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Gaming Forums => General Gaming => Topic started by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 06, 2010, 05:53:21 PM

Title: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 06, 2010, 05:53:21 PM
Games Industry Death Watch 2009 (http://forums.penny-arcade.com/showpost.php?p=13038018&postcount=1677)

Quote from: January 2009
- Jaleco closes (IP and $7.736m/$17.68m loan sold to Game Yarou for $0.01)
http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/new...hp?story=21930 (http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=21930)

- MS ACES (Flight Simulator team gone)
http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/new...hp?story=21981 (http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=21981)
- MS cuts 30% of testers at MGS + unspecified GFW team
http://kotaku.com/5138389/more-micro...-windows-group (http://kotaku.com/5138389/more-microsoft-layoffs-hit-game-testers-games-for-windows-group)

- Sega cuts 30 in San Francisco
http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/new...hp?story=21942 (http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=21942)

- Eidos cuts 30 people at Crystal Dynamics
http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/new...hp?story=21809 (http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=21809)

- Eidos closes Rockpool Games (Manchester) [mobile]
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...chester-studio (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/eidos-closes-manchester-studio)

- Seta Corp (Super Entertainment & Total Amusement) closed
http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/new...hp?story=21943 (http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=21943)

- EA to cut 10% of staff and 9 studios consolidated/closed by March
---- unspecifed # @ Tiburon (Madden and Tiger Woods divisions confirmed hit)
---- Blackbox (200 out of 350 jobs cut, remainder absorbed into EA Burnaby [Vancouver])
---- 21 customer service, half of QA, all of playtest group @ Mythic

http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/new...hp?story=21974 (http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=21974)
http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/new...hp?story=21931 (http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=21931)

- unspecified cuts at Sony and MS (kotaku sez bulk of the current 1400 cut from MS are from Entertainment & Devices)

Nexon closes Humanature studio (Vancouver) 90 Jobs lost
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...anature-studio (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/nexon-closes-humanature-studio)

Unspecified layoffs at Kuju in US and UK
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...across-studios (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/kuju-confirms-redundancies-across-studios)

Ensemble closes
http://www.ensemblestudios.com/blogs...nd-thanks.aspx (http://www.ensemblestudios.com/blogs/bshelley/archive/2009/01/29/goodbye-and-thanks.aspx)

Disney Interactive Studios layoff ~70 at Propoganda, confirms plans to"consolidate a handful of its studios, including Avalanche Software andthe Fall Line studio."
http://blog.wired.com/games/2009/01/...unced-tur.html (http://blog.wired.com/games/2009/01/unannounced-tur.html)
Quote from: February 2009
Brighter Minds (World of Goo) goes Bankrupt
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...-goes-bankrupt (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/world-of-goo-publisher-goes-bankrupt)

THQ Mobile shuts down in San Diego, Germany and UK (~100 jobs)
http://blog.wired.com/games/2009/02/...be-bomber.html (http://blog.wired.com/games/2009/02/would-be-bomber.html)

Action Pants (British-Columbia) acquired by Ubisoft
http://kotaku.com/5145390/ubisoft-acquires-action-pants (http://kotaku.com/5145390/ubisoft-acquires-action-pants)

Free Radical acquired by Crytek
http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/new...hp?story=22156 (http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=22156)

EA to close 12 facilities + 1100 jobs
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...g-USD641m-loss (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/ea-to-close-12-facilities-following-USD641m-loss)

Snowblind Studios acquired by Warner Bros
http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/new...hp?story=22178 (http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=22178)

Eidos drops casual studio (Gimme5games)
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...l-games-studio (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/eidos-drops-casual-games-studio)

Sega cuts 18% of workforce (560 jobs)
http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/new...hp?story=22239 (http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=22239)

NCSoft cuts 55 at NC West (Europe)
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...uropean-office (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/nc-west-cuts-dow-european-office)

Midway files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy
http://www.midway.com/us/pr/mpr_5591.html (http://www.midway.com/us/pr/mpr_5591.html)

Rare cuts artist and engineer positions (12 known)
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...neer-positions (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/rare-axes-artist-and-engineer-positions)

Popcap acquires Gastronaut Studios
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...es-xbla-studio (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/popcap-acquires-xbla-studio)

Fillpoint acquires Crave Entertainment and SVG Distribution
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...-crave-and-svg (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/fillpoint-acquires-crave-and-svg)
Quote from: March 2009
THQ cuts majority of Volition's (Saint's Row) QA staff - 86 of 102
http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/new...hp?story=22562 (http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=22562)

THQ to sell or close Big HUge Games, Heavy Iron and Incinerator becoming independent.
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...r-close-studio (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/thq-to-sell-big-huge-games-or-close-studio)

Namco to buy all branches of D3 publisher, including studio Vicious Cycle
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...-d3p-businesse (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/namco-to-acquire-complete-d3p-businesse)
Title: Games Industry Death Watch Q2 2009
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 06, 2010, 05:57:36 PM
Quote from: April 2009
THQ confirms unspecified layoffs at BigHugeGames, still looking for sale
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...big-huge-games (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/thq-confirms-lay-offs-at-big-huge-games)
Quote from: May 2009
3D Realms closes
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...s-closes-doors (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/3d-realms-closes-doors)

Microsoft Game Studios acquires BigPark
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...cquire-bigpark (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/microsoft-to-acquire-bigpark)

38 Studios acquires BigHugeGames from THQ
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...big-huge-games (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/38-studios-acquires-big-huge-games)

Grin Studios cuts 160 people
http://forums.cgsociety.org/showthre...?f=59&t=768094 (http://forums.cgsociety.org/showthread.php?f=59&t=768094)

Factor 5 closes
http://www.edge-online.com/news/lair...actor-5-closes (http://www.edge-online.com/news/lair-dev-factor-5-closes)
Quote from: June 2009
Management Buy-Out/Closure of Chemistry (Kuju)
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...emistry-studio (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/mbo-or-closure-for-kujus-chemistry-studio)

Deadline Games (Watchman Game) files for bankruptcy
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...for-bankruptcy (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/deadline-games-files-for-bankruptcy)

Crystal Dynamics cuts 25 more people
http://gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=23989 (http://gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=23989)

Midway San Diego and Newcastle face closure by end of June.
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...by-end-of-june (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/midway-newcastle-san-diego-face-closure-by-end-of-june)

America's Army studio closes
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...o-closes-doors (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/americas-army-studio-closes-doors)

Rockstar lays of 10% of New England staff
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...d-staff-report (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/rockstar-lays-off-10-percent-of-new-england-staff-report)

ZeniMax (owner of Bethsoft) acquires id Software
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...es-id-software (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/zenimax-acquires-id-software)
Title: Games Industry Death Watch Q3 2009
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 06, 2010, 06:01:18 PM
Quote from: July 2009
Heavy Hammer lays off Blue Omega team
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...damnation-team (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/blue-omega-lays-off-damnation-team)

Sony Online Entertainment lays off 5% of staff
http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/new...hp?story=24483 (http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=24483)

Midway Closes Chicago Corporate Headquarters and Newcastle Studio
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...rporate-office (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/60-jobs-go-as-midway-closes-chicago-corporate-office)
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...studio-closure (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/midway-confirms-newcastle-studio-closure)
Quote from: August 2009
Grin shuts down
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...ompany-closure (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/grin-confirms-company-closure)

THQ Buys Midway San Diego
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...n-diego-studio (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/thq-buys-midway-san-diego-studio)

EA cuts back staff at Maxis
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...staff-at-maxis (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/ea-cuts-back-staff-at-maxis)

Raven lays off 30-35
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...of-wolfenstein (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/raven-lays-off-staff-following-release-of-wolfenstein)
Quote from: September 2009
Bottlerocket closes
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...oses-its-doors (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/bottlerocket-closes-its-doors)

Disney acquires Wideload Games
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...-to-games-team (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/disney-adds-bungie-co-founder-wideload-to-games-team)

Funcom to cut 20% of workforce
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...t-of-workforce (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/funcom-to-cut-20-percent-of-workforce)
Title: Games Industry Death Watch Q4 2009
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 06, 2010, 06:02:52 PM
Quote from: October 2009
Transmission Games lays off 20
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...-staff-members (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/transmission-games-lays-off-over-20-staff-members)

Ubisoft acquires Trackmania developer Nadeo
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...eveloper-nadeo (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/ubisoft-acquires-trackmania-developer-nadeo)

Activision lays off 30 from 7 studios
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...ased-7-studios (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/activision-lays-off-30-from-newly-purchased-7-studios)

Activision closes Shaba Studios
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...tudios-closure (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/activision-confirms-shaba-studios-closure)

Optimus acquires Witcher developer in CD Projekt takeover
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...ojekt-takeover (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/optimus-finalises-cd-projekt-takeover)

Idol Minds lays off ~26
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...it-by-lay-offs (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/pain-developer-hit-by-lay-offs)

Transmission Games closes
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...s-doors-report (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/transmission-games-closes-doors-report)

Slipgate Ironworks lays off ~50
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...gate-ironworks (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/gazillion-lays-off-staff-at-romeros-slipgate-ironworks)
Quote from: November 2009
Square-Enix/Taito/Eidos cuts 10% globally
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...und-10-percent (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/square-enix-global-headcount-reduction-around-10-percent)

EA Acquires Playfish
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...sh-acquisition (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/ea-confirms-USD300m-playfish-acquisition)

EA to layoff 1,500 by April 2010, including "several studio closures"
Tiburon, Blackbox, Redwood Shores, Mythic reportedly affected
http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/new...hp?story=25999 (http://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=25999)

Playdom acquires Green Path and Trippert Labs
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...-trippert-labs (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/playdom-acquires-green-patch-and-trippert-labs)

Pandemic closes
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...-studios-today (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/report-ea-will-close-pandemic-studios-today)

Krome faces unspecified number of layoffs
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...e-studio-krome (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/staff-layed-off-at-aussie-studio-krome)
Quote from: December 2009
Fuzzeyes lays off majority of staff
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...ority-of-staff (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/fuzzyeyes-studio-lays-off-majority-of-staff)

Threewave studio enters reorganization
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...nisation-phase (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/threewave-enters-reorganisation-phase)

Rumor: Apsyr cuts staff by over 50%
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...ver-50-percent (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/rumour-aspyr-media-cuts-staff-by-over-50-percent)

SCEA drops 30 QA jobs
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...dates-qa-group (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/scea-consolidates-qa-group)

Paradox Interactive acquires AGEOD
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...eveloper-ageod (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/paradox-interactive-acquires-strategy-developer-ageod)

Oberon Media lays off 100
http://www.gamesindustry.biz/article...-off-100-staff (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/casual-games-firm-oberon-media-lays-off-100-staff)/quote]

Compiled by Dr. Mario Kart of Penny-Arcade Forums (http://forums.penny-arcade.com/showpost.php?p=13038018&postcount=1677)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on January 06, 2010, 06:54:11 PM
AN EXCITING RACE, FOLKS.

It's like watching a domino rally.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: King of Twitch on January 06, 2010, 06:58:30 PM
I'm printing this out and dancing on it!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Ymeegod on January 06, 2010, 07:19:28 PM
Dropping QA testers isn't a big deal since it's been done like that for 20+ years that I know of.  Once a product is shipped the testers really don't much to do if the team doesn't already have a build of another game ready so why keep them on payroll?

Interesting list anyhow.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 06, 2010, 08:07:27 PM
We can also use this thread to track the
GAMES INDUSTRY DEATH WATCH 2010
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Peachylala on January 06, 2010, 08:14:16 PM
I second that.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: nickmitch on January 06, 2010, 08:37:41 PM
Must be all the piracy.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Peachylala on January 06, 2010, 09:57:17 PM
Must be all the overstuffed egos.
Sounds much better.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: stevey on January 06, 2010, 11:15:17 PM
I wouldn't mind at all if all the listed companies completely disappeared.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: broodwars on January 06, 2010, 11:34:40 PM
I wouldn't mind at all if all the listed companies completely disappeared.

Given that those companies make up most of the 3rd parties (certainly the major players, anyway), that's a foolish sentiment.  As I stated in another topic, there needs to be healthy competition in the industry to keep it fresh and interesting.  You don't want the entire industry consolidated into a couple companies that never have to evolve their craft because there's no one challenging them.

That's certainly a disheartening list, especially EA's because they cut their jobs in precisely the places where I had hoped to get rehired a few months ago.  It was certainly delayed, but the recession definitely hit the industry hard last year.  Here's hoping it rebounds this year.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Kairon on January 06, 2010, 11:38:11 PM
Doesn't EA work in cycles though? It seems like they've been firing-and-rehiring every year for the past couple years, but I might not have been paying close attention.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: broodwars on January 06, 2010, 11:40:59 PM
Doesn't EA work in cycles though? It seems like they've been firing-and-rehiring every year for the past couple years, but I might not have been paying close attention.

They like to offer temporary contract positions, which usually cover the duration of a given project and offer no benefits.  Then they can either lay you off when they're short on work (which is what happened to me), or they can simply let your contract expire.  That's how it is on the bottom-end, anyway.  I couldn't guess how jobs higher up the chain work.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: ThePerm on January 07, 2010, 03:54:17 AM
none of those companies have Hiroshi Yamauch style execs, people who go with their gut..those guys use focus groups and third party demographic studies, and all the other bullshit thats ruining the game industry, The only odd one on the list is Factor 5, who really just made a bad mistake teaming with Brash to publish, spening ungodly amount of money ps3 deving, ditching their established fanbase....things would have been different if they went with ea as a publisher or something. Square doesn't have too many employees so if they cut 10 percent they are not cutting too many.

I wouldn't mind at all if all the listed companies completely disappeared.

Given that those companies make up most of the 3rd parties (certainly the major players, anyway), that's a foolish sentiment.

other then square/enix, and ubisoft(who isn't failing on the list, as they are aquiring other companies) i don't buy alot of games from those companies. Its usually Nintendo/Capcom/Konami/ubisoft/square for me. Sega is sometimes a potential purchase, but they have been made of fail for a while now.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: KDR_11k on January 07, 2010, 04:51:51 AM
I wouldn't mind at all if all the listed companies completely disappeared.

Given that those companies make up most of the 3rd parties (certainly the major players, anyway), that's a foolish sentiment.  As I stated in another topic, there needs to be healthy competition in the industry to keep it fresh and interesting.  You don't want the entire industry consolidated into a couple companies that never have to evolve their craft because there's no one challenging them.

You won't see gaming die out, anyone with a modicum of skill can make a simple game and it evolves from there. If major publishers die out new companies sprout in that vacuum.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Chozo Ghost on January 07, 2010, 06:11:58 AM
Nintendo is one company name I don't see on the endangered species list. Most of those names on there are either the competition (Sony/MS), or companies that have given the Wii the shaft or treated it like a toilet to dump garbage games on. So to me this seems like poetic justice that they are now struggling.

Ignoring the market leader is a terrible policy, and when they die off it will be thanks to gaming Darwinism.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Peachylala on January 07, 2010, 12:27:12 PM
I wouldn't mind at all if all the listed companies completely disappeared.

Given that those companies make up most of the 3rd parties (certainly the major players, anyway), that's a foolish sentiment.  As I stated in another topic, there needs to be healthy competition in the industry to keep it fresh and interesting.
Fresh and interesting? Super Mario Galaxy, Wii Sports Resort, No More Heroes.
Fresh and interesting? Bioshock, it's sequal, Team Fortress 2, Half Life 2.
Fresh and interesting? Indie games, Wii Ware, DSiWare, Xbox Live Arcade games (some of them)
 
What a majority of third parties find fresh and interesting, including the fan bases that dump their cash on them?
HD grafiks with bloom lighting, brown shading, REALISM, FPS, overhype, and my ever favorite plot device: nanomachines.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on January 07, 2010, 01:05:04 PM
Healthy competition is good, but we're not really SEEING that, are we?  The competitors were once healthy, but competition wasn't exactly healthy (stale, stagnant, complacent).  Consequently, the competitors aren't healthy, and given the business sense they've demonstrated, their lack of health is adversely affecting their ability to compete.

Not stepping up means they can GTFO, or simply die-out.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: broodwars on January 07, 2010, 01:47:06 PM
Ignoring the market leader is a terrible policy, and when they die off it will be thanks to gaming Darwinism.

It isn't a terrible policy when core Wii gamers largely don't buy games on the console that aren't Nintendo-made, and the expanded audience don't buy games more than once or twice a year at all.  Somewhere along the line, 3rd parties have to cut their losses and just stop attempting to throw games at the wall that is the fickle Nintendo fanbase in the faint hope of finding something that satisfies their unsatisfiable wishes.  We can quibble about the 3rd party games not necessarily being what we want on Wii (which is a perfectly valid complaint), but Nintendo gamers not buying 3rd party games is a problem going back to the N64 era.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Chozo Ghost on January 07, 2010, 02:13:14 PM
Ignoring the market leader is a terrible policy, and when they die off it will be thanks to gaming Darwinism.

It isn't a terrible policy when core Wii gamers largely don't buy games on the console that aren't Nintendo-made, and the expanded audience don't buy games more than once or twice a year at all.  Somewhere along the line, 3rd parties have to cut their losses and just stop attempting to throw games at the wall that is the fickle Nintendo fanbase in the faint hope of finding something that satisfies their unsatisfiable wishes.  We can quibble about the 3rd party games not necessarily being what we want on Wii (which is a perfectly valid complaint), but Nintendo gamers not buying 3rd party games is a problem going back to the N64 era.

The Wii audience isn't fickle. We simply demand more than crappy Rail Shooters. When have the 3rd parties delivered what we actually want? They did with RE4 and you can't tell me that game didn't sell well. Another game is No More Heroes and that game wasn't a rail shooter, and it apparently did well enough to warrant a sequel.

So we aren't fickle. We just don't want garbage. I suspect the PS3/360 would reject rail shooters too.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Urkel on January 07, 2010, 03:38:53 PM
I suspect the PS3/360 would reject rail shooters too.

They did. Time Crisis 4 was a big floppo. ZOMG THAT MEANS THERE'S NO MARKET FOR CORE GAMES ON PS3!!!!!!
 
 
But the worst is behind the industry. I'm sure all the games the publishers had no faith in selling during a crowded holiday season will do much better during a crowded first quarter.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: oohhboy on January 07, 2010, 11:14:02 PM
Time Crisis 4 wasn't that good of a game in the first place, so no real surprise there. What I am really surprised about is the lack of shooter ports from the arcades. Stuff like that on the Wii would almost be free money. Sure they can't sell that at full price, but at a suitably budget price, I would at very least eat they up like crazy.

I was expecting a flood of arcade rail shooters, but it has been pretty shallow.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 07, 2010, 11:28:25 PM
3rd parties are apparently blind to the obvious and allergic to easy money.

I've been asking for at the minimum a Point-Blank Arcade -> WiiWare Port since forever.

HotD came, but no Time Crisis or Virtua Cop compilation.
Those might've sold like hotcakes at $20 a pop, and it was a minimal investment title for properties that are just collecting dust on the digital shelf.

But instead of investing a few months on converting code and assets to make some really easy money, I guess we can just lay off 20% of our staff and sell our company out of a desperate need for cash....
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: SixthAngel on January 08, 2010, 12:07:19 AM
Why does it seem Suda 51 is the only company that can actually make a decent game with a low budget.

He is making a sequel to a game that had sales many other games would consider bad, especially HD games.  He was extremely happy with the sales and I was extremely happy with the game.

I really want to know why anyone can't copy his production method.  They don't have to make a niche game like him but they could really use the ability to make a decent game cheap.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Kairon on January 08, 2010, 12:13:01 AM
Why does it seem Suda 51 is the only company that can actually make a decent game with a low budget.

He is making a sequel to a game that had sales many other games would consider bad, especially HD games.  He was extremely happy with the sales and I was extremely happy with the game.

I really want to know why anyone can't copy his production method.  They don't have to make a niche game like him but they could really use the ability to make a decent game cheap.

Apparently Grasshopper studios has a lot of experience making their games on a cheap budget. I heard somewhere that they supplement their income by contributing work to other games and studios too, like in music.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Chozo Ghost on January 08, 2010, 12:18:05 AM
The point of being a company is making a profit, so seeing all these companies shooting themselves in the foot by investing in expensive HD games that flop or have only a slim profit margin doesn't make any sense.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: NWR_Lindy on January 08, 2010, 12:53:57 AM
I'd remove the Zenimax/id Software merger from this "death list".  id allowed themselves to be purchased by Zenimax because they wanted their publishing muscle and they wanted their games to be published by one company.  It wasn't because they were struggling financially...id is completely solvent.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 08, 2010, 01:06:36 AM
I didn't make the list, but I'd argue that if id was doing better they could have built their own publishing and not needed to be bought out to take advantage of someone else's.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: SixthAngel on January 08, 2010, 02:04:51 AM
Apparently Grasshopper studios has a lot of experience making their games on a cheap budget. I heard somewhere that they supplement their income by contributing work to other games and studios too, like in music.

They make extra money with music in case a game flops which is good but it doesn't fund their other projects.  They need to make them cheap so they can make some money.  They do have experience as you said and other developers need to learn from them.  Maybe its the huge budget mindset that seems to permeate every title that companies consider worthwhile.  Developers need to be happy with parts of their game being "good enough."

I agree with BlacknMild.  ID never needed some huge publisher's resources before.  It seems they chose to be bought because the new expenses and retail realities make having such a partner extremely, extremely desirable if not a necessity.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: KDR_11k on January 08, 2010, 07:56:33 AM
I didn't make the list, but I'd argue that if id was doing better they could have built their own publishing and not needed to be bought out to take advantage of someone else's.

The founders said they were tired of worrying about all the business details and decided to sell the company to let someone else worry about that.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: ShyGuy on January 08, 2010, 08:22:58 AM
Carmack is a nerd's nerd. He just wants to play with his rocket ships and 3D engines.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 08, 2010, 11:50:24 AM
and if they had the money they could have expanded their company and started their own little nerd camp to handle all the publishing details.

He can make whatever excuses he wants, but the bottom line would still be he sold his company and is no longer in control. If was doing really well, then he could have bought Zenimax and had the same thing, yet retain as much control as he wants at any time he wants it. Excuses, excuses, excuses. the argument would still stand.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Chozo Ghost on January 08, 2010, 02:05:06 PM
Too bad Nintendo didn't buy them out. I'm sure they would have been happy to handle all the publishing and business details.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 08, 2010, 02:43:38 PM
Too bad Nintendo didn't buy them out. I'm sure they would have been happy to handle all the publishing and business details.

But they also would have handled all the creative control and game details too.

Mushroom KingDOOM!!!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: broodwars on January 08, 2010, 03:00:33 PM
Why does it seem Suda 51 is the only company that can actually make a decent game with a low budget.

Suda 51 has yet to make a decent game on any budget, but that's just my opinion.   ;)

Obviously he's not seeing much of a profit considering all his complaints that the Wii audience wasn't buying his games (which in this case I blame on Suda 51 being an incompetent video game director of a niche company more than I do the Wii audience), so he's defecting to the HD consoles from here on out after NMH2 comes out.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 08, 2010, 03:12:20 PM
Well if he had to supplement his companies income by doing music for other companies just to produce Wii games, then how is he gonna survive if his games only sell as much on the HD consoles at 2-3x the cost to make?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: NWR_DrewMG on January 08, 2010, 04:45:38 PM
People losing their job is awesome. 
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on January 08, 2010, 04:57:41 PM
The world would be happier if no one competed.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Chozo Ghost on January 08, 2010, 05:22:06 PM
The world would be happier if no one competed.

I believe what you are suggesting is called Communism. From a video game point of view, that did give the world Tetris.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on January 08, 2010, 05:27:34 PM
Tetris wasn't shovelware, tho.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: broodwars on January 08, 2010, 05:34:31 PM
The world would be happier if no one competed.

I believe what you are suggesting is called Communism. From a video game point of view, that did give the world Tetris.

And Missile Command, from a certain point of view.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Stratos on January 08, 2010, 05:36:06 PM
Why does it seem Suda 51 is the only company that can actually make a decent game with a low budget.

Suda 51 has yet to make a decent game on any budget, but that's just my opinion.   ;)

Obviously he's not seeing much of a profit considering all his complaints that the Wii audience wasn't buying his games (which in this case I blame on Suda 51 being an incompetent video game director of a niche company more than I do the Wii audience), so he's defecting to the HD consoles from here on out after NMH2 comes out.

I thought that article turned out to be mistranslated? Or was the core message still intact after corrections?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: broodwars on January 08, 2010, 05:36:55 PM
Why does it seem Suda 51 is the only company that can actually make a decent game with a low budget.

