the dust.
- SEGA has acquired all of shares of THQ Canada Inc. (Headquarters: Vancouver, Canada, “THQ Canada”) and some IPs owned by THQ Inc. (a parent company of THQ Canada) on January 24, 2013 in order to further reinforce PC game development capabilities in the U.S. and European regions. THQ Canada Inc. has developed million dollar franchise titles such as “Warhammer 40k Dawn of War” and “Company of Heroes” under the brand of Relic Entertainment Studio.
- Crytek who is already developing Homefront 2 has confirmed that they have purchased the IP rights for the Homefront franchise, mentioning that “Development work will continue on Homefront 2 at Crytek’s UK studio in Nottingham.“
- Take-Two (parent company of 2K and Rockstar) has agreed to purchase Turtle Rock Studios’ project codenamed Evolve. It was rumored that Take two would acquire Vigil and the Darksiders franchises, it seems they have said that this is not the case.
- Ubisoft has purchased the rights to publish South Park: The Stick of Truth. They have also acquired THQ Montreal, the current developer of Assassin’s Creed creator Patrice Desilets’ project codenamed 1666. Ubisoft has stated hat “THQ Montreal will join Ubisoft’s development teams.” Ubisoft also says that South Park: The Stick of Truth “is scheduled for release in calendar 2013.“
- Koch Media (owner of Dead Island publisher Deep Silver) has agreed to purchase Saints Row developer Volition as well as the publishing rights to the Metro franchise. In a statement from the Koch publisher, ”Deep Silver, Koch Media’s international publishing powerhouse, will lead all further development and marketing on the Saints Row and Metro franchises.” They have also talked about the fact that “Koch Media and Deep Silver will roll out future plans for each franchise in the coming months.”
According to Distressed Debt Investing, Ubisoft paid $3.2 million for South Park: The Stick of Truth and $2.5 million for THQ Montreal. Koch Media paid $5.8 million for Metro and $22.3 million for Volition. Crytek paid $500,000 for Homefront. No bids were placed for Vigil.
SEGA had bid $26.6 million for Relic, and a second-place bid came from Bethesda parent company ZeniMax Media, who offered $26.3 million. There were reports that Take-Two paid $10.8 million for Evolve, with a second place bid for $250,000 coming from Turtle Rock itself.
Many THQ employees, meanwhile, report having lost their jobs via social networks.
It is a very sad day indeed when a great industry veteran has to shut down its doors, lay off some great and talented workers and see a lot their franchises leave them. The only good news is that many have already found other developers to bring in some of their (THQ) developers and properties, while sadly some are still trying to find new homes.
I can only wish them the best in their new transitions, those that were lucky enough and for them to continue making great properties while those still in limbo, we wish you the best and that you can find new work soon.
Also for those who lost their jobs, not only us, but everyone in the gaming industry offers their condolences and anyone looking for help, there are many posting jobs and positions such as this Tweet from Naughty Dog:
Also from twitter this was tweeted from Platinum Games that though it is nothing official they might be interested in snatching up the Darksiders IP from a translated tweet, “In THQ studio and IP selling off auction, Darksiders is unsold? [We] wanna buy it…on the cheap…”
Even worse though many of us are still hurt and worried that THQ‘s franchises, such as Darksiders, MX vs. ATV, and Red Faction, have yet to find a buyer and what does that mean for the future of these properties?
Though at the moment WWE Games are at the moment still without a suitor, but it seems someone is already making negotiations outside of the courtroom on who will buy the IP.
But for the others franchises still haven’t found a new home that doesn’t mean they’re out of luck.
For those franchises that did not get sold off, former president, Jason Rubin responded, “There will be a separate process to sell off the back catalog and IP. That process will take place in the coming weeks.”
So we will have to wait a little bit longer and hope that great franchises like that of Darksiders will be able find a new home yet.