Suda 51 has yet to make a decent game on any budget, but that's just my opinion.   ;)

Obviously he's not seeing much of a profit considering all his complaints that the Wii audience wasn't buying his games (which in this case I blame on Suda 51 being an incompetent video game director of a niche company more than I do the Wii audience), so he's defecting to the HD consoles from here on out after NMH2 comes out.

I thought that article turned out to be mistranslated? Or was the core message still intact after corrections?

Dunno.  That's the first I've heard of that being a possible mistranslation.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Stratos on January 08, 2010, 05:52:34 PM
Well he asked some of the questions I would have asked and I like Suda's answers.

Quote from: 1up
1UP:You mentioned once that No More Heroes 2 would be the last game in theseries on Wii. Have you done any experiments on what it might be likeon another platform, especially with the new motion controllers thathave been announced for other systems?

GS: Actually,I answered differently, and it may have been misinterpreted. What Iwanted to say was, looking at the Wii, I think No More Heroes 2 willprobably be the last iteration for this current platform. But there'sprobably going to be a "Wii 2" or other next-gen system from Nintendoat some point, so I was saying that I would want to do another game inthe series on the next Nintendo platform.

Hooray!  I was worried, this is great news!  ;D

This is what I was referring it as mistranslated.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 12, 2010, 04:04:43 AM
Study: Industry hit by 11,500 layoffs since 2008 (http://www.develop-online.net/news/33622/Study-Industry-hit-by-11500-layoffs-since-late-2008)
Quote
Study: Industry hit by 11,500 layoffs since 2008
by Rob Crossley

New research also tallies ‘record number of studio closures’

The global game industry has been hit by as many as 11,500 job losses since late 2008, a new study suggests.

Research by entertainment analyst group M2 Research says that “the final count for layoffs since the economic meltdown in late 2008 reached 11,488 worldwide, with the majority of the losses coming in 2009.”

The study has identified staff redundancies from 95 individual studios, adding that 52 of the affected studios were situated in the US.

M2 adds that the majority of layoffs come at “studio level”, with QA staff often being the first to go.


The analysis group adds that 2009 saw a ‘record number’ of studio closures, including 3D Realms (pictured), various Midway studios and EA’s Pandemic Studios.

Specifically, the research claims that it found 18 studio closures last year – a total number which, on appearance, suggests that the study may have missed a few closures.

The study adds, however, that more studios had filed for bankruptcy and went up for sale.

A large portion of layoffs seems to have come from projects and companies that had difficulty ‘retooling’ for current-gen consoles, the study adds.

“Aside from the cost of retooling, others were so focused on their retooling efforts they weren't able to see the changes in the market and the impact things like digital distribution, casual, and social gaming was starting to have on the market.”
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Stratos on January 12, 2010, 04:27:56 AM
It's just not economical to spends years 'retooling' and making game engines without something else on the table to make a profit.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 12, 2010, 04:40:27 AM
Whats even more retarded is that they didn't really need to "re-tool" when it came to the Wii and that was kinda the point of Nintendo doing what they did.

Things were getting too expensive too quickly and Nintendo decided to do what was sensible and slow the escalation of cost vs benefit down. Most of these developers decided to ignore that gesture and are now they're either closing their doors or putting someone else's logo on it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: Peachylala on January 12, 2010, 11:09:47 AM
The glory of greedy, ignorant egos.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on January 12, 2010, 11:57:14 AM
Most of the developers ignored the Cube, so it's no wonder that many were starting from scratch.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: SixthAngel on January 12, 2010, 10:41:21 PM
Things were getting too expensive too quickly and Nintendo decided to do what was sensible and slow the escalation of cost vs benefit down. Most of these developers decided to ignore that gesture and are now they're either closing their doors or putting someone else's logo on it.

It is ridiculous how developers seemed to entirely forget that they have to make money on their games.

Is there no single person at any company who could say "You know with these huge expenses we either need to sell more games than ever before or simply never make a game that doesn't meet expectations."?  Why is Nintendo pretty much the only company that realized this?  Isn't this a basic analysis that companies have to show their publishers or stockholders?  Final Fantasy is the perfect example, it needs to sell significantly more than previous versions to break even with a lower install base.

With all the 360/ps3 games delayed because of MW2 I get the feeling there is going to be a bloodbath this year for developers.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 12, 2010, 10:57:31 PM
And we''ll be right here to record the events for the history books.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 13, 2010, 04:37:57 AM
Industry Death Watch 2010 Starts Here:

Our first story of 2010?

Warner lays off staff at three studios (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/warner-lays-off-staff-at-three-studios)
Quote
Warner Bros. has cut an unspecified number of staff at three of its studios in the US.

F.E.A.R. 2 team Monolith, The Suffering developer Surreal Software and Snowblind Studios are all affected by the cuts.

"We are committed to growing Warner Bros. in the game space and will be retaining robust teams in our Seattle studios," said the company in a prepared statement.

"We have been moving towards sharing certain resources across the studios and have also been reallocating resources to align talent with our development needs. Unfortunately, we had a few too many resources in certain functions and some positions were eliminated in this process. Our plan is to continually review staffing needs and as future projects evolve we would expect to see the studios grow."

Warner acquired Snowblind just under a year ago adding it to its in-house development team. Surreal Software was picked up as part of the acquisition of bankrupt publisher Midway.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on January 13, 2010, 12:12:58 PM
lol "growth"

How 'bout some cheaper-to-produce Wii games instead?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2009
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on January 13, 2010, 01:55:40 PM
When will you start referring it to Death Watch 2010?  Is there a cutoff point between the posts?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 13, 2010, 02:01:01 PM
I'll change it right now.
meant to do that the day I posted it :)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Urkel on January 13, 2010, 03:11:33 PM
No layoffs yet, but for a look into the future:
 
Red Dead Redemption will need to sell 5 million copies to break even (http://www.joystiq.com/2010/01/12/sources-red-dead-redemption-development-in-trouble)
 
Wow.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 13, 2010, 03:17:51 PM
No layoffs yet, but for a look into the future:
 
Red Dead Redemption will need to sell 5 million copies to break even (http://www.joystiq.com/2010/01/12/sources-red-dead-redemption-development-in-trouble)
 
Wow.
Damn. they better smear some vaseline on that and release it on the Wii.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on January 13, 2010, 04:32:32 PM
Industry Death Watch 2010 Starts Here:

Our first story of 2010?

Warner lays off staff at three studios (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/warner-lays-off-staff-at-three-studios)
Quote
Warner Bros. has cut an unspecified number of staff at three of its studios in the US.

F.E.A.R. 2 team Monolith, The Suffering developer Surreal Software and Snowblind Studios are all affected by the cuts.

"We are committed to growing Warner Bros. in the game space and will be retaining robust teams in our Seattle studios," said the company in a prepared statement.

"We have been moving towards sharing certain resources across the studios and have also been reallocating resources to align talent with our development needs. Unfortunately, we had a few too many resources in certain functions and some positions were eliminated in this process. Our plan is to continually review staffing needs and as future projects evolve we would expect to see the studios grow."

Warner acquired Snowblind just under a year ago adding it to its in-house development team. Surreal Software was picked up as part of the acquisition of bankrupt publisher Midway.

"Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and Sesame Workshop Announce Exclusive Worldwide Publishing Agreement for Sesame Street Videogames"
http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/warner-bros-interactive-entertainment-and,1118391.shtml

WARNER BROS.
-committed to growth-
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on January 13, 2010, 09:07:27 PM
An M rated seasame street platformer would be cool.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on January 13, 2010, 09:12:32 PM
Oh, I can just imagine all the new memes we can create this year.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on January 13, 2010, 09:14:56 PM
Industry Death Watch 2010 Starts Here:

Our first story of 2010?

Warner lays off staff at three studios (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/warner-lays-off-staff-at-three-studios)
Quote
Warner Bros. has cut an unspecified number of staff at three of its studios in the US.

F.E.A.R. 2 team Monolith, The Suffering developer Surreal Software and Snowblind Studios are all affected by the cuts.

"We are committed to growing Warner Bros. in the game space and will be retaining robust teams in our Seattle studios," said the company in a prepared statement.

"We have been moving towards sharing certain resources across the studios and have also been reallocating resources to align talent with our development needs. Unfortunately, we had a few too many resources in certain functions and some positions were eliminated in this process. Our plan is to continually review staffing needs and as future projects evolve we would expect to see the studios grow."

Warner acquired Snowblind just under a year ago adding it to its in-house development team. Surreal Software was picked up as part of the acquisition of bankrupt publisher Midway.

"Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and Sesame Workshop Announce Exclusive Worldwide Publishing Agreement for Sesame Street Videogames"
http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/warner-bros-interactive-entertainment-and,1118391.shtml (http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/warner-bros-interactive-entertainment-and,1118391.shtml)

WARNER BROS.
-committed to growth-

Hey now, no mocking the muppets (and the Sesame Street gang are muppets)!  I was never big into Sesame Street, but there are certainly worse things for WB to work on than a game from that franchise.  Best of all for some of you, that's practically guaranteed to show up on the Wii.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: EasyCure on January 13, 2010, 09:26:07 PM
Industry Death Watch 2010 Starts Here:

Our first story of 2010?

Warner lays off staff at three studios (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/warner-lays-off-staff-at-three-studios)
Quote
Warner Bros. has cut an unspecified number of staff at three of its studios in the US.

F.E.A.R. 2 team Monolith, The Suffering developer Surreal Software and Snowblind Studios are all affected by the cuts.

"We are committed to growing Warner Bros. in the game space and will be retaining robust teams in our Seattle studios," said the company in a prepared statement.

"We have been moving towards sharing certain resources across the studios and have also been reallocating resources to align talent with our development needs. Unfortunately, we had a few too many resources in certain functions and some positions were eliminated in this process. Our plan is to continually review staffing needs and as future projects evolve we would expect to see the studios grow."

Warner acquired Snowblind just under a year ago adding it to its in-house development team. Surreal Software was picked up as part of the acquisition of bankrupt publisher Midway.

"Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment and Sesame Workshop Announce Exclusive Worldwide Publishing Agreement for Sesame Street Videogames"
http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/warner-bros-interactive-entertainment-and,1118391.shtml (http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/warner-bros-interactive-entertainment-and,1118391.shtml)

WARNER BROS.
-committed to growth-

Hey now, no mocking the muppets (and the Sesame Street gang are muppets)!  I was never big into Sesame Street, but there are certainly worse things for WB to work on than a game from that franchise.  Best of all for some of you, that's practically guaranteed to show up on the Wii.

An M rated seasame street platformer would be cool.

Not if its rated M :P
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on January 13, 2010, 09:27:42 PM
Warner would probably give it the same matoor Looney Tunes makeover.

Eat that, damage controllers.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 13, 2010, 09:55:00 PM
An M rated seasame street platformer would be cool.

      Imagine: Sesame Streetz
(http://i49.tinypic.com/f39sw6.jpg)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: EasyCure on January 13, 2010, 11:08:33 PM
photoshop some money signs in there and change the font to read

$esame Streetz

thanks.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on January 13, 2010, 11:25:43 PM
While they're at it, I want to see a Mr. Roger's video game, and what ever happened to that Bob Ross game we were promised way back in 2006???
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: SixthAngel on January 14, 2010, 12:21:46 AM
No layoffs yet, but for a look into the future:
 
Red Dead Redemption will need to sell 5 million copies to break even (http://www.joystiq.com/2010/01/12/sources-red-dead-redemption-development-in-trouble)
 
Wow.

Did GTA4 even cost so much to make?  Holy crap.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on January 14, 2010, 12:37:28 AM
Something's gonna break evenly, all right.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Urkel on January 14, 2010, 04:23:08 AM
It seems they updated the story. Now it will only need to sell 4 million copies to break even.
 
Phew! I was worried there for a second.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on January 14, 2010, 04:35:07 AM
What's a million copies among friends?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 14, 2010, 06:22:32 AM
Here's an article or two that should be pointed at everytime we see a non-Wii developer shutting down shop.

Study: Average dev costs as high as $28m (http://www.develop-online.net/news/33625/Study-Average-dev-cost-as-high-as-28m)
Quote
New research suggests development budgets are soaring dangerously fast

The average development budget for a multiplatform next-gen game is $18-$28 million, according to new data.

A study by entertainment analyst group M2 Research also puts development costs for single-platform projects at an average of $10 million.


The figures themselves may not be too surprising, with high-profile games often breaking the $40 million barrier.

Polyphony’s Gran Turismo 5 budget is said to be hovering around the $60 million mark, while Modern Warfare 2's budget was said to be as high as $50 million.

The new figures put into focus concerns often fired out by the development community.

Robert Walsh, the CEO of Australian outfit Krome, recently told Develop that game budgets are rising at a frightening pace.

“I think that’s one thing that the press, to a certain extent, is forgetting,” said Walsh in an interview.

“They’re saying sales have increased over ten percent since last year or whatever; I mean, dev costs have probably doubled or tripled in the console transition.”

Walsh’s Krome studio has recently announced layoffs across all three of its studios, citing poor sales that – presumably – failed to satisfy investments.

sourced article: http://wandameloni.snappages.com/the-brief-2009-ups-and-downs.htm (http://wandameloni.snappages.com/the-brief-2009-ups-and-downs.htm)
Quote
ROI is King
At a development level the video game industry has been in shakeup mode for some time, which is what ultimately triggered these layoffs. The overall cost of developing games for the current generation of hardware has become increasingly difficult to maintain, leaving most traditional game developers and publishers stretched well beyond their means.

Prior console generations had development costs ranging between $3-5 million per platform. M2 Research estimates more recent development costs for these 7th generation consoles to have soared, with the average costs running $10 million for one platform and $18-$28 million for multiple platforms.

Casual and social games on the other hand can range from $30k - $300k, taking only 6 months to develop. Since these games are online, they also don't incur the heavy costs associated with packaging and marketing materials that are necessary to reach the retail channels.

Mobile and iPhone games have much less production costs associated with them, ranging from $5k - $20K per title. Chris Ulm, CEO of Appy Entertainment, acknowledges, "Mobile game budgets depend on the game and the developers that are putting it together. The budget for a game can go from $5k to $100k. To put it in perspective, ports for full fledged iPhone games (like FaceFighter) can run anywhere from $15K to $22K. The average development time for a game like Zombie Pizza is about 4 months."

But Wii isn't HD so we can't afford to support it......
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on January 14, 2010, 06:47:17 AM
I honestly don't understand all the obsession and hype over HD. I have an HD tv and some channels are in HD, but I just watch whatever I'm interested in and don't really pay too much attention to the picture quality. HD does look better, but I only notice that if I'm paying attention to picture quality, otherwise I don't notice.

So why is everyone so obsessed with it? If we were talking about 3D TV, now that would be something to get excited over...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: SixthAngel on January 14, 2010, 07:54:53 AM
I honestly don't understand all the obsession and hype over HD. I have an HD tv and some channels are in HD, but I just watch whatever I'm interested in and don't really pay too much attention to the picture quality. HD does look better, but I only notice that if I'm paying attention to picture quality, otherwise I don't notice.

So why is everyone so obsessed with it? If we were talking about 3D TV, now that would be something to get excited over...

Thats the thing, everyone is not excited for it.  The last time I looked at research about it(a long time ago),  it said less than half of 360 owners had an hdtv.  It then went on to say how many of the ones that did either didn't know about the function, didn't know how to hook it up correctly, or simply didn't care to buy the cables.  It is a nice bullet point but is overshadowed by many more cares that people have about games.  It is being pushed forward by Sony and Bluray, tv sellers and the tech heads that run many development studios, especially all the pc developers who moved to consoles recently.Don't turn this into some HD war.  I know the future will be full of the tvs, but it is a minor concern for people now.

Remember when you would play previous consoles and pc guys would talk about how they can't play with such low res graphics?  Remember how you were right and so many console players didn't care as long as they liked the games?  Its the same thing.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on January 14, 2010, 12:46:22 PM
Jaggies are mitigated by sitting further from the monitor, as was the case for family TV watching since the mid-1900s.  "Regular" people see content before seeing image quality.  Making a judgement on image quality was usually a nerd thing or a sales/marketing thing.

As more nerds and sociopaths began growing the PC sector, sitting face-planted into their monitors, the outcry for better resolutions accelerated.  They see too much and too little at the same time:  staring at tree bark and not the nice canopies of the forest.  You know they're nuts cuz they're not the people you'd play Wii with standing up.

i'm good at war
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: EasyCure on January 14, 2010, 07:15:27 PM
lol I love pro. Post of the year right there folks!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Kairon on January 14, 2010, 11:35:08 PM
Jaggies are mitigated by sitting further from the monitor, as was the case for family TV watching since the mid-1900s.  "Regular" people see content before seeing image quality.  Making a judgement on image quality was usually a nerd thing or a sales/marketing thing.

As more nerds and sociopaths began growing the PC sector, sitting face-planted into their monitors, the outcry for better resolutions accelerated.  They see too much and too little at the same time:  staring at tree bark and not the nice canopies of the forest.  You know they're nuts cuz they're not the people you'd play Wii with standing up.

i'm good at war

Wait a sec...

Aren't you a videophile yourself Pro?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on January 15, 2010, 12:39:22 AM
I play some Wii games standing up.  Even with other people.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on January 15, 2010, 03:39:18 AM
Jaggies are mitigated by sitting further from the monitor, as was the case for family TV watching since the mid-1900s.  "Regular" people see content before seeing image quality.  Making a judgement on image quality was usually a nerd thing or a sales/marketing thing.

As more nerds and sociopaths began growing the PC sector, sitting face-planted into their monitors, the outcry for better resolutions accelerated.  They see too much and too little at the same time:  staring at tree bark and not the nice canopies of the forest.  You know they're nuts cuz they're not the people you'd play Wii with standing up.

i'm good at war

Wait a sec...

Aren't you a videophile yourself Pro?

I think his demands are more focused at internet video which is usually sub-SD.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NWR_DrewMG on January 15, 2010, 09:01:13 AM
Who cares, as long as the content is good?

Right?

Right?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on January 15, 2010, 04:04:38 PM
It's good until it's overpriced.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on January 16, 2010, 06:32:41 PM
heres my take

team size is way too big. Think this if your game only sells 50,000 copies each at $50 a piece. Thats 2.5 million earned. How big is your staff though?
How big does a staff need to be? i say 2 programmers, 4 artists, 2 designers would be a good SMALL team, but half the money would stay with the company, and actually would go for other costs like printing discs and marketing and ****.  Each employee would get paid a reasonable $156,250(a 2 year period with $78,125 each year). Those are weird numbers though. Thats probably too high a pay at least for some jobs, and that's not accounting for the budget to begin with.

so lets start with a budget of 10 million, now the question is AT THE LEAST how much does the company think of a game they can sell?

give me some numbers and a description i'll tell you how the game should be budgeted/marketed :P We could make this a game.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 16, 2010, 06:48:11 PM
You forgot to factor in overhead.

Like office space and electricity. Dev kits and dental/health plans.
Computers and Executive salaries/bonuses.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on January 16, 2010, 07:37:52 PM
but half the money would stay with the company, and actually would go for other costs like printing discs and marketing and ****...Those are weird numbers though.....and that's not accounting for the budget to begin with.

edit with more weird numbers

Example Budget 2.5 million
half the money goes to 8 employees $1,250,000

the other half goes to costs


$250,000 Development Kits single console (a guess..depends on the console)
$250,000 licensed game engine
$ 67,200 Office space 3600 sq ft 2 years (austin texas)
$ 13,592 High End Computers
$  6,000 bi-yearly electricity
$  3,200 Budget computers
$  3,000 Accessories
------------------------------------------
$592,812



$1,250,000 costs
- $592,812
- $200,000 printing 66,666 discs at $3 a disk(i know each disc prolly costs much less, and they would probably make 

                                              you order $70,000)
---------------------
$457,188 left over for health packages/dental/continuity/execututives


thats a budget of 2.5 million dollars that breaks even selling 50,000 copies at $50 a piece with 8 overpaid

employees, not counting executive pay

a capcom budget
now a capcom game is successful if it sales 250,000 copies(which is the break even for most budgets), which would yield 12.5 million dollars, but a capcom game will have 12-30 people working on it. How much would a budget be if it were to break even?

publishing
250,000 * $3 per disk (again a guess)
--------------------------
$750,000



$250,000 Development Kits single console
$250,000 licensed game engine (which capcom may or may not use)
$ 67,200 Office space 3600 sq ft 2 years (guestimate)
$ 13,592 High End Computers
$  6,000 bi-yearly electricity
$  3,200 Budget computers
$  3,000 Accessories
------------------------------------------
$592,812 overhead


30 non executive employees $80,000 average salary (some are paid more than others)
--------------------------------------
$2,400,000



12,500,000
 2,400,000
   750,000
-  592,812
__________
$8,757,188....which fits if a budget is 10 million

capcom is publisher #14 making $924 million a year (in revenue), they spend $843 million a year on expenses and then make 81 million in net income...they have 1,200 employees

its funny now im reading some stuff on ea...wtf are they doing this year trying to run the company into the ground?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on January 16, 2010, 08:56:41 PM
This is a fun exercise.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 16, 2010, 09:10:16 PM
What about licensing fee per disc sold?
how much does that cost?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on January 16, 2010, 09:18:50 PM
well somewhere or other during the gamecube days i remember an interview saying that discs including licensing and stuff was like $3 per disc, that could be radically different nowadays . It costs like 7cents to make a disc, but there are other stuff attached, plus you have to buy in bulk so you have to worry about that too. Plus there is economy of trade as well. I think cartridges in the n64 days would be like 8-20 dollars a piece which really would make things scary for a publisher.

i remember doing similar calculations way back in the day, considering how much money Nintendo would make publishing on discs compared to what they used to make publishing on cartridges. Around 2000 they were making a billion dollars on n64 games, but it was mostly not profit because of cart costs, they switched which would increase their profit potential, but Gamecube didnt get the install base n64 had, so they were making the same amount of money(with a higher profit margin), with the Wii(and DS) though, which have the installed user base and  they are now making 19 billion a year..printing cash
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on January 17, 2010, 06:06:08 PM
So where in your plan are the steps to fire EA's decision makers?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 17, 2010, 08:57:50 PM
I think every 3rd part company needs to hire an independent Wii consultant.

That way when there is a board meeting and they are deciding to make a multi-platform game but not bring it to the Wii, the Wii Consultant can come in the room and start by shouting "Are you ******* Crazy!!?" then show them the number of Wii sales in December alone and then show pics of Nintendo using $100 bills as toilet paper and napkins.
Then right as security shows up to escort him out of the room, he would tear open his white button down collared work shirt to revel his under shirt that says:
(http://i48.tinypic.com/ru5icp.jpg)
right on the front.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: EasyCure on January 17, 2010, 09:02:43 PM
...under shirt that says:
(http://i48.tinypic.com/ru5icp.jpg)
right on the front.

I need that shirt. I think I'm gonna go get one made this weekend actually..
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on January 17, 2010, 11:40:50 PM
yeah, honestly...it seems that Nintendo and 3rd party execs live in a different dimension. They really do need a Nintendo platform consultant.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Urkel on January 30, 2010, 06:59:34 PM
Sony closes Studio Liverpool. (http://www.wipeoutzone.com/index.php)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on January 30, 2010, 07:05:03 PM
Sony closes Studio Liverpool. (http://www.wipeoutzone.com/index.php)

Looking over their list of games on Wikipedia, the only notable games they ever made were the Lemmings and Wipeout games.  No big loss there.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 30, 2010, 07:30:58 PM
I just read a couple days ago how they were gonna halt some projects and shuffle around some stuff. I guess that is (not so secret )code for something is gonna be shut down soon.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on January 30, 2010, 07:48:02 PM
Sony closes Studio Liverpool. (http://www.wipeoutzone.com/index.php)

Looking over their list of games on Wikipedia, the only notable games they ever made were the Lemmings and Wipeout games.  No big loss there.
Has Sucker Punch and Insomniac lost any staff?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on January 30, 2010, 07:52:06 PM
Sony closes Studio Liverpool. (http://www.wipeoutzone.com/index.php)

Looking over their list of games on Wikipedia, the only notable games they ever made were the Lemmings and Wipeout games.  No big loss there.
Has Sucker Punch and Insomniac lost any staff?

I haven't heard that they have, and I doubt they will considering both companies have both released hit games very recently (and it's a pretty open secret now that Sucker Punch is working on Infamous 2).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on January 31, 2010, 01:18:17 AM
theres a difference between shaking up jobs and outright loosing them,  i forgot to mention right before they dropped those warner jobs i saw soem adds for some jobs at Warner. A lot of the guys at some of these shitty third parties aren't making great games, so a good way to start over again is drop the fat and hire some new people. Maybe these guys will be more competent.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on January 31, 2010, 02:46:00 AM
Lemmings and Wipeout games

I realize that these aren't the devs of the original, classic Lemmings games but some recent shitty sequels but wasn't Wipeout regarded very highly?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on January 31, 2010, 04:48:26 AM
I recall Wipeout being regarded as a good game back in the day but can't think of anything that came out of that series in the last decade that was terribly groundbreaking or relevant. Though I'm only familiar with playing it on PC so maybe it had more clout on Sony or Microsoft consoles.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NWR_insanolord on January 31, 2010, 03:59:09 PM
Wipeout HD is awesome, it's like F-Zero had a baby with the good parts of Mario Kart.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Urkel on January 31, 2010, 06:38:24 PM
As a matter of fairness, might as well report any Wii centric devs that go under, however rare that may be.
 
Deep Silver Vienna (developer of Cursed Mountain) goes under. (http://aussie-nintendo.com/news/21355)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 31, 2010, 07:23:28 PM
As a matter of fairness, might as well report any Wii centric devs that go under, however rare that may be.
 
Deep Silver Vienna (developer of Cursed Mountain) goes under. (http://aussie-nintendo.com/news/21355)

Besides Cursed Mountain, what else have they developed?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on January 31, 2010, 07:37:38 PM
As a matter of fairness, might as well report any Wii centric devs that go under, however rare that may be.
 
Deep Silver Vienna (developer of Cursed Mountain) goes under. (http://aussie-nintendo.com/news/21355)

Besides Cursed Mountain, what else have they developed?

According to the article, Cursed Mountain was that developer's first title.  Being a Wii 3rd party core game, it (naturally) flopped and took the developer with it.

Then again, I'm a core Wii gamer with a love of survival horror and they never made me want their game, so perhaps the game deserved to flop.  :-\   If I remember correctly, it also released in the same window as Metroid Prime Trilogy, another core Wii game that didn't sell.  Perhaps those two ate into each other's sales?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: D_Average on January 31, 2010, 10:53:46 PM
Sony closes Studio Liverpool. (http://www.wipeoutzone.com/index.php)

Looking over their list of games on Wikipedia, the only notable games they ever made were the Lemmings and Wipeout games.  No big loss there.

That's a HUGE loss if they developed Wipeout HD.  They nailed that game.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on January 31, 2010, 11:33:23 PM
broodwars: Metroid Prime Trilogy was a limited release collectors edition set with games people already owned, just with Wii controls (which made the games better). Cursed Mountain was a flawed, though enjoyable, survival horror game.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Deguello on February 01, 2010, 10:41:06 AM
Going back through Deep Silver Vienna's history, they used to be Rockstar Vienna And their last game before being being acquired was the PS2 port of Max Payne 2 or something from 2003.  Then from 2003, apparently they did a little work on Manhunt 2 and then went quiet for a long time until Cursed Mountain.  Lots of the news cites internal struggles in addition to the poor performance of Cursed Mountain.

I get the feeling this developer died around 2005 and took 5 years to realize it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on February 01, 2010, 11:04:56 AM
So basically they pulled a Daikatana?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on February 01, 2010, 11:15:20 AM
The Wii has claimed its first victim. This is what you get when you taken Wii development seriously and expect your games to sell on it.

I wish I was being sarcastic, but sadly that is how it seems to be...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on February 01, 2010, 12:07:04 PM
Would Cursed Mountain really have saved the studio if it had been for the HD systems?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on February 01, 2010, 12:11:10 PM
Would Cursed Mountain really have saved the studio if it had been for the HD systems?

Maybe, considering it could have capitalized on the backlash against RE5 last year for not having any real horror elements anymore.  It certainly would have had an easier time trying to find an audience there.

The problem with the whole "slow burn" phenomenon on Wii is that it only works if your game is extremely low budget (or your studio has deep pockets), because the cash just doesn't come back to the developers quickly enough to deal with upkeep and work on their next project.  And "slow burn" seems to be the only way most games on Wii sell.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Deguello on February 01, 2010, 12:27:30 PM
No, it wouldn't have.  There have been developers that went out of business this generation after selling 3 million copies of a game.

Cursed Mountain was simply too low profile a release, thrown into the horrible atmosphere other third parties created for all of them on the Wii with their shovelware antics, and not advertised or marketed in the least outside of maybe a banner ad.

Which is a shame, because I hear it's pretty good.  One thing to note is that Deep Silver, the publisher itself, is still alive and squarely a PC developer with some ports.  I wonder if the "internal struggles" cited were the result of the bigger publisher simply not caring about the Cursed Mountain project to begin with, essentially leaving this multi-year project out in the cold.

And please, no more comments on what "can" and "can't" sell on the Wii.  RE4 is just like Cursed Mountain and it's a Million seller so...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on February 01, 2010, 12:29:18 PM
I think slow burn means positive word of mouth is the main form of advertising. Games that don't form that won't have a slow burn, they'll go out quickly even if they sold like arse.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on February 01, 2010, 12:32:41 PM
And please, no more comments on what "can" and "can't" sell on the Wii.  RE4 is just like Cursed Mountain and it's a Million seller so...

Except that RE4 is not only part of a very well-known franchise (Resident Evil), but also a port of an exceptionally popular game on 2 other platforms.  I wouldn't use it as a basis for determining anything on Wii.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 01, 2010, 12:45:48 PM
And please, no more comments on what "can" and "can't" sell on the Wii.  RE4 is just like Cursed Mountain and it's a Million seller so...

Except that RE4 is not only part of a very well-known franchise (Resident Evil), but also a port of an exceptionally popular game on 2 other platforms.  I wouldn't use it as a basis for determining anything on Wii.


But it shows that there iswas an audience for that type of game. They might have moved on since then since Cursed Mountain is only other game released that is similar and no one really knew about it. But there was 1million potential customers that would have been interested in this had someone bothered to let them know it existed.

I had to poke and prod NWR about impressions from E3 and then again to eventually get a review, so you know that there really just wasn't any hype surrounding this game from anywhere. It was sent to die and take the studio with it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Urkel on February 01, 2010, 04:47:05 PM
Would Cursed Mountain have sold a decent amount on the HD consoles with the same amount of advertising none and the same limited shipment?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on February 01, 2010, 09:57:33 PM
No.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: D_Average on February 01, 2010, 10:07:36 PM
And please, no more comments on what "can" and "can't" sell on the Wii.  RE4 is just like Cursed Mountain and it's a Million seller so...

Except that RE4 is not only part of a very well-known franchise (Resident Evil), but also a port of an exceptionally popular game on 2 other platforms.  I wouldn't use it as a basis for determining anything on Wii.


But it shows that there iswas an audience for that type of game. They might have moved on since then since Cursed Mountain is only other game released that is similar and no one really knew about it. But there was 1million potential customers that would have been interested in this had someone bothered to let them know it existed.

IMO, the only thing it shows is that Wii gamers were starving for fun after launch.  Looking at the other titles out at the time, it was pretty clear RE4 was the cream of the crop.  Hell, even one year after launch when I finally bought my Wii, I picked it up as there just wasn't much out there for me.  Now, 3+ years after launch, there are plenty of quality titles to choose from for new gamers.  That said, I wouldn't use RE4 as a barometer until the next system launch.  The landscape just isn't the same, not even close.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on February 02, 2010, 12:00:49 AM
Another thing RE4 had in its favor was that it was only $19.99. This price meant that even if you already owned RE4 on the GC or PS2 it wasn't a big deal to grab the improved Wii version with better controls, content, and graphics because of the cheap price. So I think a lot of RE4 Wii purchasers probably already owned or played the games before.

But then again, I see Cursed Mountain on Amazon for only $19.99 so what's the deal? It has great reviews, and it has a great price, so why aren't people buying this? It looks like a great impulse buy. I know advertising for this game was pretty much non-existent, but don't people ever go browse through games and just make a purchase based on reviews? I do that all the time on Amazon, and have grabbed games I never heard of before (including this one). I don't understand why more people don't do that...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 02, 2010, 01:01:06 AM
Because most people already have in mind what they want when they go shopping.
Not to say that that is all they are gonna get while they're out, but they already had in mind what they were leaving the house for.

The majority of consumers are not educated buyers, they are impulse and that is why advertising is necessary if you want to be on the minds of those going out to spend the money.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on February 02, 2010, 04:31:06 AM
Also remember that said games need to be on the freaking shelf for it to become impulse buy material. I can't go browse any electronics section or game store and go 'oh, look, Cursed Mountain is only $20!'.

Yes, it was on my list on Amazon since before it came out, but as others have said, with a limited budget for entertainment some titles just slip to the wayside. Even on your wishlist it is easy to continually pass up a game or miss it if it is near the bottom.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on February 02, 2010, 08:02:06 AM
The majority of consumers are not educated buyers, they are impulse and that is why advertising is necessary if you want to be on the minds of those going out to spend the money.

I'm sorta an impulse buyer too, in that I browse on sites like Amazon and if I see a game with a low price and great reviews I might jump on it then and there.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on February 02, 2010, 03:24:08 PM
Namco Bandai has now posted huge losses for the last 9 months (http://www.destructoid.com/namco-bandai-posts-huge-losses-fires-10-of-its-staff-162332.phtml) and will be firing 10% of its workforce.  I'd like to be sympathetic here, but I'm still waiting for Tales of Vesperia PS3 and Tales of Graces on Wii. And of all the companies abusing DLC, I'd say Namco-Bandai is easily one of the worst (paying real money for in-game level-ups, anyone?). :@
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on February 02, 2010, 03:41:54 PM
beat me to it, I remember Nintendo wanting to buy Bandai a couple of years ago. That is why the merged with Namco..to deflect that. Lets hope Nintendo goes after them, and we can have exclusive Pacman, Tekken and Soul Calibur, and a crapload of Anime licenses.

http://www.gamespot.com/news/6083620.html
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 02, 2010, 04:34:26 PM
Nintendo could easily afford them now.
Looking at Nintendos spread sheet, they probably wish they had let Nintendo atleast become a heavy investor and re-organize their studios to work with the Wii and DS using Nintendo branding and quality assurance.

If by some crazy twist of fate Nintendo did purchase Namdai/Banco, the next Smash Bros would be pretty crazy. I'm not really sure what Nintendo would do with alot of Namco properties besides Pacman & Dig Dug, but VC/Arcade would be getting a huge update.

Tekken and Ridge Racer would probably never be heard from again, while Soul Caliber, Point Blank and Time Crisis might get exactly what they need.

I have no idea what properties Bandai has though. *off to google search*

edit: How big would a Pokemon vs Digimon be?
Or if Nintendo revived Tomagotchi
or Gundam vs Custom Robo
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Ian Sane on February 02, 2010, 05:59:27 PM
Quote
But then again, I see Cursed Mountain on Amazon for only $19.99 so what's the deal? It has great reviews, and it has a great price, so why aren't people buying this? It looks like a great impulse buy.

Why are you saying a game that averaged 68% on Gamerankings got "great reviews"?  It looks like it got some decent reviews, okay reviews and just outright poor reviews.  There are way too many 50% scores for me to not be skeptical.  Great games don't get ANY reviews in that score range.  Cursed Mountain got mixed reviews.  That's an honest assessment.
 
So combine that with the fact that I had no idea this game was even out (I remember it being announced way back but that's it) and of course the game didn't do well.  There's no advertising and the game didn't get good enough reviews to attract attention on it's own merits.  It looks like a mediocre game with no marketing.  It's supposed to bomb.  That means the world still makes sense.
 
As for owning Namco-Bandai, there's enough valuable IP in there that it would be worth it for any company that can afford to do so.  Though I have a feeling if Nintendo bought them Namco would lose it's identity.  Some of Namco's best games feel pretty much NOTHING like a Nintendo game.  I get a feeling instead of Soul Calibur we would get "Nintendo's Soul Calibur" which would not feel right.  Namco reminds me more of Konami, Capcom and Sega.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on February 02, 2010, 06:19:54 PM
As for owning Namco-Bandai, there's enough valuable IP in there that it would be worth it for any company that can afford to do so.  Though I have a feeling if Nintendo bought them Namco would lose it's identity.  Some of Namco's best games feel pretty much NOTHING like a Nintendo game.  I get a feeling instead of Soul Calibur we would get "Nintendo's Soul Calibur" which would not feel right.  Namco reminds me more of Konami, Capcom and Sega.

Yeah, same here.  I'd only be happy with Nintendo buying Namco-Bandai if it meant they got to keep a relative amount of autonomy ala Activision and Blizzard.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on February 02, 2010, 08:33:47 PM
If Nintendo does buy companies they should leave them with a great deal of autonomy, but the two things Nintendo should demand out of them is:

1) Quality, and not shovelware.
2) The games must be exclusive to Nintendo hardware

But other than those conditions Nintendo should let them do whatever they want.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on February 02, 2010, 10:43:31 PM
BUY PLATINUM NINTENDO.

I WANT AN RE4 GAME FROM THEM AGAIN.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 02, 2010, 10:53:10 PM
Buy them with promises of HD production in 2 years time.
Full funding and Nintendo magic can be all theirs.

But tea tables must be present in every room that development is taking place.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on February 02, 2010, 11:02:12 PM
I'm sure Mikami won't mind.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Luigi Dude on February 03, 2010, 12:49:13 PM
Add another one to the list.

http://www.mcvuk.com/news/37419/Take-Two-to-drop-20-of-global-workforce (http://www.mcvuk.com/news/37419/Take-Two-to-drop-20-of-global-workforce)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: vudu on February 03, 2010, 01:46:29 PM
I'd only be happy with Nintendo buying Namco-Bandai if it meant they got to keep a relative amount of autonomy ala Activision and Blizzard.
You want Nintendo to purchase a company that just posted a huge loss and then let them keep doing what they've been doing?  That makes no sense.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on February 03, 2010, 01:51:06 PM
I'd only be happy with Nintendo buying Namco-Bandai if it meant they got to keep a relative amount of autonomy ala Activision and Blizzard.
You want Nintendo to purchase a company that just posted a huge loss and then let them keep doing what they've been doing?  That makes no sense.

Like I said, a relative amount of autonomy.  Nintendo keeps them in line and makes sure that they don't do something stupid that will cripple the company, but they don't put a stranglehold on their creative output either.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 03, 2010, 01:58:17 PM
Did you guys see the financial report from Namco?

I'm no expert on reading those things, but it looked like they actually made more money(~Double) from their 9 Wii games that they did on their 5 HD games that I will assume were multi-system ports and not 5 separate PS3 and 5 separate 360 games.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on February 03, 2010, 02:23:22 PM
Fact
 
Tales of Re-Phonia: Dawn of Pokemon sold more on the Wii then Tales of HDPhonia (Vesperia) on 360... in North America. Exactly numbers? Not too sure.
 
Marta for Super Smash Bros. Sequal plz.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 03, 2010, 09:49:13 PM
THQ Cuts 60 Jobs As Rainbow, Juice Rebrand, Refocus On Digital (http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/27090/THQ_Cuts_60_Jobs_As_Rainbow_Juice_Rebrand_Refocus_On_Digital.php)
Developers of Deadly Creatures and Juiced
Quote
Publisher THQ announced it would be refocusing its Juice Games and Rainbow Studios on digital distribution -- and cutting 60 jobs as part of the strategy.

Juice Games will now be known as THQ Digital Studios Warrington, while Rainbow will be re-titled THQ Digital Studios Phoenix. According to the publisher, the studios' core mandate will now be to create digitally-distributed games based both on owned and new IP.

The first of these will begin releasing in 2011; the two studios are developing downloadable games for Xbox Live Arcade, PlayStation Network, iPhone and iPad. THQ says it will still publish its MX vs ATV sport racing franchise under the Rainbow Studios brand.

Notably, the publisher also says the studios will be tasked with implementing "a portfolio-wide community platform to connect consumers to all of THQ’s core games using proprietary technology developed by THQ Digital Studios Warrington."

"Consumers are increasingly looking for deeper engagement with their favorite entertainment experiences," says THQ executive VP Danny Bilson. "They also want to enjoy games and entertainment via convenient social and portable platforms that suit their lifestyle."

Bilson explains: "We plan to address these needs through a rich offering of content distributed across digital platforms, based both on all of our major core brands as well as new intellectual properties."
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on February 03, 2010, 09:57:10 PM
People losing their jobs is sad.

THQ losing said jobs because of HD budgets/crappy economy is divine justice. God I'm such an ass for saying that.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on February 03, 2010, 10:03:54 PM
People losing their jobs is sad.

THQ losing said jobs because of HD budgets/crappy economy is divine justice. God I'm such an ass for saying that.

Yes, let's blame the HD consoles for this.   ::)   I'm sure the fact that THQ has produced nothing but crap for years (at least, that's how it looks looking over their list of games on Wikipedia) had absolutely nothing to do with it, and that if they published that same crap on Wii it would be all rainbows and butterflies.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on February 03, 2010, 10:29:04 PM
Everyone blames Nintendo for their problems, I blame HD.

Neither of us can be right, but I'm just a forum user. They are companies that need money and have to pay workers.

And those rainbows and butterflies need advertising.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on February 04, 2010, 02:49:45 AM
jobs cut at Rainbow? :P I see opportunity there :P
I've been eyeing that place for a bit, but they never quite have jobs posted. Although my sites are usually set on better companies. My portfolio has made headway in the last 4 weeks since I've gotten in bed with the source engine.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on February 04, 2010, 01:01:08 PM
Wherever you go Perm, spread the Nintendo love!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: D_Average on February 05, 2010, 04:42:53 PM
Actually, MX VS ATV Reflex was a huge leap for the genre. Sadly, only myself and a dozen others follow it so it doesn't suprise me to see some of Ranbows talent shifted to digital games. At least we'll still get more mx games. But they'll probably just be minor upgrades.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: that Baby guy on February 05, 2010, 10:30:02 PM
I just assume this isn't anything special.  Whenever a new industry is developing, often more businesses get involved than said industry can support.   And what happens?  The weaker ones have to go under and drop out of it.  Weaker doesn't mean the ones with the least capital, either.

The good news, though, is that it's still possible for just about any start-up to get involved with the industry, create a great hit, and get a jump-start into games.  The reverse is true, too:  Make one flop, and you're out.  Still, it's a type of survival of the fittest, and that's never a bad thing.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on February 06, 2010, 04:47:17 AM
It's only sad when potentially good series or developers are lost in the process.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 12, 2010, 11:17:40 PM
Neversoft getting shut down, Vicarious Visions taking over (http://www.bingegamer.net/2010/rumor-layoffs-loss-of-guitar-hero-at-neversoft/)
Quote
I have always felt bad for Neversoft. Their Spider-Man game on the PlayStation is a forgotten classic and a precursor to the free-roaming Spider-Man games on PS2 and beyond. Gun was a critical and financial success that was set in the wild west. Apocalypse (starring Bruce Willis) is a highly underrated third-person shooter that more-than-hints at Robotron. Rather than being known for these titles, Neversoft is known today for their work on the Guitar Hero series.

After Guitar Hero 6, they won’t even have that.

According to sources at both Activision and Neversoft, after the developer completes work on technically-unannounced-but-we-all-know-its-coming Guitar Hero 6, the publisher will hand the groundbreaking franchise over to Vicarious Visions.
Vicarious Visions has some history with the Guitar Hero franchise, having worked on the Wii ports of every GH console game since Guitar Hero III: Legends of Rock. The studio works on the Nintendo DS Guitar Hero: On Tour series as well.

For a little additional creepiness, it was Vicarious Visions whom Activision awarded the Spider-Man license to create Spider-Man 2: Enter Electro.

This spells trouble for the developer. According to the same source, several members of the Guitar Hero team have been laid off (specifically several “note trackers”) and there are currently no official projects post-GH6.

UPDATE: Though there have been many layoffs at Neversoft, those who are currently working on the aforementioned Guitar Hero 6 are being kept until their jobs are complete at which time they’ll be let go. In layman’s terms — April. They’re being told today that they’ll be fired in April.

UPDATE 2: No more need to call this a rumor…

It's good news in terms of Wii Support, but Bad News for the developers being replaced.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on February 12, 2010, 11:52:25 PM
Every third party that craps on or ignores the Wii deserves to be laid off.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on February 13, 2010, 09:09:37 PM
GRIN says hi.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on March 02, 2010, 01:53:45 AM
I'm not 100% sure whats going on here, but this is definitely something to keep an eye on.

Security Appears Unannounced At Infinity Ward, Studio Heads Missing, Staff "Freaked Out" (http://g4tv.com/thefeed/blog/post/702911/UPDATE-Security-Appears-Unannounced-At-Infinity-Ward-Studio-Heads-Missing-Staff-Freaked-Out-.html)
Quote
Something's happening at Infinity Ward right now.

A source close to the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 developer just informed me that a "bunch of bouncer-types" just showed up outside of the Infinity Ward offices unannounced. When approached by employees, the non-uniformed "bouncers" were unwilling to disclose why they were there.

"Everyone is on edge," said my source.

Infinity Ward studio heads Vince Zampella and Jason West reportedly met with Activision this morning and have not been seen by Infinity Ward staff members since. My source did not delve into specifics, but described the relationship between Infinity Ward and Activision lately as "tense."

The mood around the Infinity Ward offices is currently described as "freaked out" and "confused."

"We just wanna make our games," said my source.

I've contacted Activision for comment on the ongoing situation at Infinity Ward. Stay tuned.

UPDATE - 10:07 PM:
More developments on the situation at Infinity Ward have come to light.

A screen shot surfaced from Jason West's Facebook page at Kotaku with the status update "Jason West is drinking. Also, unemployed." I can confirm from a source that's friends with West that update did actually come from West's account.

West also updated his Linkedin profile to appears to reflect a change in employment.

"President/Game Director/CCO/CTO Infinity WardJanuary 2001 – March 2010 (9 years 3 months)"

While this doesn't yet provide much insight into what actually happened at Infinity Ward, it confirms there are changes afoot at the Call of Duty developer. As soon as I know more, you'll know more.

Could Activision be on the verge of dismantling Infinity Ward? just months after making $1Billion with CoD: MW2?

there is speculation going around and some of it makes sense, but no one knows whats going on right now.

edit:
(http://i49.tinypic.com/2s64ks6.jpg)

Jason West's LinkedIn account update pic (http://cache.gawker.com/assets/images/comment/9/2010/03/65954e6f8344a97d2322e7da2e7b0acf/340x.png)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on March 02, 2010, 02:12:10 AM
"it wasn't supposed to be this way"
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on March 02, 2010, 02:28:33 AM
Could Activision be on the verge of dismantling Infinity Ward? just months after making $1Billion with CoD: MW2?

They did say earlier that IW wouldn't be making another CoD...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Urkel on March 02, 2010, 02:41:19 AM
Reggie won the bet. Now he's taking names.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on March 02, 2010, 02:42:48 AM
IW won't make more CoD, that frees them up for 5 more SpongeBob titles to flesh out the Wii's 15-year plan.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on March 02, 2010, 02:52:07 AM
If they had managed to crack the uncrackable Wii market with a blockbuster system selling multimillion seller then they would have achieved untouchable status.

Only IW refused to make Wii games. Guess now that Activision fired the 1st shot, those that want to keep their jobs might change their tunes.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on March 02, 2010, 04:36:35 AM
money > Graphics
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on March 02, 2010, 05:33:16 AM
Makes me wonder if this could change what Modern Warfare 2 Wii or even the one after that will be like or when it releases.

Remember the rumors about how IW were trying to hinder Treyarch and the Wii version at launch? Maybe they overstepped their boundaries and Activision finally said enough is enough. They did seem to be getting pretty cocky from what I read.

Course, it could be similar to how the Retro heads walked out except with more drama and heated words. They could have refused to make a Wii game or something like that and Activision looked at the numbers of the 'stunted' sales of MW: Reflex and saw the light. If a stealth released game with no advertising could still sell as well as Reflex did then I'll bet Activision wanted the sequel to get a lot more support.

Though this is mostly me hoping Activision is behind a sequel and making sure it is done right.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: SixthAngel on March 02, 2010, 05:52:11 AM
Seems to me it is typical Activision grinding all their franchises into dust.

They don't think creativity or anything is actually necessary.  They are replacable cogs meant to be put into the Guitar Hero/Modern Warfare/Tony Hawk machine.

Tony Hawk games are dust already.
The guys that made Guitar Hero told them they wanted to make a full band game.  Activision said "Hell no!"  They left and made their biggest competition, Rock Band, while Activision drove Guitar Hero into the ground and were forced to try and catch up with Band Hero.  Nice job guys!

It won't be long until Modern Warfare shares the same fate.  Yearly releases will eventually destroy it especially now that people who make the game good and actually add different things are gone or will be.  Correct me if I  am wrong since I'm not positive about this but someone told me that IW even had to fight to actually make CoD4 set in modern times.  If Activision is really serious about making CoD pay to play the cow will be drained in moments.
If EA had brains they'd be picking these guys up for a Medal of Honor reboot.

What really makes me sad is that I know its only a matter of time until Blizzard is turned to crap too.  I never played WoW but I was a big fan of their other games.  I hear people say "Blizzard is too successful, they can't."  It makes me laugh.  This is what always happens when a company buys/merges with another, you do it their way eventually, one way or another.  This guy is gone and probably most of the team that matters with him and he just made two of the most successful games ever.  Bye bye Blizzard.
If they had managed to crack the uncrackable Wii market with a blockbuster system selling multimillion seller then they would have achieved untouchable status.
No way.  They are just as expendable because Activision only cares about the franchise.  I think there is already a CoD game coming out this year made by another developer anyway.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Invincible Donkey Kong on March 02, 2010, 08:01:46 AM
You're supposed to take the names of other people, Bobby, not those in your own company.  You get zero points this round.  :reggie:
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on March 02, 2010, 09:07:37 AM
If they had managed to crack the uncrackable Wii market with a blockbuster system selling multimillion seller then maybe they would have achieved untouchable status.
No way.  They are just as expendable because Activision only cares about the franchise.  I think there is already a CoD game coming out this year made by another developer anyway.
sorry. I meant to stick a maybe in that sentence, but you're probably still right.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on March 02, 2010, 09:22:33 AM

Quote
UPDATE 11:20 PM: It turns out Activision may have showed their hand in this matter earlier today.

In an SEC filing made this morning (http://investor.activision.com/secfiling.cfm?filingID=1047469-10-1649), Activision cited a human resources investigation into "breaches of contract and insubordination by two senior employees at Infinity Ward."

Based on the information we currently have, at least one of those employees may have included Infinity Ward CTO Jason West. It's possible Vince Zampella is the other unmentioned employee.

"This matter is expected to involve the departure of key personnel and litigation,"
read the filing. "At present, the Company does not expect this matter to have a material impact on the Company."

UPDATE 12:02 AM: Double Fine's Tim Schafer, who had his own troubles with Activision over the release of Brutal Legend, recently commented on Twitter about what's happening between Infinity Ward and Activision.

"Getting mad at Activision for this kind of thing is like getting mad at an ape for throwing feces," said Schafer. "It's just how the beast communicates."

Now travel back in time to Dice 2010 and see what Bobby Kotic had to say
Quote from: Bobby Kotic @ Dice 2010
Kotick said that Activision is a company that supports creators and champions vision. He took barely-veiled shots at EA, comparing his interest and efforts in the past to help start companies such as Jamdat and Pandemic with the eventual fates of those companies now folded into EA and, in the case of Pandemic, shut down as an independent entity.

If you have a company and you want to protect your creative freedom and the integrity of the creative process, if you want to retain your identity and culture, if you want the support of the mothership and the resources of the mothership, we're a really great mothership. But if you want to sell out and move on, there are definitely other companies to talk to.

It's looking like Stratos might be right. It's starting to sound like Jason West was trying to upend a tea table @ Activision HQ and Kotic chopped his hands off before he even got a grip on the table.

and of course it probably all started over an argument about this...
Quote
Activision expresses interest in subscription-based Call of Duty

Infinity Ward may have tried to distance itself from the rumors about the Call of Duty franchise going down Subscription Lane™, but Activision head honcho Bobby Kotick said otherwise during the publishing giant's recent earnings call. "If you think about the success that we've had in other product categories on subscription, you can get a sense of the direction that we want to take that franchise," he said.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on March 02, 2010, 11:33:14 AM
I refuse to play MMOs for a reason and the biggest one is the whole 'pay-to-play' nonsense. How do they think this is going to fly? Non-MMO PC gamers never pay for their online gaming since the dawn of the webs and Microsoft already tried to do it and it failed. Consoles either already offer free online (Wii) or an all-encompassing system (XBox Live) so a $2play setup would be terrible there as well.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Ian Sane on March 02, 2010, 02:42:59 PM
Activision won't exist in five years.  Well I'm sure the Activision name will be used by some company but the big giant company they are today will be gone.

Activision loves their franchises.  But what franchises do they have?  Tony Hawk, Guitar Hero, Call of Duty and the Blizzard IPs.  That's all I can think of.  Tony Hawk is dead, Guitar Hero pretty much is, and Call of Duty likely will be soon as well.  I understand the idea of milking franchises.  The flaw in that business model though is that you wear the IP out and the market grows sick of it.  To continue on you need to create new IP to replace the old stuff that goes stale.  How is Activision going to do that when they cut loose the talent that comes up with the concepts in the first place?  They are so obviously fucked.

Blizzard will eventually be infected with this disease.  It's only a matter of time.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: D_Average on March 02, 2010, 02:57:06 PM
Activision dead in five years?  Not gonna happen.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on March 02, 2010, 03:25:16 PM
Right.  2 years.

(http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v156/SixSidedVideo/kelli.jpg)
Kelli will be waiting to weigh their hearts.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Kairon on March 02, 2010, 04:29:05 PM
Blizzard will eventually be infected with this disease.  It's only a matter of time.

NOOOOOOOOOO!!!! Not Blizzard! The only other gaming company I'm almost as much of a fanboy of as Nintendo! Please spare Blizzard!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on March 02, 2010, 06:00:33 PM
Greediness gets you shitcanned!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NWR_Neal on March 02, 2010, 06:37:47 PM
Activision is going EA the crap out of themselves, except I'd argue their stakes are higher, and their collapse will be more dramatic.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: SixthAngel on March 02, 2010, 11:27:42 PM
Blizzard will eventually be infected with this disease.  It's only a matter of time.

NOOOOOOOOOO!!!! Not Blizzard! The only other gaming company I'm almost as much of a fanboy of as Nintendo! Please spare Blizzard!

Its too late.  What do you think they are going to do once CoD runs dry?  The only franchises they have left to suck dry will be Blizzard's.  Then it will be time for the yearly Warcraft/Starcraft/Diablo iteration (not all made by Blizzard of course) unless there are some big changes in how the company runs.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on March 02, 2010, 11:28:44 PM
Well, here is the update on the story for now.
http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/27482/Analysis_Infinity_Wards_DoubleEdged_Sword.php (http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/27482/Analysis_Infinity_Wards_DoubleEdged_Sword.php)

summary:
Infinity Ward co-founders Jason West and Vince Zampella got fired for contract disputes
-Activision wanted IW to start work on MW3. Not next week, not tomorrow, but NOW!!!
-IW wanted to work on the New IP that they agreed on with Activision back in 2008
-Refer to the line above the last.
-JW & ZV put their foot down and refused
-Activision used that as reason to file for subordination and breach of contract since IW is the only studio that can work on new MW franchise games and Activision wants more MW NOW!!
-JW & ZV are let go.

Activision announces plans for future of Modern Warfare (http://kotaku.com/5484026/)
Quote
Publisher Activision announced today new "strategic plans" for the Call of Duty franchise, announcing a new developer for the shooter franchise and confirming the departure of key Infinity Ward staffers.
[...]
The company expects to release a new Call of Duty game from Treyarch this fall. In addition, Infinity Ward is in development on the first two downloadable map packs for Modern Warfare® 2 for release in 2010.

The company is also for the first time announcing that a new game in the Call of Duty series is expected to be released in 2011 and that Sledgehammer Games, a newly formed, wholly owned studio, is in development on a Call of Duty game that will extend the franchise into the action-adventure genre.

So to sum it all up.
IW wanted to make the New IP that Activision said they could during the contract negotiations they had back in 2008.
IW releases a record breaking MW2 and anted to start on that new IP now as planned.
Activision: (laughs)
IW says they are gonna do it anyway
Activision: (scowls)
Activision sends guards over to the studios, jams all incoming and out going signals to the building, chains and pad locked all the doors.
Jason West and Vince Zampella look around nervously as armed guards surround them inside Bobby Kotticks office.
Kottick then hits a button on his desk and says "Bring in the kit"
::About 4 hours of details missing:: But the skys darkened over Activision HQ and the sounds of thunder and lightning where being reported as a freak weather incident at the time. All security cameras in the building lost their feed and the sound of screaming could be heard from down the halls.
Jason & Vince wake up at home, unemployed and feeling hung over with a bottle in hand
Activision announces that IW will not be making the next 2 CoD games (leaving IW free to do their new IP?) and that those game will be released over the next 2 years (leaving IW free to make that new IP?).

I guess IW is now about to start work on MW3 scheduled for Fall 2012.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on March 02, 2010, 11:35:32 PM
And action-adventure CoD?!?

The Call of Legend: Duty's Quest?

Epic fail. Call of Doodie fail.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stogi on March 03, 2010, 01:12:27 AM
Action-adventure is what CoD already is...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on March 03, 2010, 01:52:02 AM
CoD is a shooter. Unless you were knocking the game yourself and I missed the humor.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Kairon on March 03, 2010, 02:14:48 AM
Blizzard will eventually be infected with this disease.  It's only a matter of time.

NOOOOOOOOOO!!!! Not Blizzard! The only other gaming company I'm almost as much of a fanboy of as Nintendo! Please spare Blizzard!

Its too late.  What do you think they are going to do once CoD runs dry?  The only franchises they have left to suck dry will be Blizzard's.  Then it will be time for the yearly Warcraft/Starcraft/Diablo iteration (not all made by Blizzard of course) unless there are some big changes in how the company runs.

This cannot happen. I REFUSE to believe this will happen. The world of Blizzard Fanbois will RISE UP and stop this from ever happening.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on March 03, 2010, 09:42:49 AM
BlackNMild's post wins.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on March 03, 2010, 01:36:01 PM
blackn~1's post would've been more awesome with

Bobby Kotick: I have altered the deal. Pray I do not alter it any further.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: D_Average on March 04, 2010, 02:02:51 AM
Per Giant Bomb, the new action game will be "God of Warefare".
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Kairon on March 04, 2010, 02:14:25 AM
God of Modern Warfare? God of War with Guns? Interesting...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on March 04, 2010, 02:16:24 AM
yeah it is, i would make the game like 300 meets Army of Darkness. 300 Spartans with guns lets conquer Persia!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on March 04, 2010, 04:04:58 PM
The Drama Continues.........

Ousted Infinity Ward Founders' Lawsuit Against Activision (The Court Documents) (http://kotaku.com/5485703/ousted-infinity-ward-founders-lawsuit-against-activision-the-court-documents/gallery/)
Quote
Read the 16-page complaint filed by the founders of Modern Warfare 2 development studio Infinity Ward against Activision, the company that ousted them on Monday. Jason West and Vince Zampella, dismissed by Activision for "insubordination" sued. Lots of details here(all legal docs at the link above).

Here is a summary of the long legalese from NeoGAF (http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showthread.php?t=389279)
Quote
Wow that's a lot of Legalese. Okay, in case anyone doesn't feel like reading all that stuff:

WHAT HAPPENED: The two developers were promised royalties as part of their contract for Modern Warfare 2. They're claiming Activision fired them under false pretenses in order to avoid paying those royalties.

The lawsuit then gives background about the company, including alleging that Activision purposely gave Infinity Ward a small budget for Call of Duty in order to buy 30% of its stock for cheap since the small budget would keep them from fighting it.

It also states some things we all know; sales figures, revenue numbers, etc. West and Zampella (the two developers and plaintiffs) had only one year on their contract before MW2 started. They were reluctant to get an extension on their contract, but did so anyway because Activision promised complete control of IW AND creative control over any post-Vietnam Call of Duty and MW games that might be developed.

Blah, blah, blah; more sales figures and talks of how MW2 was praised upon release. Activision then launched the investigation of Zampella and West about a week after the release of MW2. They hired outside lawyers and investigators to question other employees (some of whom cried from anxiety) and threatened insubordination charges if the two plaintiffs tried to console the other employees.

West and Zampella then said they were going to talk to their lawyers, at which point they were told Activision would make things worse if they did. The two men were also never told what exactly they had done wrong at any given point during the investigation. Activision strung the investigation along, then gave the two IW guys about six hours to respond to the accusations. A couple days later, Activision announced the new Call of Duty games they want to make (which were posted in another article).

WHAT THEY WANT: The first claim is to about US$36 million in damages. Second, they also want control of the Modern Warfare franchise back, since that was what was promised. Third, they also say Activision cannot make any further MW games OR post-Vietnam Call of Duties set in the present, near future, or far future. Fourth, they feel that Activision owes them their royalties and bonuses regardless of whether or not their termination from IW was legitimate. And obviously, they want their attorney fees covered.

And that's about it. I may have misread the complaint a bit, so feel free to correct me.

and a small excerpt from the legal docs
(http://i45.tinypic.com/2eqe89g.jpg)

I can't wait to see how this all plays out. ;D
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on March 04, 2010, 04:39:03 PM
This is entertainment.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on March 04, 2010, 04:55:58 PM
Looks like Activision bought IW for only $5million. Deal of the century.

more insight from GAF
Quote
Seems like the real issue is that in March 2008 Activision and West/Zampella signed a "memorandum of understanding" which seems to be the basis of one of their three claims against ACTI. In the memorandum, it purports to grant West/Zampella the ability to approve whether any MW branded game is released, in addition to granting them the right to choose which IP to work on after MW2 was completed.

Sounds like this largely hinges on whether this memorandum retroactively becomes part of the original contract they have with Activision. Looks like some lengthy litigation is in the picture. The court needs to determine (i) what legal rights are granted by the March 2008 MOU, (ii) whether it is enforceable (iii) whether they have a separate wrongful termination claim.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on March 04, 2010, 05:06:54 PM
Activision Seeking Internal Documents Related To West, Zampella And...Electronic Arts? (http://g4tv.com/thefeed/blog/post/702978/Activision-Seeking-Internal-Documents-Related-To-West-Zampella-AndElectronic-Arts-.html)
Quote
Much of what Activision's looking for is standard for a legal dispute related to, in Activision's words, "breach of contract" and "insubordination." Activision also believes they're legally in the clear."The Dispute involves West and Zampella's management of IW, as well as the development and marketing of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 ("MW2"), and potential subsequent games developed by IW," reads the memo sent internally before the lawsuit was filed. "Activision believes that it has done nothing wrong and intends to vigorously defend any claims asserted by West and Zampella."
Below are some excerpts from a list of documents that Activision is looking for. Note the last one:
  • "Documents regarding past, current or future IW projects, including but not limited to any and all businesses analyses of future projects (e.g. Modern Warfare 3)"
  • "Documents regarding any potential 'spin out' of IW, including but not limited to any communications with IW employees, West or Zampella regarding forming a new studio independent of Activision"
  • "Documents regarding West and Zampella's communications with Activision's competitors, including but not limited to Electronic Arts"
Modern Warfare 3 likely isn't in development yet, but it's not surprising to see that it was already on everyone's radar. The memo seems to indicate that Activision may have suspected West and Zampella were looking outside the company.
Things just got real interesting (not as if they already weren't though)

edit:
some information that the summary leaves out.
(in February Activision lawyers put West/ Zampella in a windowless room on a holiday weekend for a 6 hour interrogation, and confiscated all of their phones and computers in part of their search for "evidence of insubordination."  When West / Zampella complained; Activision lawyers asserted that complaining about the interrogation was in-and-of itself an act of insubordination.)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on March 04, 2010, 06:19:07 PM
Interesting situation. I won't comment on who I think is to blame because right now it seems like a "he said-she said" situation with both sides making accusations at the other. I will comment on some things though:

Regarding West and Zampella trying to spin out their own studio; I can understand. Remember when several members of Rare left to form Free Radical? They took several of the top employees with them. I am sure Activision wouldn't want these 2 leaving and trying to lure some of the top COD workers with them.

If those 2 are under contract with Acitivision Blizzard and they were secretly contacting Electronic Arts, then they have themselves to be blamed.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on March 04, 2010, 06:38:14 PM
Activision steps up to the podium:

Activision "Disappointed" By Infinity Ward Founders' "Meritless" Lawsuit (http://kotaku.com/5485843/activision-disappointed-by-infinity-ward-founders-meritless-lawsuit)
Quote
"Activision is disappointed that Mr. Zampella and Mr. West have chosen to file a lawsuit, and believes their claims are meritless," the company said in a statement e-mailed to Kotaku by a spokesperson. "Over eight years, Activision shareholders provided these executives with the capital they needed to start Infinity Ward, as well as the financial support, resources and creative independence that helped them flourish and achieve enormous professional success and personal wealth.

"In return, Activision legitimately expected them to honor their obligations to Activision, just like any other executives who hold positions of trust in the company. While the company showed enormous patience, it firmly believes that its decision was justified based on their course of conduct and actions. Activision remains committed to the Call of Duty franchise, which it owns, and will continue to produce exciting and innovative games for its millions of fans."
(http://i50.tinypic.com/c5onr.jpg)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on March 04, 2010, 07:03:56 PM
kinda reminds me of duke nukem forever, except these guys actually delivered product
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on March 05, 2010, 07:24:35 AM
I wonder how many people will quit over this mess.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on March 05, 2010, 03:22:01 PM
Game Informer viewed the documents with an IP lawyer
I haven't read it yet, but I assume it's a good read from a professional point of view.

http://gameinformer.com/b/news/archive/2010/03/04/the-activision-lawsuit-what-it-means-and-where-it-s-going.aspx
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stogi on March 05, 2010, 05:36:00 PM
This thread is cracking me up.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on March 06, 2010, 02:09:56 AM
I wonder how many people will quit over this mess.
I'm sure they will be able to find Nintendo newer jobs.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on March 06, 2010, 06:00:42 AM
Man, the more I read about this Activision story, the worse it looks for Activision (which I consider to be a good thing).  Just parsing the story here, what I gather is that it looks like Activision (obviously) wanted to make a Modern Warfare 3, but had a contract with the 2 head people at Infinity Ward that gave them veto power over anyone making a 3rd game through 2011 and had huge bonuses coming.  The Infinity Ward folk wanted to make a New IP as well, which Activision publicly disdains.  So Activision allegedly goes on a witch hunt to find a way to void their contracts and fire them so they didn't have to pay them their money and could proceed with milking Modern Warfare.  Diabolical, but it's what I expect from Activision.

Now, I realize that there's a lot that needs to be proved in the Court of Law here but does anyone really believe Activision wasn't actively trying to engage in shady business practices here, especially with their shady history (Brutal Legend, anyone?)?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on March 06, 2010, 03:44:26 PM
Here's hoping Infinity Ward gets bought by Nintendo or something.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on March 06, 2010, 03:47:21 PM
Here's hoping Infinity Ward gets bought by Nintendo or something.

That would be difficult considering Activision owns them already.  Perhaps Nintendo could buy out whatever studio the employees leaving Infinity Ward create, before someone like EA does.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on March 06, 2010, 03:50:37 PM
The studio is 100%-owned by Activision Blizzard, so Activision would have to agree to sell them (which they could do since Activision would still keep the Call of Duty IP).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Shaymin on March 06, 2010, 06:30:43 PM
But the status of the Modern Warfare IP is still before the courts... and that's the IP that just sold 6 million units in its launch month.

Though I'm trying to figure out what the hell IW or its remnants would make for Nintendo.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on March 06, 2010, 07:20:49 PM
Only the "Modern Warfare" part, the main "Call of Duty" part is not in dispute (the Infinity Ward founders are making no claim to it). Not that it matters because I don't think they have a case against Activision.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on March 06, 2010, 07:22:25 PM
But the status of the Modern Warfare IP is still before the courts... and that's the IP that just sold 6 million units in its launch month.

Though I'm trying to figure out what the hell IW or its remnants would make for Nintendo.

A new FPS for the Wii? I'd rather Treyarch do that though because they have a good deal of Wii experience and Modern Warfare Reflex shows they can pull off an amazing game on the technical side that is on par with it's HD counterparts in terms of performance.

I do wonder what this new IP would be from IW. Would it be another FPS with a unique twist to it or were they hoping to break out and try something new like a 3PS or platformer or sports game or something.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on March 06, 2010, 07:30:53 PM
or possibly Retro, i really hope around e3 we find out what the hell those guys are doing.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on March 06, 2010, 07:49:19 PM
I'm wondering too, the last thing they worked on was Metroid Prime Trilogy (and let's be honest, I don't think that was too much since the only real work involved was adding pointer controls to Prime 1 & 2).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on March 06, 2010, 08:13:57 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Pit._Brawl.jpg

we can only hope right? Or some new shooter, if its made by retro it should be decent.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Caliban on March 06, 2010, 09:32:15 PM
does anyone really believe Activision wasn't actively trying to engage in shady business practices here, especially with their shady history (Brutal Legend, anyone?)?

What happened with Brutal Legend?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Shaymin on March 06, 2010, 09:40:22 PM
Short version:

- Vivendi was set to publish Brutal Legend before they merged with Activision
- Activision wanted to turn it into a Guitar Hero-branded game, then dropped it along with Ghostbusters and 50 Cent because it couldn't be exploited annually (EXACT WORDS)
- DoubleFine took it to EA Partners for publishing
- Activision filed suit trying to block release on the last day of E3 (they lost)

Best quote on the whole situation: "It's like an ex-husband suing his wife for hooking up with a better looking guy"
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Caliban on March 06, 2010, 09:47:34 PM
Ah I remember now. Thanks Shaymin.

The IW people were initially working for EA under another name for the Medal of Honor series, so I assume that the same thing will happen again in the sense that they will leave and work under a new name. I also think that Nintendo would do good to have them, but where will Retro fit in? I mean, Retro is a capable company too to make a First Person game.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on March 06, 2010, 09:52:04 PM
does anyone really believe Activision wasn't actively trying to engage in shady business practices here, especially with their shady history (Brutal Legend, anyone?)?

What happened with Brutal Legend?

Activision had Double-Fine create the game, and then mid-project they shelved the project stating that they had no intention of releasing it (along with other notable titles like Ghostbusters).  EA picked up the publishing rights to the game and had Double Fine complete the game, which prompted Activision to file a lawsuit around E3 to forbid EA from releasing the game (which, considering the game released last year, failed).  Their argument was that they paid Double Fine a lot of money to develop a game that never came to be, which is silly considering it was Activision that canceled the project.  That's the gist of it, anyway.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on March 06, 2010, 09:54:48 PM
Best quote on the whole situation: "It's like an ex-husband suing his wife for hooking up with a better looking guy"

Actually, I think Tim Schafer had a better one: "Hey, if Activision liked it, then they should have put a ring on it.  Oh great, now Beyoncé is going to sue me too."
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Shaymin on March 06, 2010, 10:05:22 PM
Yes! You are correct, sir!

Seriously, I forgot about that one.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on March 06, 2010, 10:21:29 PM
A couple of months before it came out, Activision sued Double Fine Productions for breach of contract and said that they still had rights to the game.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on March 07, 2010, 01:51:55 AM
Retro could always hire the IW escapees. More FPS experience under a Nintendo funded and supervised environment would be great.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on March 07, 2010, 02:40:48 AM
its hard to say, if i worked at IW Retro may ignore that they stopped hiring a month ago
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on March 07, 2010, 11:36:16 AM
http://www.data-max.co.jp/2010/03/post_9070.html

Quote from: translation
On 1st March 2010, Cing (the developer of Another Code, Hotel Dusk, Little King's Story) filed for bankruptcy in Japan. The company has suffered liabilities totaling 256 million yen (about 2.5 million USD).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on March 07, 2010, 12:21:29 PM
$2.5 million, that's all they owed? So Cing must have been one of those tiny developers that struggle to exist from game to game and even one game bombing could mean the end of them.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on March 07, 2010, 04:51:18 PM
Damn... they actually made quality games, too. Other 3rd parties make shitty games and they post record profits (acitivision/ea/ubisoft) but then these guys post gold and go bankrupt. It isn't fair! I don't know who else to blame, so I guess this must be the fault of consumers. How many have bought titles like Little King's Story? If you didn't then you are part of the problem...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on March 07, 2010, 06:10:44 PM
I bought Kings Story...

Is this the kind of bankruptcy you can bounce back from ir is this the 'sell everything off and lose the company' type? The article is in Japanese.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on March 07, 2010, 06:24:07 PM
Maybe this will answer your question

Cing's Official Website
http://www.cing.co.jp/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on March 07, 2010, 06:32:59 PM
Maybe this will answer your question

Cing's Official Website
http://www.cing.co.jp/

For those too lazy to click, it comes up for me as completely blank..
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on March 07, 2010, 07:52:01 PM
Uh-oh. What will happen to those properties, I wonder. Hotel Dusk reportedly had a sequel in the works and Nintendo published those. I was really hoping for a new King's Story to come out with IR controls down the road.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on March 07, 2010, 11:26:17 PM
Retro could always hire the IW escapees. More FPS experience under a Nintendo funded and supervised environment would be great.
Did those two guys who threw a ****-fit after leaving Retro DO ANYTHING worth mentioning, just to be fair?

I'm wondering too, the last thing they worked on was Metroid Prime Trilogy (and let's be honest, I don't think that was too much since the only real work involved was adding pointer controls to Prime 1 & 2).
They also made the games look great in 16:8, so throw them a bone.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on March 07, 2010, 11:33:58 PM
I think you meant 16:9 (16:9 is already cramped, I don't want to lost even more screen space by cramming it down even more with 16:8)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Dirk Temporo on March 07, 2010, 11:48:37 PM
16:9 is already cramped

:|

I wish there were more I could say to that.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on March 08, 2010, 03:16:05 AM
"Get a taller TV?"
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on March 08, 2010, 06:07:31 PM
changing a screen resolution isn't hard.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on March 09, 2010, 01:22:27 PM
changing a screen resolution isn't hard.
*insert TV maker here* requests that you have an IQ of *something over 100* to operate the screen resolution options.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on March 09, 2010, 01:28:27 PM
I think he was commenting on Retro's AAA port job.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on March 09, 2010, 09:16:48 PM
Which is better then any grade "A" (used loosely) port third excuse makers have done.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on March 10, 2010, 01:14:20 PM
Report: Rebellion cuts 20 staff, Derby studio shuts down
Rebellion has allegedly let go approximately 20 staff from its main studio in Oxford, UK, while its Derby location has been shut down, reports Develop. Rebellion, which most-recently released Aliens vs Predator, has yet to confirm the details

As is typical with these types of stories, it's hard to tell if the layoffs were part of the natural game development cycle after a major release, or if there's an actual "issue" going on. As for the Derby studio, which once upon a time was Core Design (Tomb Raider), has been on the chopping block for months.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NWR_Lindy on March 10, 2010, 08:56:42 PM
I think this is just general industry contraction.  People aren't buying $60 games like they used to.  Too many consoles, too many games being made for said consoles.  When the market shrinks even the tiniest bit, all of these smaller players gets squeezed out.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on March 10, 2010, 09:52:09 PM
16:9 is already cramped

:|

I wish there were more I could say to that.

Maybe I should have explained more. I hate it when movie studios release something in wide-screen and then just add black borders at the top and bottom of the screen (what's worse is the studios that for some reason do letterboxing and windowboxing at the same time, resulting in the whole picture being surrounded by black borders). Some actually get it right, as well as all video game companies, by having 16:9 pictures actually fill the screen (most TV shows get this right too).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on March 10, 2010, 10:04:55 PM
Well there is Widescreen 16:9(1.78:1) and then there is Theater Wide 21:9 (2.35:1)

if you have a widescreen TV and your movie has black bars on the top and bottom, then your movie was shot and displayed in full frame Theater Wide Display.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stogi on March 10, 2010, 10:10:33 PM
Yup....

That's what's called "Anamorphic" widescreen.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on March 10, 2010, 10:32:33 PM
Anamorphic just means the picture is actually stored "squished," relying on the display to stretch it to proper horizontal ratio.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on March 10, 2010, 10:33:54 PM
What doesn't make sense is that if they were just introducing the HD market with all new TV's and widescreen was to be the standard, then why not bump the standard up to "Theater Wide" WS and use that as the HDTV standard?

It sucks to have 16:9 as the standard and movie makers want to up the ante to extra widescreen when everyone just started buying WS TV's barely 10 years ago. Weren't movies already being shot in that frame before 16:9 was standard?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on March 10, 2010, 10:36:13 PM
What doesn't make sense is that if they were just introducing the HD market with all new TV's and widescreen was to be the standard, then why not bump the standard up to "Theater Wide" WS and use that as the HDTV standard?

It sucks to have 16:9 as the standard and movie makers want to up the ante to extra widescreen when everyone just started buying WS TV's barely 10 years ago. Weren't movies already being shot in that frame before 16:9 was standard?

Indeed.  Coincidentally, I'm watching my Blu-Ray of Evangelion 1.11 right now (which was a theatrical movie in both Japan and limited theaters in North America), and it's perfectly sized to my 24 in. widescreen LCD with no bars or stretching.  It's rather glorious, actually.  How I wish all my movies would do that, because although after a few minutes of focusing on a "widescreen" movie I can no longer see the bars they're still annoying.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on March 10, 2010, 10:40:10 PM
At least some movies put the subtitles and closed captions in the bottom black bar, others us letterboxing and still put the closed captions over the movie.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on March 11, 2010, 12:46:28 AM
People aren't buying $60 games like they used to.

When did they ever? The $60 a pop games is a new phenomenon of this generation. One of the reasons Nintendo is the market leader is because they stayed at the tried and true $50 MSRP for games. The reason the PS3/360 is struggling is because of expensive consoles and also expensive games.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stogi on March 11, 2010, 01:09:06 AM
Actually, that's why I think handheld gaming is even more popular now. Most games are 20-30 bucks brand new and they are just as fun.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on March 11, 2010, 01:18:23 AM
What doesn't make sense is that if they were just introducing the HD market with all new TV's and widescreen was to be the standard, then why not bump the standard up to "Theater Wide" WS and use that as the HDTV standard?

It sucks to have 16:9 as the standard and movie makers want to up the ante to extra widescreen when everyone just started buying WS TV's barely 10 years ago. Weren't movies already being shot in that frame before 16:9 was standard?

...Don't forget how lots of computer monitors were manufactured to 16:10 (wtf) in addition to 16:9 and 4:3, and how lots of 4:3 pre-HDTVs included 16:9 modes, plus there's a specification called "Super Widescreen" TV that's been in the conceptual stage designed specifically to display Hollywood's 2.35:1 pictures.  Just throw more monkeys in that barrel.

The end result is:  no matter what TV/monitor you buy, you will OFTEN end up wasting screen space with black bars, somewhere.

^ All this fuels a big part of my Anti-Industry stance.  I once planned on ranting on the subject in detail for my site, and I was using the screenshots below as part of my research/presentation.
http://www.nintendoworldreport.com/forums/index.php?topic=22602.msg592023#msg592023

Example,

- Misconception:  Some Wii games, like Capcom's, don't display in "full" "widescreen," whereas Nintendo's display fine.
- Truth:  Capcom's (and others') games are designed to proper 4:3 "computer SD" specs, 640x480 initial, meant to be stretched for an "effective" 16:9 resolution of ~853x480  (on a widescreen SDTV, the 480 height doesn't change (pixels are wide instead of square), so the math is based on the 480 lines that "stay true":  16 * 480 / 9 = 853.33).  HIGH DEFICIENCY TELEVIZIONS do NOT display SD NTSC content correctly -- they cram all NTSC 720x480 pixels (640 plus the 80 "unused" pixels on the sides) into the viewable space, retaining the CRAP REGIONS OF THE IMAGE we're traditionally not meant to see.  On classical TVs, only the middle ~640 pixels of the picture were actually viewable (on older computers, everything was viewable, so 4:3~640x480 was a clean and straightforward standard), becuz the sides were essentially overscan areas of the tube that were hidden under the TV's outer frame, therefore any "vertical black bars" would've been chopped, plus TV networks made sure their watermarks fit inside the viewable area correctly.  The  assumption was "4:3 can be converted to 16:9", but 720x480 ISN'T 4:3, it's 3:2, so WHAT, THE ****, WENT WRONG, INDUSTRY?

HDTVs should have ignored/chopped off the sides, but don't.  Nintendo overcame this HDTV "SHORTCOMING" by drawing most of their games at 686x480 inside the video signal instead of 640x480 -- 640x480 is ideally supposed to be stretched to "16:9", but in real-life the effective viewing ratio on the TV is about "14.22:9" (the leftover 1.78 = empty black bars); 686x480 yields a real-life viewing ratio of about "15.24:9" remedying the "black bar" effect.

I hate everything.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on March 11, 2010, 02:37:16 AM
awesome info! Ningurl69*huggles!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on March 11, 2010, 02:43:57 AM
People aren't buying $60 games like they used to.

Maybe the publishers should stop pricing every B and C list game at 60$ then.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Ymeegod on March 11, 2010, 06:34:55 PM
" Cing Incorporation, the developer of Nintendo's Another Code series, Hotel Dusk: Room 215 and Little King's Story, have filed bankruptcy with debts of 256 million yen (US$2.8 millions)."

I loved LKS too :(.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on March 11, 2010, 06:36:43 PM
Check the previous page, that was already reported in this threat a few days ago.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on April 05, 2010, 01:55:51 PM
Sega confirmed today that they are shutting down Sega Studios San Francisco. The studio developed Iron Man, Golden Axe: Beast Rider, and just finished Iron Man 2. The studio was mostly made up of people from Secret Level. The wording makes it sound like the employees were fired, not just re-assigned to other internal studios.

http://www.industrygamers.com/news/sega-closes-iron-man-2-developer/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on April 05, 2010, 02:28:21 PM
Sega confirmed today that they are shutting down Sega Studios San Francisco. The studio developed Iron Man, Golden Axe: Beast Rider, and just finished Iron Man 2. The studio was mostly made up of people from Secret Level. The wording makes it sound like the employees were fired, not just re-assigned to other internal studios.

http://www.industrygamers.com/news/sega-closes-iron-man-2-developer/ (http://www.industrygamers.com/news/sega-closes-iron-man-2-developer/)

Considering how terrible the games they've released allegedly are, I won't shed a tear over this developer closing.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on April 05, 2010, 02:36:26 PM
Maybe, but it's never good to see a group of developers suddenly lose their job.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on April 05, 2010, 03:07:25 PM
Depends, have they made any Wii games outside the shitty movie tie in trash (IRON MAN)?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on April 05, 2010, 03:46:56 PM
Maybe, but it's never good to see a group of developers suddenly lose their job.

I think of this as natural selection.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on April 05, 2010, 09:26:32 PM
im with KDR here. I'd just fire the programmers though, the art in those games was well done.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on April 05, 2010, 09:31:19 PM
Depends, have they made any Wii games outside the ****ty movie tie in trash (IRON MAN)?

Does it really matter if they made Wii games or not?  They made bad games, and bad movie tie-ins at that.  I'll never understand this mentality that it's fine if studios close up, so long as they hadn't made any Wii games.  I wish the people who worked at that studio the best because there's a lot working against you when you make a movie-licensed game that's all out of your control, but the studio made bad games.  I won't miss them.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on April 06, 2010, 05:31:50 AM
I thought the Iron Man game was actually somewhat decent and sold well?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: fiendcode on April 06, 2010, 06:15:39 AM
Depends, have they made any Wii games outside the ****ty movie tie in trash (IRON MAN)?
They only made the 360/PS3 versions of Iron Man.  A2M did the Wii version.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BeautifulShy on April 06, 2010, 06:19:10 AM
From what I heard the Iron Man game was a good game. The only bad game that TJ Spike posted was that Golden Axe:Dragon Rider game. I think it was buggy and was short in length.

And guys not all movie games are bad.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on April 06, 2010, 11:40:11 AM
From what I heard the Iron Man game was a good game. The only bad game that TJ Spike posted was that Golden Axe:Dragon Rider game. I think it was buggy and was short in length.

And guys not all movie games are bad.
True, but the problem is that they are not common enough. For every Goldeneye we get, we also get The Matrix... many more times.

@broodwars: Why do you take my comments seriously?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 06, 2010, 12:10:55 PM
@broodwars: Why do you take my comments seriously?

Because Internet is Serious Business.

I thought you knew?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on April 06, 2010, 01:10:22 PM
Breaking the system is the best course of action.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Podings on April 09, 2010, 05:49:27 AM
Sad to see how hard the economic situation is hitting games.
 
And how hard bad management is hitting games.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on April 09, 2010, 12:26:40 PM
the version of iron man the game i played was terrible, controls were total ****.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on April 09, 2010, 01:53:42 PM
Sad to see how hard the economic situation is hitting games.
 
And how hard bad management is hitting games.
Giant egos AND bad management.

It makes good entertainment in a sick twisted way.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 12, 2010, 10:56:56 AM
Activision/Infinity Ward: The Firing part 5: The Conclusion?

This is a good one, Jason West and Vince Zampanella from IW, the guys who left EA to form their own company, were bought out by Actvision and then were fired from that company they started, Have now been signed back on at EA(for exclusive publishing rights).

But get this, their new company name is.... Respawn Entertainment (http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Jason-West-and-Vince-Zampella-bw-1906793642.html?x=0&.v=)

Quote
LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today, Jason West and Vince Zampella, creators of the multi-billion dollar Call of Duty® franchise, announced the formation of a new development studio -- Respawn Entertainment. The move positions the Respawn Entertainment leadership team as the owners of the intellectual property they create. The company will focus on creating state-of-the-art gaming experiences for global audiences. The studio is currently assembling a world-class team of designers, artists and engineers. Applicants can submit resumes to jobs@respawn.com.

Respawn is pleased to also announce that it has awarded Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:ERTS - News), through the distinguished EA Partners program, exclusive worldwide publishing and distribution rights to future games. Terms were not disclosed. West and Zampella are represented by Creative Artists Agency (CAA).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on April 12, 2010, 11:14:41 AM
It's a bizarre world we're living in where EA comes out of this situation looking like the Knight in Shining Armor.  Here's hoping EA lets them create those New IPs they were interested in when they worked at Infinity Ward, but somehow I think the terms of their contract states they'll have to make an FPS first.  :-\
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on April 12, 2010, 12:41:51 PM
Guess: New studio will sink with an overbudget HD game that flops.

Just like the rest of them. =D
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on April 12, 2010, 12:45:26 PM
=D
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: noname2200 on April 12, 2010, 12:58:42 PM
It's a bizarre world we're living in where EA comes out of this situation looking like the Knight in Shining Armor.  Here's hoping EA lets them create those New IPs they were interested in when they worked at Infinity Ward, but somehow I think the terms of their contract states they'll have to make an FPS first.  :-\

Have those guys ever made anything but an FPS? Serious question, mind you. I'm guessing they probably want to take another crack at that genre.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on April 12, 2010, 01:01:34 PM
It's a bizarre world we're living in where EA comes out of this situation looking like the Knight in Shining Armor.  Here's hoping EA lets them create those New IPs they were interested in when they worked at Infinity Ward, but somehow I think the terms of their contract states they'll have to make an FPS first.  :-\

Have those guys ever made anything but an FPS? Serious question, mind you. I'm guessing they probably want to take another crack at that genre.

From what we've heard about the whole firing fiasco, those two have been wanting to work on a new IP since finishing the original Modern Warfare.  They had to be bribed with lucrative new contracts and control over the IP to get them to come back to do Modern Warfare 2, so I wouldn't be surprised if EA allows them to work on a new IP if it's as far removed from a typical FPS as possible.  Who knows?  Maybe it would be something like a Timesplitters or Bioshock that's just radically different in style or tone.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 12, 2010, 02:07:13 PM
I'm not sure EA has any control over what they make or not. EA is signed on as exclusive publisher through the EA Partners Program, and I have no idea if that gives EA the right to dictate project direction or genre as much as 1st refusal rights on any project that they have for publishing.

Ofcourse there is still a chance that they could wrestle the Modern Warfare name away from Activision since the whole "subordination" was based around who controls what and who promised who what.

So Respawned Ent.'s first game under EA could be Modern Warfare: Future Soldier or something along those lines.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: rbtr on April 12, 2010, 03:43:16 PM
CALL OF WARFARE : MODERN DUTIES
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on April 12, 2010, 07:37:34 PM
Activision/Infinity Ward: The Firing part 5: The Conclusion?

This is a good one, Jason West and Vince Zampanella from IW, the guys who left EA to form their own company, were bought out by Actvision and then were fired from that company they started, Have now been signed back on at EA(for exclusive publishing rights).

But get this, their new company name is.... Respawn Entertainment (http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Jason-West-and-Vince-Zampella-bw-1906793642.html?x=0&.v=)

Quote
LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Today, Jason West and Vince Zampella, creators of the multi-billion dollar Call of Duty® franchise, announced the formation of a new development studio -- Respawn Entertainment. The move positions the Respawn Entertainment leadership team as the owners of the intellectual property they create. The company will focus on creating state-of-the-art gaming experiences for global audiences. The studio is currently assembling a world-class team of designers, artists and engineers. Applicants can submit resumes to jobs@respawn.com.

Respawn is pleased to also announce that it has awarded Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:ERTS - News), through the distinguished EA Partners program, exclusive worldwide publishing and distribution rights to future games. Terms were not disclosed. West and Zampella are represented by Creative Artists Agency (CAA).

another place to apply :P
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on April 13, 2010, 01:23:14 PM
Don't Perm! If their massive HD product flops, you'd be out of the job!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: vudu on April 13, 2010, 01:25:42 PM
Don't Perm! If their massive HD product flops, you'd be out of the job!

Do you ever have anything nice to say about a non-Nintendo product?  Your incessant trolling it starting to wear thin.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on April 13, 2010, 01:37:52 PM
Don't Perm! If their massive HD product flops, you'd be out of the job!

Do you ever have anything nice to say about a non-Nintendo product?  Your incessant trolling it starting to wear thin.
Considering what thread I'm posting in, and looking at the first opening post, how can I troll when I'm making a fact?
 
fine, I guess I will stop. guess the internet is serious business
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NWR_insanolord on April 13, 2010, 02:41:42 PM
Stop trying to be Pro. You're not good enough at it to pull it off; it requires a really high skill level or else it's just terrible.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: noname2200 on April 13, 2010, 03:17:44 PM
It's a bizarre world we're living in where EA comes out of this situation looking like the Knight in Shining Armor.  Here's hoping EA lets them create those New IPs they were interested in when they worked at Infinity Ward, but somehow I think the terms of their contract states they'll have to make an FPS first.  :-\

Have those guys ever made anything but an FPS? Serious question, mind you. I'm guessing they probably want to take another crack at that genre.

From what we've heard about the whole firing fiasco, those two have been wanting to work on a new IP since finishing the original Modern Warfare.  They had to be bribed with lucrative new contracts and control over the IP to get them to come back to do Modern Warfare 2, so I wouldn't be surprised if EA allows them to work on a new IP if it's as far removed from a typical FPS as possible.  Who knows?  Maybe it would be something like a Timesplitters or Bioshock that's just radically different in style or tone.

Gotcha. To be honest, I think they're probably too comfortable with their current style of game, so I doubt their new project will be too dissimilar to Call of Duty; even though it will be a new IP, I still expect the familiar military-based, story-driven, scripted-events heavy single-player campaign (albeit with a new setting) rather than anything entirely new. But hey, I could be wrong!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NWR_insanolord on April 13, 2010, 03:31:06 PM
What did they make when they left EA because they were sick of making Medal of Honor? Call of Duty.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 13, 2010, 03:59:35 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Infinity_Ward
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 13, 2010, 09:49:12 PM
Quite a few employees have left IW since this whole thing started too. I don't remember if I posted about any of them, but I bet most of them land at the new company Respawn Ent.

http://ps3.ign.com/articles/108/1083234p1.html (http://ps3.ign.com/articles/108/1083234p1.html)


Here is the headcount so far
Gotta wonder if the next IW game will hold up to what their past games have accomplished (whatever that may be).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BeautifulShy on April 13, 2010, 09:58:36 PM
Oh another thing EA is going to take a backseat with this whole thing and let Respawn Entertainment do what they want. They aren't going to be control freaks.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 13, 2010, 10:17:16 PM
Respawn in their own company. EA does not control them.
Respawn will be part of the EA Partners Program like Valve who had EA publish Black/Orange Box on the HD consoles. All EA has is exclusive Publishing rights, which likely means they likely get 1st refusal rights and maybe slight quality/feature control of the final product, but they don't get to choose the project or the direction of development.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on April 13, 2010, 10:47:46 PM
Wasn't Orange Box not made by Valve though? I heard it suffered from quality control problems.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 13, 2010, 11:30:23 PM
It may have been ported by another company but Valve is the creator and EA was the publisher.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Shaymin on April 13, 2010, 11:33:15 PM
Valve did the 360 version in-house, but the PS3 version was ported by another group. Gabe Newell is not down with the Triple, to put it mildly.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on April 14, 2010, 12:43:40 PM
That's what I heard. Valve does not like developing for the PS3.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on April 15, 2010, 08:08:58 PM
Newell said laziness was a factor. I however think its business doing other cooler ****.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NWR_insanolord on April 16, 2010, 12:25:29 AM
Gabe Newell hated on the Mac for a long time, and now Steam is coming out for OS X, so they could change their mind and be more supportive of Sony, or even Nintendo, in the future.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Galford on April 20, 2010, 12:18:41 AM
Wow my login still works. ;D
 
Gabe Newell has stated more then once that hell will freeze before he codes for the PS3.
Some business types at Valve have made noise about supporting the PS3, but that's about it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on April 20, 2010, 07:24:12 AM
......
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: SixthAngel on April 20, 2010, 11:27:18 AM
Is this really a surprise?
Xbox is basically a pc so its cake for there pc game to go there,  ps3 isn't so they don't want to do it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on April 20, 2010, 11:44:07 AM
From what I understand, the PS3 with its cell processors is VERY difficult to develop for.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on April 20, 2010, 06:08:51 PM
But apparently its easier to do than add meaningful waggle to a Wii version with lower rez graphics or else we'd be seeing Wii60 releases instead of PS360 ones.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on April 20, 2010, 10:49:00 PM
hehe the dot reply was for some xbox modding bot.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 20, 2010, 11:31:52 PM
hehe the dot reply was for some xbox modding bot.

That's why we don't reply to the bots. you'll seem crazy replying to a non-existent post even if you quote it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on April 21, 2010, 02:13:10 AM
But apparently its easier to do than add meaningful waggle to a Wii version with lower rez graphics or else we'd be seeing Wii60 releases instead of PS360 ones.

I know what you mean. I am sorta hoping when the PS3's motion thing takes off we might see better multi-platform support on the Wii, because if other consoles also have motion control then it makes it harder for 3rd parties to come up with excuses for not getting it right.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 21, 2010, 02:14:46 AM
It will just give them a platform to do their motion on while they continue to ignore the Wii.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 22, 2010, 05:24:58 PM
SEGA lays off 73, US studio to focus on "Downloadable Games" (http://www.1up.com/do/newsStory?cId=3178956)
Quote
Sega was hit today by 73 layoffs as part of a business reorganization   that will see the company focusing more on social and digital games.
 

  According to a statement received by 1UP, 36 employees in Sega's San   Francisco office and 37 in London have been made redundant as part of   the reorganization. The San Francisco office will now focus   exclusively on digital and downloadable content (as the newly formed   "Digital Division") while London will act as the company's   administrative hub, as well as handle traditional console and PC games.
 
  "In recent years, digital platforms have taken an increasing share of   video gaming revenues and we believe this growth is set to continue,"   said the statement. "Sega has already enjoyed commercial success within   this new and exciting gaming medium and it is now the company's   intention to fully embrace change and set a strategy not only to   maximize revenues within the digital space but, through innovation and   quality, take up a leadership position."
 
  Speaking to 1UP, Sega West president Mike Hayes described the move as   "chapter two" in the company's continued evolution after being a   hardware manufacturer.
 
  "It's quite interesting, if you look at Sega's relatively short modern   history when we reinvented ourselves as a multi-platform publisher, the   excitement for us was being on the PlayStation 2 and Gamecube and Xbox,   and we sort of travelled a path where our market share has increased   significantly over the past five years in both North America and in the   European territories," said Hayes.
 
  "[The new focus on digital media] is part of our ongoing expansion,   which is great. We have a very strong base now in the traditional   business. We still want to grow, we still want to be very   competitive, but in terms of development and growing our overall market   share, part of that sort of journey for Sega, sort of like chapter two,   is this big digital arena," he continued. "It's new, it provides new   outlets for us. We can do different things in terms of gaming   experiences, which is interesting for us. So in a way it's sort of a   part of the ongoing rebirth of Sega as a multi-platform agnostic   publisher of games."
 
  According to Hayes, the layoffs were mainly caused by Sega's U.S. and   London offices having different employees fulfilling the same tasks -   now that both divisions have been further consolidated, according to   Hayes, some of these employees are no longer necessary to the company.
 
  "There was a lot of duality, there was a lot of doing the same work   twice," said hayes.
 
  "There was a lot of copying between both San Francisco and London. So   it's kind of a natural question of how do we become more efficient and   affective as an operation, and that's what the exercise has been."
 
  According to Hayes, the move will not impact Sega's current schedule,   nor will it affect the number of traditional retail games it releases.   1UP had a chance to speak with Hayes about the company's new direction,   as well as the future of its traditional console games, and will   publish the full interview tomorrow.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on April 22, 2010, 10:57:04 PM
Sega Europe seemed to be more in tune with their fans then Sega America. This should be interesting.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 24, 2010, 10:09:45 PM
Infinity Ward is Dead!!! (http://kotaku.com/5519049/the-studio-behind-modern-warfare-is-dead-insider-says)
Quote
"They're scared shitless," the source said of Activision management.  "They never saw this coming. They can't believe what's going on. At  first they gave us some bullshit about moving up payments of all the  money they owe us to sooner increments. That was when [designer] Todd  [Alderman] and [engineer] Frank [Gigliotti] left. But with the  announcement of Respawn and all the people leaving, they just got there  heads in their hands."
 
 The Infinity Ward insider painted the former bosses in a positive light,  blaming Activision for withholding Modern Warfare 2 payments. "They  fired the two most amazing leaders we've ever seen, and then shafted us  all out of a lot of money that was promised to us...there is nothing  they can do to gain our trust or respect. And I'm pretty sure they know  it now."
 
 "IW as you know it is dead...and it will continue to crumble. There  are a lot more veterans who are definitely going to leave."

supposedly the account is over 20 people leaving IW.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BeautifulShy on April 24, 2010, 11:00:17 PM
Yeah I figured that that was going to happen. I wonder what Respawn is going to work on now?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on April 24, 2010, 11:02:47 PM
Infinity Ward is Dead!!! (http://kotaku.com/5519049/the-studio-behind-modern-warfare-is-dead-insider-says)
Quote
"They're scared ****less," the source said of Activision management.  "They never saw this coming. They can't believe what's going on. At  first they gave us some bull**** about moving up payments of all the  money they owe us to sooner increments. That was when [designer] Todd  [Alderman] and [engineer] Frank [Gigliotti] left. But with the  announcement of Respawn and all the people leaving, they just got there  heads in their hands."
 
 The Infinity Ward insider painted the former bosses in a positive light,  blaming Activision for withholding Modern Warfare 2 payments. "They  fired the two most amazing leaders we've ever seen, and then shafted us  all out of a lot of money that was promised to us...there is nothing  they can do to gain our trust or respect. And I'm pretty sure they know  it now."
 
 "IW as you know it is dead...and it will continue to crumble. There  are a lot more veterans who are definitely going to leave."

supposedly the account is over 20 people leaving IW.

Hopefully, this will lead to Activision's stock tanking over the next week or so.  It's about the best we can expect to bother them at this point.  I feel sorry for those still at Infinity Ward, though I suppose there is the possibility of Activision trying to keep them from leaving with lucrative new contracts.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on April 25, 2010, 01:56:18 AM
Hopefully the talent that's leaving IW will start up some new studio and begin work on the same great games as before. They won't be able to do COD anymore obviously, but they could start a new franchise with a new name that would be more or less identical to COD and that would be just as fine by me.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NWR_insanolord on April 25, 2010, 03:09:52 AM
Hopefully the talent that's leaving IW will start up some new studio and begin work on the same great games as before. They won't be able to do COD anymore obviously, but they could start a new franchise with a new name that would be more or less identical to COD and that would be just as fine by me.

That's exactly what they did last time this happened, creating Call of Duty because they couldn't make Medal of Honor anymore. If EA weren't already rebooting MoH it would be funny to give the IP to Respawn.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Shaymin on April 25, 2010, 07:44:25 AM
Hopefully, this will lead to Activision's stock tanking over the next week or so.  It's about the best we can expect to bother them at this point.  I feel sorry for those still at Infinity Ward, though I suppose there is the possibility of Activision trying to keep them from leaving with lucrative new contracts.
Right now, they're trying to keep people around by giving them the bonuses for the people who left. Of course, once the check clears nothing's stopping them from hooking up with Respawn...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on April 25, 2010, 10:17:37 AM
If they are under contract, then they can't just leave after getting their bonuses.

Let those ungrateful brats leave. Infinity Ward and Activision Blizzard will be fine without them.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on April 25, 2010, 10:50:34 AM
If they are under contract, then they can't just leave after getting their bonuses.

Let those ungrateful brats leave. Infinity Ward and Activision Blizzard will be fine without them.

Why are you taking the side of Activision in this? Why would anyone take their side in this?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 25, 2010, 10:54:33 AM
TJ has a penchant for being on the wrong side of every argument lately.

I think he's in it for the drama
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on April 25, 2010, 11:12:23 AM
No, I am just sick of people acting like this is all Activision Blizzard's fault. Although they share some of the blame, West and Zampella are at fault too.

BlackNMild, I hope you aren't referring to the thread where I thoroughly showed you were wrong but you kept not understanding the facts?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: SixthAngel on April 25, 2010, 11:43:40 AM
No, I am just sick of people acting like this is all Activision Blizzard's fault. Although they share some of the blame, West and Zampella are at fault too.

Really?  Because I thought we had a bunch of he said/she said with Activision being the huge, huge loser if they are found at fault.  What the accusations are and what is at stake makes it seem to me that Activision is the one who is at fault.

Also Activision is insanely late with the bonuses.  Yes, insanely late with the bonuses of the team whose game is one of the biggest of all time.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NWR_Lindy on April 25, 2010, 12:03:13 PM
We really don't know who was at fault at the moment, and that will come out in court I'm sure.  For all we know, both West and Zampella might have been trying to cut a back-door deal with EA to start a new studio as soon as they got their Modern Warfare 2 money.  Activision wouldn't randomly and purposely torpedo Infinity Ward out of nowhere; something had to have triggered the move.  Where Activision blundered was in miscalculating the fallout.  Employees aren't going to sign retaining contracts if they simply don't want to work for you any more, and can make the same money working for their old bosses elsewhere.

I also expect another Activision lawsuit claiming that Respawn poached employees from IW.  That's about the only card that Activision has left to play at this point.

As far as Sega goes, I love it when companies say stuff like, "We've laid off half of our staff...but it's going to be GREAT for our bottom line, and we'll really be able to streamline our business processes now!"  Good for you Sega, good for you.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 25, 2010, 12:34:33 PM
Quote
BlackNMild, I hope you aren't referring to the thread where I thoroughly showed you were wrong but you kept not understanding the facts?
How could you prove me wrong when I wasn't debating you? that just shows how incredibly dense you are. go re-read the topic. I wasn't trying to prove your point wrong, I was stating that you never actually proved your point in the first place. I was trying to help you out.

(http://i49.tinypic.com/200z5nr.jpg)

But back on topic here.....
No, I am just sick of people acting like this is all Activision Blizzard's fault. Although they share some of the blame, West and Zampella are at fault too.

Let's see.

Activision tells IW that they can make a new IP after the MW2 and that IW is the only ones that can make a game under the MW label.

IW finishes MW2, wants to start New IP, Activision says "no, we want MW3 NOW!!!"

IW cites agreement they had before hand

Activison gets pissed.... (Is this related?) Activision withholds bonus payments from MW2 for some reason and refuses to pay the promised bonus until some undisclosed later date.

IW secretly started pre-production on their own IP

Activision finds out and call the 2 IW heads into the office. Fires them on the spot (citing insubordination)

Activision is still holding bonus payments hostage.

several other key IW people leave

Activision brushes off their shoulder

2 exIW heads form new company - Respawn

more IW people leave

Activision starts to panic (supposedly)

even more people leave, some joining Respawn

Activision starts pushing out bonus payments to keep employees

IW people leave anyway.

-That is how I've seen the situation, so I'm not sure how IW is at fault here.
they were promised multiple things that they never got, and when they complained about it, things got even worse., but like Lindy said, the courts will sort it out, right or wrong.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on April 25, 2010, 01:12:57 PM
West and Zampella are arseholes but in the end they're extremely profitable arseholes and apparently very well liked among their staff so where they go, their staff follows. I don't think Activision had a chance to come out of this unscathed though, either they fire the two and have the team leave or the two quit and join EA, prompting the team to follow.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: SixthAngel on April 25, 2010, 01:21:18 PM
You guys aren't saying the elephant in the room.

West and Zampella were supposedly promised exclusive rights to Modern Warfare.

If that is true then that gives Activision every reason in the world to want to fire them for some bull**** reason and negate their contract.  This is the part that pade me think Activision was at fault.  Trying to wrestle that name away seems like he purpose of all the bull**** to me and is par for the course for a company like Activision.  That name is worth a lot of money right now and when suddenly your developer who is supposed to be the only one allowed to make the next one says "No you promised we didin't have to" you start to think of ways to either a) force them to make it or b)take the name back by any means necessary.  It looks like both were tried to me.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on April 25, 2010, 01:47:25 PM
As they say, verbal contracts aren't worth the paper they're written on. Unless they've got it in writing that promise is useless.

Honestly it was stupid of Activision to promise anything like that to them but it also sounds like IW was unwilling to do their fucking job (what do you think Activision paid them for?) without that promise.

If you want creative control work on your own dime, investors want results.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 25, 2010, 02:16:06 PM
You guys aren't saying the elephant in the room.

West and Zampella were supposedly promised exclusive rights to Modern Warfare.

If that is true then that gives Activision every reason in the world to want to fire them for some bull**** reason and negate their contract.  This is the part that pade me think Activision was at fault.  Trying to wrestle that name away seems like he purpose of all the bull**** to me and is par for the course for a company like Activision.  That name is worth a lot of money right now and when suddenly your developer who is supposed to be the only one allowed to make the next one says "No you promised we didin't have to" you start to think of ways to either a) force them to make it or b)take the name back by any means necessary.  It looks like both were tried to me.

Actually I did mention it
Quote
Activision tells IW that they can make a new IP after the MW2 and that IW is the only ones that can make a game under the MW label.

It seems like a really messed up situation.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on April 25, 2010, 05:23:09 PM
Activision is SO ANGRY, they're gonna fire the people who left.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: noname2200 on April 25, 2010, 08:43:29 PM
No, I am just sick of people acting like this is all Activision Blizzard's fault. Although they share some of the blame, West and Zampella are at fault too.

Let's see.

Activision tells IW that they can make a new IP after the MW2 and that IW is the only ones that can make a game under the MW label.

IW finishes MW2, wants to start New IP, Activision says "no, we want MW3 NOW!!!"

IW cites agreement they had before hand

Activison gets pissed.... (Is this related?) Activision withholds bonus payments from MW2 for some reason and refuses to pay the promised bonus until some undisclosed later date.

IW secretly started pre-production on their own IP

Activision finds out and call the 2 IW heads into the office. Fires them on the spot (citing insubordination)

Activision is still holding bonus payments hostage.

several other key IW people leave

Activision brushes off their shoulder

2 exIW heads form new company - Respawn

more IW people leave

Activision starts to panic (supposedly)

even more people leave, some joining Respawn

Activision starts pushing out bonus payments to keep employees

IW people leave anyway.


Serious question: how do you know any of this is true? And are you certain that this is the complete chain of events? If so, how did you manage to get privy to information that the rest of us lack?

As  they say, verbal contracts aren't worth the paper they're written on.  Unless they've got it in writing that promise is useless.

Not actually true; oral contracts are generally as enforceable as their written counterparts, but since it raises the question of credibility it's best to get these things in writing.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 25, 2010, 08:55:12 PM
Serious question: how do you know any of this is true? And are you certain that this is the complete chain of events? If so, how did you manage to get privy to information that the rest of us lack?

I'm pretty sure that everything I stated is posted in this thread. I posted all the IW drama in this thread so just look for my name. But it's just my understanding of the events, obviously all the facts aren't public, but from my point of view IW reacted to Activision not following through with promises made. I can't blame them for speaking up for themselves and looking to get out on their own time.

A few small concessions on Activisions part(such as keeping small promises or paying the bonuses on time) could have prevented this whole situation and kept everyone happy. Activision has no one to blame but themselves as far as I'm concerned, only knowing what has been made public so far.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on April 25, 2010, 11:55:51 PM
This IW drama is so headache inducing.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: SixthAngel on April 26, 2010, 02:16:21 AM
As they say, verbal contracts aren't worth the paper they're written on. Unless they've got it in writing that promise is useless.

I never said it was verbal.  They aren't going to show us the documents but I imagine it has to be written down (along with the bonuses that haven't been given which these two were owed 36 million dollars apparently).  They already had experience being screwed by EA for them to learn what they need and if it wasn't written down I don't see why two guys would burn money in a lawsuit with a giant corporation.

Honestly it was stupid of Activision to promise anything like that to them but it also sounds like IW was unwilling to do their ****ing job (what do you think Activision paid them for?) without that promise.

IW had contract negotiations.  You don't "do your ****ing job" if you don't have a contract because you don't get paid and you don't have a ****ing job.  They had incredible success with previous games and MW so they were able to get a great contract, huge bonuses(profit sharing), and apparently creative control in the MW brand which they started.  They then did their ****ing job and made one of the best selling games of all time.

If you want creative control work on your own dime, investors want results.

If making MW and MW2 aren't results what is?  Which, by the way, they started it and had to fight to start.  Creative control from these guys really kicked those investors in the balls, huh?
Also if you want some creative control you could get something in contract that says, I don't know, you get to make a new series after MW2, like they say they did.  The more successful someone is the more they can demand from investors and the company because they produce results, its not a oneway street.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on April 26, 2010, 02:35:19 AM
Not actually true; oral contracts are generally as enforceable as their written counterparts, but since it raises the question of credibility it's best to get these things in writing.

Yes, without proof that the contract was made you'll have no way of actually enforcing it.

If making MW and MW2 isn't results what is?

Oh, those are results but Activision had a hard time convincing IW to actually make MW2 and now they wanted to see MW3 and IW refused to do that. With full creative control there wouldn't have been an MW2.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: SixthAngel on April 26, 2010, 02:47:27 AM
Oh, those are results but Activision had a hard time convincing IW to actually make MW2 and now they wanted to see MW3 and IW refused to do that. With full creative control there wouldn't have been an MW2.

That is why they negotiated and IW made them the game MW2 in exchange for among other things the ability to make a different game next time.  A game that based on their track record will still make money and possibly start a new profitable franchise and even if it didn't would be worth it to get MW2.  IWs hand in MW was obviously considered extremely valuable.
It seems like a fairly basic deal, each side gets something they want but after Activsion got their piece of the pie they said "Screw you, deals off."
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: noname2200 on April 26, 2010, 01:57:16 PM
Not actually true; oral contracts are generally as enforceable as their written counterparts, but since it raises the question of credibility it's best to get these things in writing.

Yes, without proof that the contract was made you'll have no way of actually enforcing it.

Granted, but proof of some sort is usually pretty easy to come by. A person's testimony is evidence, for example, but more common is to simply point to a pattern of behavior between the parties. Again, it's better to have it in writing, but with a few exceptions it's not absolutely required.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on April 26, 2010, 01:59:43 PM
Judge Judy says you need a written contract ensure payment for services rendered.  The dumb contractor didn't produce a signed work order to protect his ass.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on April 26, 2010, 02:14:54 PM
The way the lawsuit against Activision is worded I think the promise was oral, not in writing. Otherwise they'd have a very easy case against Activision and would be able to ruin the company.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on April 26, 2010, 02:43:39 PM
Good job, Activision.  IW, you're morons.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on April 26, 2010, 02:51:18 PM
Judge Judy says you need a written contract ensure payment for services rendered.  The dumb contractor didn't produce a signed work order to protect his ass.

depends on the state

they are both in California

California Civil Code 1662
1622.  All contracts may be oral, except such as are specially required
by statute to be in writing.

i couldn't find anything in the exception rules about parent companies and bonus agreements, so IW may have a case.



Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on April 26, 2010, 04:47:05 PM
It would be up to West and Zampella to prove anything. If they also refused to to do their jobs (they were employees of Activision Blizzard, NOT members of a independent company), then Activision had just cause to fire them and maybe not pay any bonuses. It doesn't matter if they were told they could work on a non-Call of Duty game, Activision was their boss and got to decide what games they and Infinity Ward would work on.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on April 26, 2010, 04:56:22 PM
It would be up to West and Zampella to prove anything. If they also refused to to do their jobs (they were employees of Activision Blizzard, NOT members of a independent company), then Activision had just cause to fire them and maybe not pay any bonuses. It doesn't matter if they were told they could work on a non-Call of Duty game, Activision was their boss and got to decide what games they and Infinity Ward would work on.

So what you're telling us is that Activision was acting like Hitler and that somehow we're supposed to sympathize with them because their employees got tired of being pushed around and left? Boo freakin Hoo.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on April 26, 2010, 05:51:06 PM
No, I am saying that an employer has the right to fire a employee if the employee refuses to do their job (which is what happened if Activision wanted them to work on Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 and they refused). It's also a little suspicious how quickly they formed their own company and aligned with Electronic Arts after getting fired, like they were planning to do it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NWR_insanolord on April 26, 2010, 06:02:29 PM
Having the history they had, they knew it was possible they'd get screwed, so they probably had a backup plan for making their own new company long before this happened. I'm not saying they were working with EA on it; EA was just smart enough to quickly make them an offer as soon as they were available.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 26, 2010, 06:10:43 PM
No, I am saying that an employer has the right to fire a employee if the employee refuses to do their job (which is what happened if Activision wanted them to work on Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 and they refused). It's also a little suspicious how quickly they formed their own company and aligned with Electronic Arts after getting fired, like they were planning to do it.

Your ignoring the part where IW had renegotiated their contract prior to even starting on MW2(the deal was negotiated to make MW2 in the first place according to the reports) and the deal was that they get to do a new IP after they complete the game.... and there were profits that were to be shared (aka bonus).

Activision ignored this new contract, stomped on the concept for the new IP, denied timely bonus payments(to pay the bonus from the interest earned?) and then fired the heads of the company for complaining about it.

If that's just business as usual, then I will side with IW each and everytime.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: D_Average on April 26, 2010, 07:59:19 PM
The IW v Acti scandal seems like I should be more interesting, but I just can't get into it.  I think GertsmannGate was far more entertaining.   Just sayin.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 27, 2010, 12:09:57 AM
Infinity  Ward Exodus Continues -- Three More Leave Studio, Two Join Respawn (http://g4tv.com/thefeed/blog/post/704228/Infinity-Ward-Exodus-Continues----Three-More-Leave-Studio-Two-Join-Respawn.html)

Quote
Lead character artist Joel Emslie and artists Ryan Lastimosa and Brad Allen are the latest employees at Infinity Ward to hang up their hats and leave the Call of Duty: Modern Warfare developer.

All three now-former employees have updated their Facebook profiles to reflect the recent decision, a source close to Infinity Ward has told me. None have announced their future development plans.

Two others, however, have made a future with their former bosses at Respawn Entertainment official.

Emslie, Lastimosa and Allen's departures arrive just days after a total of eight other Infinity Ward developers turned in letters of resignation. In just a few days, the headcount at the Activision-owned studio has decreased by 11. So far, as predicted by Activision, the pace does not seem to be slowing.

Several employees have made the decision to join up with their former Infinity Ward leadership at Respawn Entertainment, an Electronic Arts-backed new startup. Unlike Infinity Ward, however, Respawn Entertainment controls their intellectual property; EA is only providing the funding.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on April 27, 2010, 02:08:00 AM
TJ, it looks like IW is dropping like flies and they are all going over to the new company. You make it sound like it was just one or two individuals being greedy and selfish and wanting more money and were conspiring to stab Activision in the back. But more and more employees are leaving, so it makes me think conditions must have been pretty bad for so many to leave like that.

It wasn't one or two people being greedy assholes, it was Activision who were the assholes and the entire Infinity Ward crew seems to have had it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on April 27, 2010, 02:41:11 AM
Activision ignored this new contract, stomped on the concept for the new IP, denied timely bonus payments(to pay the bonus from the interest earned?) and then fired the heads of the company for complaining about it.

We don't know if it was an actual contract or just an informal promise. Activision claims that West and Zampella were in talks with EA before they got fired (considering the quick hire that seems likely) and thus likely delayed payments because they knew the moment those bonuses were paid these guys were going to make a run for it. The charge on the firing is for "insubordination", negotiating with a competing company and refusing to obey the orders of the leadership. The negotiations combined with that promise about the MW name sound to me like IW was planning to defect to EA and take the MW name with them.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: SixthAngel on April 27, 2010, 05:38:51 AM
Getting a new job or setting up a new studio is entirely expected.  It isn't fast, but the speed you would expect.  This didn't happen out of the blue so of course they had a plan if or when something happened.  They had obviously been in fights with Activision ever since they wanted to start their promised new IP and the bonuses didn't come on time.  I have a plan for what I will do if I lose my job and I'm getting along great with my employer why wouldn't they?
Also I'm fairly certain these two had headhunters calling them 5 minutes after they were fired.  They could probably have started working the next day.

The lawsuit itself benefits Activsion to such an absurd degree.  Most corporations would do almost anything to get back what Activision gave away. 36 million dollars is enough for most companies to want to screw someone over.  Add in their biggest license and suddenly you have a near guarrentee.  When you look at the history of Activision this seems like the decision they would make.

The fact is Activision fired two employees directly before they would have to pay them millions dollars for the work that they already completed at their company.  I don't understand taking Activisions side.  These two earned that money and their employer is trying not to pay them.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 27, 2010, 11:14:05 AM
Activision ignored this new contract, stomped on the concept for the new IP, denied timely bonus payments(to pay the bonus from the interest earned?) and then fired the heads of the company for complaining about it.

We don't know if it was an actual contract or just an informal promise. Activision claims that West and Zampella were in talks with EA before they got fired (considering the quick hire that seems likely) and thus likely delayed payments because they knew the moment those bonuses were paid these guys were going to make a run for it. The charge on the firing is for "insubordination", negotiating with a competing company and refusing to obey the orders of the leadership. The negotiations combined with that promise about the MW name sound to me like IW was planning to defect to EA and take the MW name with them.

It was said to be a renegotiated contract before the start of MW2 to make MW2.
That renegotiated contract supposedly promised bonus payments, ownership of the Modern Warfare name (or atleast exclusive rights to using it) and the promise of being free to do a new IP when they were done with MW2.

Activision started paying out the bonuses just recently when the mass exodus started, and all this trouble didn't escalate until after the new IP was shot down and MW3 was beign forced upon them. The only think Activision gave them that was promised was exlcusive use of the MW name.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on April 27, 2010, 07:34:02 PM
plus Activision needs to realize that Franchises have HOT moments and then they have warm moments, and even cold moments. MW3 is destined to not be well received because 1st we know what went on, 2nd not the same people, 3rd and if it was the same people their harts wouldn't be in it. Halo fever pitch is pretty much dead now(pretty much because of COD)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 27, 2010, 09:08:43 PM
Activision sued for  up to $125 million by current, former Infinity Ward employees (http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/entertainmentnewsbuzz/2010/04/activision-infinity-ward-employees-lawsuit-call-duty-modern-warfare.html)
Quote
Activision sued for up to $125 million by current, former Infinity  Ward employees
 
 Activision's Call of Duty-related headaches just leveled up.
 
 More than three dozen former and current employees of Infinity Ward, the  Encino-based development studio that made the hugely successful Call of  Duty: Modern Warfare video games for Activision Blizzard Inc., have  sued the publisher claiming that they are owed between $75 million and  $125 million in unpaid royalties and potentially more in compensatory  damages.
 
 ...
 
 Of the 38 employees involved in the lawsuit, 21 are former employees of  Infinity Ward;  17 still work there. Approximately 95 people worked at  Infinity Ward on last November's Modern Warfare 2, meaning that about  40% of its employees at that time are now suing Activision.
 
 ...
 
 The lawsuit says that Activision owes Infinity Ward employees a bonus  pool of at least $118 million, of which $82 million is supposed to go to  employees other than West and Zampella.
 
 It alleges that the publisher has withheld royalty payments in order to  keep them from leaving as their former bosses did, putting at risk the  potentially hugely lucrative release of Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3  planned for late 2011.
 
 "Activision engaged in this inappropriate course of conduct in an  attempt to force employees of Infinity Ward to continue to work at a job  that many of them did not want just so Activision could force them to  complete the development, production and delivery of Modern Warfare 3,"  the suit says.
 It goes on to allege that Activision representatives told Infinity Ward  employees that if West and Zampella had not been fired, the employees  would have received bonuses approximately 2.5 times higher than what  they were paid on March 26.
 
"Activision believes the action is without merit," a company spokesman said in response to the suit. "Activision retains the discretion to determine the amount and the schedule of bonus payments for [Modern Warfare 2] and has acted consistent with its rights and the law at all times. We look forward to getting judicial confirmation that our position is right."
 
 The complaint filed Tuesday in Los Angeles Superior Court in Santa  Monica is based in part on the same allegations contained in West and  Zampella's suit. Isaacs has asked that the two cases be consolidated.
 
 -- Ben Fritz

Bobby.... chew softer or at least turn up the volume!!
(http://i48.tinypic.com/5a5qqg.jpg)

I'm sorry Michael.... Mr. Crabs gave me crispy instead of original.
(http://i50.tinypic.com/c5onr.jpg)

Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on April 27, 2010, 09:17:20 PM
This whole situation is amusing to watch, both sides bickering at each other and calling the others liars. Since almost EVERY lawsuit involving companies involved counter-suits, I wouldn't be shocked if Activision Blizzard counter-sues.

I still side with Activision in this particular situation.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 27, 2010, 09:36:14 PM
I think you are trippin' to side with Activision on this, but your opinion is yours.

If they had a bonus structure set up (some sort of profit sharing) and then they released the profitable 3rd party game ever ($1.3bln in revenue and counting), why not just give them their due and move onto the next project? Why break promises and agreements then try to milk a cash cow dry as quickly as possible?

Imagine how different(read: non-existent) Nintendo would be today had then licensed out and milked Mario to death right after firing Miyamoto so they could keep and control the property. That is exactly what it seems like Activision is trying to do here. Instead of building a lifelong franchise, nurture your talent and create more franchises that continue to give back, they just suck it dry and then move onto the next thing.

Activision is like the Galactus of Gaming. Destroyer of IP's & Devs.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on April 27, 2010, 09:46:55 PM
Unlike the other lawsuits in this fascinating Activision-Infinity Ward legal saga, I have to kind of side with Activision on this one pending any legal paperwork Activision execs may have signed with the remaining Infinity Ward employees.  I'm fine with the 17 who are still working at Infinity Ward getting the bonuses promised them, so if Activision was just promising bonuses it never intended to give, they should be entitled to those bonuses.  I'm not so sure those who are no longer working at Infinity Ward have a case, considering Activision was promising those bonuses to those who remained at Infinity Ward, and obviously they left of their own volition.  Once again, that's just my opinion until we see word of any paperwork Activision may have signed specifying exactly what they promised the Infinity Ward folks.

As for the fate of Modern Warfare 3, I think it's pretty obvious the quality of the game is in jeopardy unless Activision brings in some serious experienced help to shore up all the losses Infinity Ward's suffered since this debacle began.  Whether that would impact sales is another matter entirely: we know what's going on with Modern Warfare 3 and Infinity Ward because we're hardcore gaming enthusiasts and that's just what we do, but I have doubts the average gamers who bought Modern Warfare 2 in such large numbers are so aware of the situation.  I don't see this impacting the franchise much until after Modern Warfare 3 (or any of these Call of Duty spinoff projects) launches and the masses get a taste of just what's happened to the franchise.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on April 27, 2010, 10:28:00 PM
Call of Duty is no more

we're now getting

Court of Duty:  Modern Lawyer
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 27, 2010, 10:34:22 PM
or alternatively

Court of Jury: Modern Lawfare
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on April 27, 2010, 10:51:58 PM
Part of my issue with West and Zampella is that they think they should get millions of dollars in bonuses and control of the "Modern Warfare" subtitle just to do their job. You brought up Shigeru Miyamoto, he would not need Nintendo to pay him millions of dollars just to do his job. If Activisio wanted Infinity Ward to make a Call of Duty game, their ONLY response should have been "When would you like it finished?".
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on April 27, 2010, 10:59:06 PM
Sides aren't necessary in this issue.  Hope they destroy each other.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on April 27, 2010, 11:11:50 PM
I still remember that it wasn't long ago that everyone hated Electronic Arts (but still bought their games), now everyone hates Activision Blizzard (but still buys their games).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NWR_insanolord on April 27, 2010, 11:14:50 PM
EA's gotten a lot better in recent years, and Activision is way worse than EA ever was.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on April 27, 2010, 11:30:31 PM
EA's gotten a lot better in recent years, and Activision is way worse than EA ever was.

Indeed.  EA's made great strides in recent years to develop and maintain new IPs, even if they aren't best sellers right out of the gate.  I doubt Activision would have given Dead Space or Mirror's Edge a second chance (let alone the third that EA's giving it with Dead Space 2).  Hell, EA even took a chance on Brutal Legend, a game pretty much everyone agreed before it released that it stood little chance of becoming a hit.  Activision, though, is like the logical extreme of where EA was before Ricatello took over.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 27, 2010, 11:42:52 PM
Part of my issue with West and Zampella is that they think they should get millions of dollars in bonuses and control of the "Modern Warfare" subtitle just to do their job. You brought up Shigeru Miyamoto, he would not need Nintendo to pay him millions of dollars just to do his job. If Activisio wanted Infinity Ward to make a Call of Duty game, their ONLY response should have been "When would you like it finished?".

Don't forget that IW was with EA before hand. They left formed their own company (IW) mad ea good game and then sold to Activision with promises of whatever that were likely never really realized.

West & Zampella re-negotiated a contract with Activision before starting on MW2. If Activision didn't want to honor that contract, then they never should have made it. They could have told Z&W to go **** themselves and then tell the rest of IW to get started on the game.
But the point is that Z&W made a contract with profit sharing bonuses(& control of the MW name) before the game was made and Activision was holding their earnings hostage beyond the agreed upon payment date.

We haven't seen this contract yet, and likely never will, but I don't see how anyone could be on Activisions side when taking what we've heard so far as fact. Assuming it's all true.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on April 27, 2010, 11:52:14 PM
EA's gotten a lot better in recent years, and Activision is way worse than EA ever was.

You must have forgotten all of the stuff EA did. They had to pay their software engineers $14.9 million and graphic artists $15.6 million because they were classifying them as salaried employees (meaning they make the same amount of money regardless of how much or little they work) so they could force them to work 60+ hour weeks without overtime. Besides the money, they also had to re-classify around 440 employees as hourly employees as hourly employees so they could make overtime. To me, forcing employees to routinely work 60-70 hour weeks with no overtime and being forced  to pay over $30 million in settlement is worse than any of the allegations against Activision Blizzard. Go look back at some of the articles (the settlements were in 2006).

Also, let's not confuse a company's business practices with it's products. A company can have bad business practices, but release good or great games (and vice-versa).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NinGurl69 *huggles on April 27, 2010, 11:55:16 PM
Like I said, Nintendo cursed the James Bond license to ruin any subsequent holder thereafter.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: SixthAngel on April 28, 2010, 12:31:10 AM
I think you are trippin' to side with Activision on this, but your opinion is yours.

I think everyone siding with Activsion is hilarious.

IW employees "We want our bonuses for making MW2."

Activision "We'll give you them after you make MW3."

Activision supporters "Do your job!.  No, not you Activision, you don't have to,  I'm talking about those lazy developers who actually want to be paid."  "If you want to get paid for work you already did you better work more."

Not honoring contracts is non unusual practice for Activision.  Just past experience should make you think they are wrong.
They just lost a lawsuit because they bought out a company making a DJ game before DJ Hero came out.  The company had a contract with another company to make this game and that contract stayed valid no matter who owned them.  Activision then stopped the production of the game, breaking the contract, in an attempt to let DJ Hero get all the attention.
Activision doesn't care about contracts or obligations as long is it sees some possible short term green at the end of the tunnel.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 28, 2010, 12:35:14 AM
I'll do some bolding this time so that the important parts aren't missed.

Modern  Warfare Developers Seek Half a Billion in Activision Suit
 (http://kotaku.com/5525814/modern-warfare-developers-seek-half-a-billion-in-activision-suit-update)

Quote
A group of nearly 40 past and present Infinity Ward developers have banded together to file suit against the publishers of Modern Warfare 2 for half a billion dollars, alleging breach of contract and unpaid royalties, according to court documents obtained by G4 TV.com.

The Infinity Ward Employee Group's suit, which lists 38 plaintiffs including some currently employed by Activision at the Infinity Ward studio, is seeking as much as half a billion in unpaid bonuses, royalties, profit sharing and future profits from games such as Modern Warfare 3 and punitive damages.

The suit alleges, according to G4 TV, that the payments were withheld to prevent employees from quitting Activision.

"In short, Activision withheld the property of the IWEG in an attempt to keep the employees hostage so that Activision could reap the benefit of the completion of Modern Warfare 3
, " according to the suit.

Reached for comment Tuesday afternoon, an Activision spokesperson refuted the allegations:

"Activision believes the action is without merit," the spokesperson said. "Activision retains the discretion to determine the amount and the schedule of bonus payments for MW2 and has acted consistent with its rights and the law at all times. We look forward to getting judicial confirmation that our position is right."
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on April 28, 2010, 12:40:14 AM
Also, let's not confuse a company's business practices with it's products. A company can have bad business practices, but release good or great games (and vice-versa).

Last time I checked, it was a good business practice (but risky) to create and maintain new IPs so you can continually diversify your product line and keep your consumers from becoming fatigued with any one of your older products.  EA could have spent the last few years coasting by on their EA SPORTS franchises and some of their legacy franchises like Command & Conquer and Medal of Honor.  But instead they formed Visceral and turned out new IPs like Mirror's Edge, Dead Space, and Dante's Inferno.  Hell, two of those sold relatively poorly (one of them twice), and they're getting another chance next year with new sequels.  They had to go through quite a bit of legal Hell to acquire Brutal Legend, including all that licensing for the old Heavy Metal music.  They made an effort to develop something worthwhile for the Wii with the two Boom Blox games.  They also hooked up with Bioware and Pandemic.  Sure, not all of these ventures panned out (especially with Pandemic having to be closed), but it at least shows that EA's been trying to improve its image and give itself a more stable future.

By comparison, Activision's openly just been trying to milk the same franchises over and over again until there's nothing left to exploit, they have a horrendous public image, and they're led by a man who's stated that his goal upon joining Activision was to take all the fun out of making games.  Just about all they've done right from a PR standpoint is leaving Blizzard alone to make their games as they see fit (and even then they've meddled a bit, such as splitting StarCraft II into 3 $60 PC releases).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 28, 2010, 12:56:55 AM
::brings out the gas can::


Quote from: G4TV
The other shoe has now dropped. 

I've obtained a copy of a lawsuit filed this morning in the Los   Angeles Superior Court by 38 plaintiffs, calling themselves the   "Infinity Ward Employee Group," against Activision. The Infinity Ward   Employee Group (whom I'll refer to as IWEG throughout the rest of this   story) alleges breach of contract, breach of the implied covenant of   good faith and fair dealing, violation of California labor code and   more. The group is after a large amount of unpaid royalties.

"Activision owes my clients approximately $75 million to $125 million   dollars," said Bruce Isaacs, one of the IWEG's attorneys at Wyman &   Isaacs LLP, over the phone this afternoon. "Activision has withheld   most of the money to force many of my people to stay, some against their   will, so that they would finish the delivery of Modern Warfare 3.   That is not what they wanted to do. Many of them. My clients' entitled   to their money. Activision has no right to withhold their money -- our   money."

The IWEG contains "a significant portion of the members of the   creative team" who "designed, developed and delivered" Call   of Duty: Modern Warfare 2  (http://g4tv.com/games/ps3/61714/call-of-duty-modern-warfare-2/index/)  to Activision. According to the lawsuit, $28 million has been   delivered to Infinity Ward employees for bonuses related to Modern   Warfare 2, but the suit alleges at least $54 million is still due   from 2009 profits alone.

They want more than $54 million, however. The IWEG is looking "to   recover between $75 million and $125 million, if not more, in   compensatory damages." That number's derived from:


  • Unpaid bonuses from 2009 and 2010 sales generated by Modern   Warfare 2 -- fourth quarter 2009 and first quarter 2010,   specifically.
  • Bonuses "due and owing to them" past first quarter 2010.
  • "Bonus/royalty/profit participation" related to   "technology/engine" royalties, "other special performance bonuses,"   "other studio bonuses" or "any other bonus/royalty/profit   participation."'
  • Lost value on "restricted stock units" that Activision   "promised" would vest (read: own it in your own name and purchase it   from Activision) when Modern Warfare 2 sales eclipsed Modern   Warfare 1, which "has long ago occurred."
  • Money owed as it relates to Modern Warfare 2 "sister   games, including but not limited to" the oft-mentioned Modern   Warfare 3, "if Modern Warfare 3 is ultimately delivered   and marketed."
  • Interest rates related to the above sums of money.
  The lawsuit focuses on royalties generated for Modern Warfare 2   following release and the agreement between Infinity Ward employees and   Activision for receiving the subsequent bonuses. The IWEG contends the   only condition for becoming eligible for said bonuses was delivering Modern   Warfare 2 in time for the game's intended November 10, 2009   launch. Modern Warfare 2 did launch as scheduled on November 10   last year, generating $1.1 billion in 2009.

Modern Warfare 3
has been mentioned during the legal   back-and-forth between ex-Infinity Ward leadership Vince Zampella and   Jason West and Activision, and it's brought up again here, too.

The IWEG alleges Activision has "improperly withheld this   specifically identifiable sum of money from the members of IWEG in order   to force them to keep working for Activision so that Activision could   receive delivery of Modern Warfare 3." The suit alleges   Activision "made a calculated, purposeful and malicious decision" to   withhold proper bonuses "in an attempt to force employees of Infinity   Ward to continue to work at a job that many of them did not want just so   Activision could force them to complete the development, production and   delivery of Modern Warfare 3."

The legal language gets harsher, too.

"In short," reads the lawsuit, "Activision withheld the property of   the IWEG in an attempt to keep the employees hostage so that Activision   could reap the benefit of the completion of Modern Warfare 3."
What does the IWEG want in return? "At least in the additional amount   of $75 million to $500 million as an award for punitive damages,"   continues the lawsuit, citing a number calculated from the blockbuster   sales of Modern Warfare 2 and "Activision's net worth."

The IWEG also believes Activision violated California Labor Code   during their alleged failure of payment.
"Activision has a duty to pay all of the members of the IWEG all of   the money they are owed [...] within 72 hours of the termination of   their employment," reads the lawsuit. "Activision, however, has failed   to do so."

source: http://g4tv.com/thefeed/blog/post/704273/UPDATE-38-Infinity-Ward-Employees-File-Lawsuit-Against-Activision-Over-Royalties-Alleges-Devs-Held-Hostage.html (http://g4tv.com/thefeed/blog/post/704273/UPDATE-38-Infinity-Ward-Employees-File-Lawsuit-Against-Activision-Over-Royalties-Alleges-Devs-Held-Hostage.html)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on April 28, 2010, 01:09:11 AM
::brings out the gas can::


Quote from: G4TV
The other shoe has now dropped. 

I've obtained a copy of a lawsuit filed this morning in the Los   Angeles Superior Court by 38 plaintiffs, calling themselves the   "Infinity Ward Employee Group," against Activision. The Infinity Ward   Employee Group (whom I'll refer to as IWEG throughout the rest of this   story) alleges breach of contract, breach of the implied covenant of   good faith and fair dealing, violation of California labor code and   more. The group is after a large amount of unpaid royalties.

"Activision owes my clients approximately $75 million to $125 million   dollars," said Bruce Isaacs, one of the IWEG's attorneys at Wyman &   Isaacs LLP, over the phone this afternoon. "Activision has withheld   most of the money to force many of my people to stay, some against their   will, so that they would finish the delivery of Modern Warfare 3.   That is not what they wanted to do. Many of them. My clients' entitled   to their money. Activision has no right to withhold their money -- our   money."

The IWEG contains "a significant portion of the members of the   creative team" who "designed, developed and delivered" Call   of Duty: Modern Warfare 2  (http://g4tv.com/games/ps3/61714/call-of-duty-modern-warfare-2/index/)  to Activision. According to the lawsuit, $28 million has been   delivered to Infinity Ward employees for bonuses related to Modern   Warfare 2, but the suit alleges at least $54 million is still due   from 2009 profits alone.

They want more than $54 million, however. The IWEG is looking "to   recover between $75 million and $125 million, if not more, in   compensatory damages." That number's derived from:


  • Unpaid bonuses from 2009 and 2010 sales generated by Modern   Warfare 2 -- fourth quarter 2009 and first quarter 2010,   specifically.
  • Bonuses "due and owing to them" past first quarter 2010.
  • "Bonus/royalty/profit participation" related to   "technology/engine" royalties, "other special performance bonuses,"   "other studio bonuses" or "any other bonus/royalty/profit   participation."'
  • Lost value on "restricted stock units" that Activision   "promised" would vest (read: own it in your own name and purchase it   from Activision) when Modern Warfare 2 sales eclipsed Modern   Warfare 1, which "has long ago occurred."
  • Money owed as it relates to Modern Warfare 2 "sister   games, including but not limited to" the oft-mentioned Modern   Warfare 3, "if Modern Warfare 3 is ultimately delivered   and marketed."
  • Interest rates related to the above sums of money.
  The lawsuit focuses on royalties generated for Modern Warfare 2   following release and the agreement between Infinity Ward employees and   Activision for receiving the subsequent bonuses. The IWEG contends the   only condition for becoming eligible for said bonuses was delivering Modern   Warfare 2 in time for the game's intended November 10, 2009   launch. Modern Warfare 2 did launch as scheduled on November 10   last year, generating $1.1 billion in 2009.

Modern Warfare 3
has been mentioned during the legal   back-and-forth between ex-Infinity Ward leadership Vince Zampella and   Jason West and Activision, and it's brought up again here, too.

The IWEG alleges Activision has "improperly withheld this   specifically identifiable sum of money from the members of IWEG in order   to force them to keep working for Activision so that Activision could   receive delivery of Modern Warfare 3." The suit alleges   Activision "made a calculated, purposeful and malicious decision" to   withhold proper bonuses "in an attempt to force employees of Infinity   Ward to continue to work at a job that many of them did not want just so   Activision could force them to complete the development, production and   delivery of Modern Warfare 3."

The legal language gets harsher, too.

"In short," reads the lawsuit, "Activision withheld the property of   the IWEG in an attempt to keep the employees hostage so that Activision   could reap the benefit of the completion of Modern Warfare 3."
What does the IWEG want in return? "At least in the additional amount   of $75 million to $500 million as an award for punitive damages,"   continues the lawsuit, citing a number calculated from the blockbuster   sales of Modern Warfare 2 and "Activision's net worth."

The IWEG also believes Activision violated California Labor Code   during their alleged failure of payment.
"Activision has a duty to pay all of the members of the IWEG all of   the money they are owed [...] within 72 hours of the termination of   their employment," reads the lawsuit. "Activision, however, has failed   to do so."

source: http://g4tv.com/thefeed/blog/post/704273/UPDATE-38-Infinity-Ward-Employees-File-Lawsuit-Against-Activision-Over-Royalties-Alleges-Devs-Held-Hostage.html (http://g4tv.com/thefeed/blog/post/704273/UPDATE-38-Infinity-Ward-Employees-File-Lawsuit-Against-Activision-Over-Royalties-Alleges-Devs-Held-Hostage.html)

Hmm....I'm wary of the allegation that Activision used these bonus payments to "keep the employees hostage [against their will]", but if these allegations are accurate (and they're specific enough to be very plausible) I'm definitely on the side of the Infinity Ward employees now on this matter.

Considering all these lawsuits (which even if Activision wins will be very costly in legal fees), I'm wondering how the shareholders are going to take this at the next stockholders' meeting.  It seems to me that Activision is going to lose a lot more money now than if they had just paid all this money they promised in the first place, and Infinity Ward would probably in much better shape and well on their way to making Modern Warfare 3 by now.  As it is, Activision will probably have to close the studio and consolidate the remaining employees in a major restructuring while dealing with all these lawsuits, and meanwhile Modern Warfare 3 still isn't being worked on.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: noname2200 on April 28, 2010, 01:14:31 AM
It would be up to West and Zampella to prove anything. If they also refused to to do their jobs (they were employees of Activision Blizzard, NOT members of a independent company), then Activision had just cause to fire them and maybe not pay any bonuses. It doesn't matter if they were told they could work on a non-Call of Duty game, Activision was their boss and got to decide what games they and Infinity Ward would work on.

Not actually true: employment contracts bind the employer just as much as they do the employee, and if the alleged contract existed and stated that West and Zampella had freedom to make another IP, Activision could not order them to continue making a CoD game without breaching the contract. Of course, just because one side breached, doesn't mean the other side automatically gets everything it was promised. I'd love to learn the details on this case (and not just the allegations made in complaints and PR statements: are the complaints even verified?  :-\ )
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: noname2200 on April 28, 2010, 01:19:29 AM

It seems to me that Activision is going to lose a lot more money now than if they had just paid all this money they promised in the first place, and Infinity Ward would probably in much better shape and well on their way to making Modern Warfare 3 by now.  As it is, Activision will probably have to close the studio and consolidate the remaining employees in a major restructuring while dealing with all these lawsuits, and meanwhile Modern Warfare 3 still isn't being worked on.

Assuming that IW's allegations are true, paying the bonuses would not have led to MW3 anyways, and IW's heads would have been able to shut down that spigot at any time.

I think that's part of why I'm so skeptical that the alleged contract contains the terms that IW says it does: agreeing to those terms essentially shuts down the CoD milking machine, and I don't see Bobby letting that happen.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on April 28, 2010, 01:20:41 AM
the employee contract depends on whether or not the employee were with the company before the company was bought by Activision
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on April 28, 2010, 01:35:35 AM
Assuming that IW's allegations are true, paying the bonuses would not have led to MW3 anyways, and IW's heads would have been able to shut down that spigot at any time.

I think that's part of why I'm so skeptical that the alleged contract contains the terms that IW says it does: agreeing to those terms essentially shuts down the CoD milking machine, and I don't see Bobby letting that happen.

No, I think the two founders would have left anyway (even if they hadn't been fired), but they are the only ones who had control over the Modern Warfare IP at Infinity Ward.  The rest would have to work on whatever Activision assigned them, which obviously would have been Modern Warfare 3.  Now, as usually happens Infinity Ward would likely have had some employees quit to join Respawn, but if Activision is laying on the promised cash and keeping Infinity Ward a pleasant place to work at, perhaps they could have lessened the bleeding and kept it a working studio.  Instead, Activision chose to make it a hostile workplace, and as a result we seem to be getting a new report every day of more employees leaving Infinity Ward for ventures elsewhere and meanwhile it's a dead studio that can't possibly be working on anything right now.  If these allegations are true, it's just not smart business on Activision's part, as if they learned nothing from EA's internal relations problems from years prior.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: SixthAngel on April 28, 2010, 01:42:07 AM
I think that's part of why I'm so skeptical that the alleged contract contains the terms that IW says it does: agreeing to those terms essentially shuts down the CoD milking machine, and I don't see Bobby letting that happen.

It doesn't shut down the  CoD machine, only the Modern Warfare machine.  Remember that these agreements were made a long time ago when this team had brought boack CoD and only the the first MW was a success so it wasn't really a franchise yet.  They might not have wanted to make yearly MW installments as well at the time since the different CoD would essentially cannablize each other.

Activision (I'll leave Blizzard out since it is supposedly seperate in many ways) is a different company now.  Guitar Hero just crashed, DJ Hero never took off, Tony Hawk's new game was crap.  CoD is their only big money maker right now and I doubt the other CoD games will be able to pull in MW numbers.  Its importance to the company just skyrocketed.

No, I think the two founders would have left anyway (even if they hadn't been fired),

I'm not sure.  If they were paid the money promised and allowed to make a new IP as promised I don't see why they would have wanted to leave and all the evidence of them leaving that we have involves them being treated like crap.  There could be other circumstances of course, there are a lot of reasons want to work at your own company after all, and getting millions of dollars so you have the chance is certainly up there.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: noname2200 on April 28, 2010, 01:58:37 AM
the employee contract depends on whether or not the employee were with the company before the company was bought by Activision

Probably not true, since most employment contracts contain a clause which states that the employee contract is assignable. Even if these contracts lacked such a term, there was apparently a contract extension after the first Modern Warfare, so the point is moot.


No,  I think the two founders would have left anyway (even if they hadn't  been fired), but they are the only ones who had control over the Modern  Warfare IP at Infinity Ward.  The rest would have to work on whatever  Activision assigned them, which obviously would have been Modern  Warfare 3. 
 
  That's the contradiction I'm talking about: IF the old IW chiefs had  retained "creative control" of all CoD games from the Vietnam War and  onwards, development of MW3 would have required at the very least their  consent to proceed. Activision could not have assigned their team to  make MW3 without materially breaching the contract.



It  doesn't shut down the  CoD machine, only the Modern Warfare machine.   Remember that these agreements were made a long time ago when this  team had brought boack CoD and only the the first MW was a success so  it wasn't really a franchise yet.  They might not have wanted to make  yearly MW installments as well at the time since the different CoD  would essentially cannablize each other.

My last statement was ambiguous: what I meant was that, if West and Zampella are being truthful and they had a valid contract with the terms they are alleging, the CoD series could only have contained pre-Vietnam War era games without first requiring West and Zampella's consent. In my mind, that means more WWII, and possibly Korean War, games. I don't think the series would last anywhere near as long if it limits itself to those terms.

 
 
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on April 28, 2010, 01:59:18 AM
Don't forget World of Warcraft, that can keep Activision alive pretty much indefinitely and then there's future boosts like Starcraft 2.

This whole situation is amusing to watch, both sides bickering at each other and calling the others liars. Since almost EVERY lawsuit involving companies involved counter-suits, I wouldn't be shocked if Activision Blizzard counter-sues.

They already filed a counter-suit for the first suit brought by West and Zampella. Apparently you have to file a counter-suit within X days of a suit or you lose any ability to sue over it so you can expect Activision to file a counter-suit on everything.

You must have forgotten all of the stuff EA did. They had to pay their software engineers $14.9 million and graphic artists $15.6 million because they were classifying them as salaried employees (meaning they make the same amount of money regardless of how much or little they work) so they could force them to work 60+ hour weeks without overtime. Besides the money, they also had to re-classify around 440 employees as hourly employees as hourly employees so they could make overtime. To me, forcing employees to routinely work 60-70 hour weeks with no overtime and being forced  to pay over $30 million in settlement is worse than any of the allegations against Activision Blizzard. Go look back at some of the articles (the settlements were in 2006).

That's standard practice in the games industry, I've heard of cases (Sierra, I think?) where employees were forced to falsify their timesheets (a felony) to hide their overtime. EA is the big publicized case but you can assume that practically every developer did that back then.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 28, 2010, 02:19:32 AM
Word from the Lawyerz;

Quote
"In a lawsuit where Activision is refusing to produce a witness to substantiate its claims, today's new lawsuit by 38 Infinity Ward employees makes clear that Activision's accusations against Jason and Vince are completely false, Schwartz said in a statement given to IGN. " It's great to see the other Infinity Ward people sticking up for themselves. Hopefully Activision will realize that the time has come to live up to its promises."
http://ps3.ign.com/articles/108/1086448p1.html
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: SixthAngel on April 28, 2010, 02:39:19 AM
Word from the Lawyerz;

Ubisoft's new game made by ex IW emplyees.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on April 28, 2010, 03:27:38 AM
Imagine Party: Lawyerz
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 28, 2010, 11:43:19 AM
Activision boss quits (http://)
Quote
No, not THAT Activision boss...

CEO and president of Activision Publishing, Mike Griffith, has resigned from both positions.

Griffith will, however, continue to serve as vice chairman of Activision Blizzard, which will see him take an active part in board and internal strategy meetings.

An official statement from Activision says that the move will see an annual salary of $250,000 for Griffith's plus discretionary bonuses.

And there we have our first Golden Parachute....

anyone wanna place a bet on how long it takes for Kotick to deploy his?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on April 28, 2010, 12:51:11 PM
They already filed a counter-suit for the first suit brought by West and Zampella. Apparently you have to file a counter-suit within X days of a suit or you lose any ability to sue over it so you can expect Activision to file a counter-suit on everything.

I'm not sure on that. Maybe they changed the law or the type of suit, but there have been cases where companies waited months to countersue.

BlackNMild, what are you talking about? He didn't leave the company, just resigned as CEO. He is still with the company as vice chairman of the board of directors. This has happened before (and not just at video game companies), someone resign from one position but staying with the company.

And why would Kotick leave? As KDR stated, World of Warcraft alone is huge, bringing them over $100 million a month. The company isn't in trouble, even if they somehow lose the suit (which I doubt).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 28, 2010, 01:19:56 PM
Umm he resigned from a CEO position to go sit on a board, that is his stepping down from a place of direct command and getting that comfy corner office in that other building.... away from the employees. They gave him the easy way out with a fat paycheck.

I imagine it as the polite way to pull someone out of the day to day decision making without embarrassing him or your company and making the transition as painless as possible.
They moved him out of the way. That is a golden parachute.

Just like Kutaragi getting that corner office after having to resign from head of bankrupting. He eventually moved on (I think), but they basically put him out to pasture with a comfy desk and a fat paycheck.


edit: Remember that Kotick already cashed out a bunch of his stock near the end of last year. I think he's ready and waiting on his Golden Parachute too.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on April 28, 2010, 01:52:05 PM
Kutaragi became "honorary chairman", Griffith is still a member of the board of directors and that still involves regular work. As I said, this kind of thing happened a lot (even in healthy companies with no scandal).

As for Kotick, did you ever think he just wanted to make a huge profit? The stock was at about $1 a share when he originally bought them in 2000, it was up to $12 when he sold the shares. He still owns about 1.4 million shares (about $16.8 million worth) of Activision Blizzard stock.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 28, 2010, 02:08:59 PM
I don't see why you refuse to accept it for what it looks like. Griffith stepped down voluntarily after probably being nudged by all the other board members. They wanted to move him out of the line of fire and golden parachuted him to safer grounds. Now he's secure, in the boardroom, away from Kotick (who will likely be falling on the sword for this should it turn out as ugly as it looks like it could) and with a very healthy paycheck too.

Should they can Griffith later for events happening today, they can do it quietly behind the scenes.

With everything that's been revealed about this case so far, I hope IW wins BIG, Kotick takes most of the public lashing and the corporate black eye and next generation Activision shows that they learned their lesson (Like EA did last gen) and turn a new leaf (like EA this gen). Some other Giant MegaCorp. Inc. can take the role of bad guy and we repeat the process all over again.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: vudu on April 28, 2010, 02:16:53 PM
Before you two start going at each other's throats again, I'd like to remind everyone to please be civil.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on April 28, 2010, 04:39:22 PM
BlackNMild, please stop speculating on what you think happened. I am trying to stick with facts, not guess what happened. You don't know why Griffith stepped down. It isn't a big deal anyways, it would be like if the head of Rare left. He was only the head of Activision Publishing, not Activision Blizzard.

I hope Activision wins the suit and shuts up those whiners. For once I hope Pachter is right (he is predicting that Activision will shut down Infinity Ward after they finish the next map pack DLC).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 28, 2010, 06:02:17 PM
It's more than a coincidence that he "quit" his high ranked position to take something less involved during the middle of a PR disaster that could cost the company over $100million to 1/2 a Billion dollars. Lets not be naive.

I'm going with the story as it has been released so far (you know the facts of the case<as released by court documents> that you so conveniently seem to ignore.... and not just on this topic) to put 1 + 1 together to get 2.

It would be an incredible coincidence for the CEO and Head of Publishing who had direct contact & influence with IW on a daily basis to have stepped down the day after it becomes public that 40% of IW is now suing the company for deals having to do with publishing. Let me count the ways that this could not be related to each other.....
.....
.....
.....
I couldn't think of one..... could you?


edit:
and 4 more people left IW today
Quote
4 more people leave Infinity Ward today. Near 50%   of dev staff. ETA till IW closure?  Activision earnings report in a   week.
http://twitter.com/georgeb3dr
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on April 29, 2010, 01:22:07 AM
the stamper brothers left rare a while ago
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on April 29, 2010, 09:49:20 AM
Where do you get $500 million from? Even if they somehow lose the suit, they would not lose anywhere near that much. As for why he left, maybe he didn't want to deal with the stress of this moronic lawsuit.

Perm, duh. I know that. I didn't say founder of the company, I said head of the company. The founders of Activision left the company years ago.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on April 29, 2010, 10:47:20 AM
the stamper brothers left rare a while ago
That was when nobody cared about Rare anymore though. IW is becoming another story altogether (abit a very headache inducing one).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 29, 2010, 12:05:17 PM
Where do you get $500 million from? Even if they somehow lose the suit, they would not lose anywhere near that much. As for why he left, maybe he didn't want to deal with the stress of this moronic lawsuit.

Do you ever read the articles....? that is where I'm getting all this info from.
basically it says they are suing for up to 500 million for everything including punitive damages. it helps up be on the same page info-wise when you read what's in the articles. I mean I even bolded it and made the title of the article LARGE so that you couldn't miss it.

I'll do some bolding this time so that the important parts aren't missed.

Modern Warfare Developers Seek Half a Billion in Activision Suit
 (http://kotaku.com/5525814/modern-warfare-developers-seek-half-a-billion-in-activision-suit-update)

Quote
A group of nearly 40 past and present Infinity Ward developers have banded together to file suit against the publishers of Modern Warfare 2 for half a billion dollars, alleging breach of contract and unpaid royalties, according to court documents obtained by G4 TV.com.

The Infinity Ward Employee Group's suit, which lists 38 plaintiffs including some currently employed by Activision at the Infinity Ward studio, is seeking as much as half a billion in unpaid bonuses, royalties, profit sharing and future profits from games such as Modern Warfare 3 and punitive damages.

The suit alleges, according to G4 TV, that the payments were withheld to prevent employees from quitting Activision.

"In short, Activision withheld the property of the IWEG in an attempt to keep the employees hostage so that Activision could reap the benefit of the completion of Modern Warfare 3
, " according to the suit.

Reached for comment Tuesday afternoon, an Activision spokesperson refuted the allegations:

"Activision believes the action is without merit," the spokesperson said. "Activision retains the discretion to determine the amount and the schedule of bonus payments for MW2 and has acted consistent with its rights and the law at all times. We look forward to getting judicial confirmation that our position is right."

And I think we all know they won't likely get that much, but we also know that you go in asking for the moon and the stars but hope you just get more than you probably would've gotten if you didn't ask for more.

And he "quit" for obvious reasons. Don't ignore the pink elephant standing on your foot.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on April 30, 2010, 12:10:46 AM
the stamper brothers left rare a while ago and nobody cared
That was when nobody cared about Rare anymore though. IW is becoming another story altogether (abit a very headache inducing one).

FIXED, they were under MS game studios, but the Stamper Brothers were in charge of all projects. Nobody cared that much because Rare was a shell of a company, but you knew things had to suck in the company when the creative force left. If there are no money hats around I see no reason to leave. Either MS was pissing them off, or they found a better deal, or their retired. That was in 2007..wonder if they've returned to ship?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: D_Average on April 30, 2010, 02:04:36 AM
Speaking of Rare, I was always curious.  Did any of the major leaders from the team that developed Donkey Kong Country move on to do better things with another company?  Whoever worked on that project really nailed it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on April 30, 2010, 10:38:35 AM
Microsoft wastes millions of dollars when they purchased Rare. But I guess when you're the richest company in the world you can throw money around randomly and hope sometimes you get a good hit. Obviously, Rare was a miss.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on May 01, 2010, 01:38:48 AM
Maybe Microsoft will sell its Rare assets back to Nintendo for  $500 :P
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on May 06, 2010, 05:15:37 PM
Respawn picks up four more Infinity Ward vets (http://www.joystiq.com/2010/04/30/respawn-picks-up-four-more-infinity-ward-vets/)
Quote
Respawn picks up four more Infinity Ward vets
 
 Out of the four ex-Infinity Ward employees discovered today to be taking  up positions at Respawn Entertainment, the new home of former IW heads  Jason West and Vince Zampella, two held senior positions and all four  are currently members of the "Infinity Ward Employee Group" suing  Activision for millions of dollars. Preston Glenn ("designer"), Chad  Grenier ("senior designer"), Sean Slayback ("game designer"), and Zied  Rieke ("lead designer) have all confirmed on LinkedIn to have made  the quick switch from their former bosses' studio to their new,  EA-backed startup.
 
 According to G4's report, the tally of Infinity Ward employees that have  joined West and Zampella's still nascent studio is up to 16 as of  today. The studio has seen a flood of employee vacancies in the wake the  co-founders' firings early last month, and a not-so-surprising recent  rush of ex-IW developers jumping on to Respawn's staff. West and  Zampella's new dev house has yet to announce any projects but, well, all  those employees have gotta be up to something.

Infinity Ward HR rep joins Respawn (http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/infinity-ward-hr-rep-joins-respawn)
Quote
Kristin Cotterell, formerly Human Resources Manager and Recruiter at  Infinity Ward, has now signed on as the Human Resources and Recruitment  Manager at Respawn Entertainment.
 Cotterell, who announced her new employer via her LinkedIn profile (http://www.linkedin.com/profile?viewProfile=&key=3705801&authToken=T4z2&authType=OUT_OF_NETWORK&locale=en_US&srchindex=13&pvs=ps&goback=.fps_respawn+entertainment_*1_*1_*1_*1_*1_*1_*1_Y_*1_*1_*1_false_2_R_true_CC,N,I,G,PC,ED,FG,L,DR_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2_*2), previously revealed she was  leaving Infinity Ward last  week (http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/infinity-ward-employees-file-royalty-suit), just as many of her former co-workers were filing a royalty  lawsuit against Activision.
 She is the fifteenth former Infinity Ward employee to publicly follow  Infinity Ward co-founders Jason West and Vince Zampella to their new  venture at Respawn, and should be instrumental in helping the new  company recruit even more talent.

I don't think there are any lead/seasoned employees left.


edit: Activision Q1 2010 Financial Report as today: Kotick Comments (http://www.vg247.com/2010/05/06/actiblizz-q1-2010-financials-infinity-ward-remain-an-important-process-to-call-of-duty/#more-93956)
Quote
Activision president Bobby Kotick’s just said that despite its latest troubles, Infinity Ward “remains an important process” to the Call of Duty IP.
Kotick’s comment came at the start of Activision’s Q1 2010 financial call, and over two months after the   whole blowout began (http://www.vg247.com/2010/03/02/rumour-security-shows-up-at-infinity-ward-studio-bosses-not-seen/) when ex-bosses Vince Zampella and Jason West were fired for “insubordination”.
The call’s ongoing, but expect some comments on the situation. The firm said at the start of the call they’ll answer as much as they can on the situation.

an important process? what is that supposed to mean?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on May 06, 2010, 06:23:18 PM
Has anyone ever noticed the greatest creative minds are also the ones who get labeled "insubordinate"? They're the ones who "think outside of the box" and that often gets them in trouble with the higher ups, but at the same time they're the ones who accomplish great things and revolutionize things.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on May 06, 2010, 09:40:53 PM
Maybe Microsoft will sell its Rare assets back to Nintendo for  $500 :P
Only the IPs and nothing else. Rare is nothing but a hallow shall of it's former self.

Has anyone ever noticed the greatest creative minds are also the ones who get labeled "insubordinate"? They're the ones who "think outside of the box" and that often gets them in trouble with the higher ups, but at the same time they're the ones who accomplish great things and revolutionize things.
Same thing happens with Nintendo too, I can imagine, but on a less grander scale then this drama.

Maybe...?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NWR_insanolord on May 06, 2010, 10:29:25 PM
Has anyone ever noticed the greatest creative minds are also the ones who get labeled "insubordinate"? They're the ones who "think outside of the box" and that often gets them in trouble with the higher ups, but at the same time they're the ones who accomplish great things and revolutionize things.

Apple built a whole advertising campaign around that in the '90s.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on May 07, 2010, 06:06:34 AM
Has anyone ever noticed the greatest creative minds are also the ones who get labeled "insubordinate"? They're the ones who "think outside of the box" and that often gets them in trouble with the higher ups, but at the same time they're the ones who accomplish great things and revolutionize things.

They're supposed to think outside the box of the traditional game design, not outside the box of the employer-employee relationship. You don't see Miyamoto refusing to make a game when Iwata orders him to (see NSMBW, that was ordered by the company heads) and all the authority he gets to throw tea tables around is based on him being a superior to other designers, not being a random renegade. Similarly I've never heard of Will Wright being particularly rebellious. These guys here are more like rock stars, they create one big thing and then bathe in money and fame.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on May 07, 2010, 09:18:24 PM
you don't see Miyamoto doing that, but you do see Shinji Mikami doing that.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NWR_Lindy on May 08, 2010, 11:47:47 AM
All I can say is that the only way you can cause an ENTIRE COMPANY to quit is by screwing them over royally.

West and Zampella were surely popular amongst their colleagues, but you can't tell me that every single one of those 30-ish people had a burning desire to quit their IW job and move over to Respawn just to work with them again.  I'm sure some of those people worked at IW for years, really had a lot of pride in the company, and wouldn't have just uprooted themselves because a couple of people left.  CEOs leave companies all the time, and even the most popular ones don't cause a mass exodus upon their exit.

Mark my words, at some point Activision said, "You're not getting THIS until you do THIS", and everybody at IW was like, "WTF?  Screw that, and screw you, Activision."

Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on July 09, 2010, 12:34:22 PM
Firaxis sees layoffs of about 20-30 (http://kotaku.com/5582531/layoffs-hit-civilization-v-creators)

Quote
Layoffs Hit Civilization V Creators

About 20 people were laid-off from Firaxis, the creators of Civilization V, parent company 2K confirmed to Kotaku today.

Tipsters told us that Firaxis laid off 20 to 30 people yesterday including folks from the quality assurance team, the user interface art team, animators, programmers and designers.


Markus Wilding, global public relations director for 2K, tells Kotaku is was about 20 people.

"I can confirm that Firaxis has realigned its development resources in order to streamline its development process, reduce costs and maximize the overall performance the studio," Wilding told Kotaku. "This will result in the elimination of approximately 20 positions. These reductions will not impact Firaxis' ability to create and deliver AAA titles, including its forthcoming Sid Meier's Civilization V and Sid Meier's Civilization Network for Facebook."

We've also heard that Jesse Smith, a producer on both Civilization IV and a yet-to-be-named secret project, was let go last month.

The layoffs come at a time when Firaxis prepares to release what is starting to look like one of the best editions of its long-loved Civilization series.

Turn-based strategy game Civilization V is due out this September for the PC.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on July 16, 2010, 11:06:20 AM
http://kotaku.com/5587413/rumor-rockstar-lays-off-40-from-red-dead-redemption-team

after a successful launch of a new game too, but I guess this is standard practice for the industry.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on July 16, 2010, 11:39:37 AM
Quote
after a successful launch of a new game too, but I guess this is standard practice for the industry.
except Nintendo :I
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on July 16, 2010, 12:25:00 PM
http://kotaku.com/5587413/rumor-rockstar-lays-off-40-from-red-dead-redemption-team
but I guess this is standard practice for the industry.

Precisely. Develops will hire new employees when they begin a big project and lay off some employees when the project is complete, it's nothing personal. The studio will hire new people when they begin their next project.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on July 16, 2010, 03:43:38 PM
http://kotaku.com/5587413/rumor-rockstar-lays-off-40-from-red-dead-redemption-team (http://kotaku.com/5587413/rumor-rockstar-lays-off-40-from-red-dead-redemption-team)
but I guess this is standard practice for the industry.

Precisely. Develops will hire new employees when they begin a big project and lay off some employees when the project is complete, it's nothing personal. The studio will hire new people when they begin their next project.
How often does this happen to Nintendo? Just want to know.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on July 17, 2010, 03:16:47 PM
Its the crab fisherman way! I know Silicon Knights does this.They do this to make sure they retain the best, and drop the worst.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on July 17, 2010, 07:54:12 PM
Its the crab fisherman way! I know Silicon Knights does this.They do this to make sure they retain the best, and drop the worst.
Since you're the closest to us in the video game development industry Perm, how can one tell who does the best and the worst?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on July 17, 2010, 09:15:34 PM
i wouldn't say I'm any closer to anyone else on these forums, i just read a lot of interviews. SK talked about how it was pretty much standard for them to hire 30 new employees and then probably keep 10 of them after the game was finished. I don't remember where I read this. Probably Gamasutra. I've been in "working on my portfolio and resume mode" for way too long.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kmGzTvh78mM

its really kinda weird. i just watched the making of Tron, and that movie had a budget of 17 million dollars, and all that stuff I could make better and for astronomically less with modern technology. However, It is not like I have a team of people working with me.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Morari on July 18, 2010, 12:45:01 AM
I haven't seen a movie better than Tron in a looong time.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on July 28, 2010, 09:58:25 AM
It's been rumored for awhile, but yesterday Disney announced that they had purchased social gaming company Playdom for $563.2 million. Playdom's games include Social City, Sorority Life, Market Street and Bola.

http://www.industrygamers.com/news/disney-buys-playdom-for-563-million/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on August 02, 2010, 10:34:33 AM
Last week Playlogic filed for the Dutch version of bankruptcy. Last fiscal year they lost $21 million and last quarter they lost $2.1 million.

http://www.industrygamers.com/news/playlogic-is-down-for-the-count/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on August 02, 2010, 09:08:50 PM
It's been rumored for awhile, but yesterday Disney announced that they had purchased social gaming company Playdom for $563.2 million. Playdom's games include Social City, Sorority Life, Market Street and Bola.

http://www.industrygamers.com/news/disney-buys-playdom-for-563-million/

sigh, not the type of business to invest in, its like a bubble about to pop.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on August 03, 2010, 04:34:07 AM
Especially with the growing trends like 'quitting' myspace and facebook. As that shrinks so will the pool of people who would play those games.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on August 03, 2010, 12:52:47 PM
Not really. Many people are attention whores and want some way to share their important thoughts with the world. They'll go to some other social service sooner or later and the expertise for developing social games will still be necessary.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on August 03, 2010, 01:35:31 PM
Also, a recent study shows that more people use social networking sites than ever before (it's up to something like 23%). Even if they migrate, that is why these social gaming publishers want to make their games for multiple sites. I don't think any of them are worth $563 million, but the market won't be going away anytime soon. It may shrink, but I think it will still be viable.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on August 04, 2010, 10:23:46 PM
I guess it is a bit pre-mature to call it an implosion or death for social service sites and games. It just feels stronger for me because I blatantly ignore my facebook page all the time and a high number of my friends are quitting.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on August 05, 2010, 02:48:22 PM
Also, a recent study shows that more people use social networking sites than ever before (it's up to something like 23%). Even if they migrate, that is why these social gaming publishers want to make their games for multiple sites. I don't think any of them are worth $563 million, but the market won't be going away anytime soon. It may shrink, but I think it will still be viable.

Just like reality TV. It all started with that Big Brother show and even though many hoped it would go away, it never did.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on August 05, 2010, 02:49:31 PM
High Voltage Software fires 25 (http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2010-08-05-high-voltage-lays-off-staff). Probably the Tournament of Legends team.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on August 05, 2010, 02:56:11 PM
High Voltage Software fires 25 (http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2010-08-05-high-voltage-lays-off-staff). Probably the Tournament of Legends team.
they should have cancelled that game ages ago and focused on The Grinder.
Sad to hear that people had to lose their jobs though.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on August 05, 2010, 04:26:10 PM
they are a company that is constantly hiring, so id expect they follow crab fisherman rules too
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on August 07, 2010, 02:37:41 AM
High Voltage Software fires 25 (http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2010-08-05-high-voltage-lays-off-staff). Probably the Tournament of Legends team.
they should have cancelled that game ages ago and focused on The Grinder.
Sad to hear that people had to lose their jobs though.

If HVS knew when to cancel a game they wouldn't be one of the biggest shovelware developers around.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: NWR_insanolord on August 07, 2010, 12:46:34 PM
They do the shovelware on contract to an outside company; they don't have the option to cancel those games.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on August 08, 2010, 05:15:40 PM
if they can stay open im sure they invert between shovel ware and the decent games they've been making.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on August 30, 2010, 12:53:37 PM
Playdom has shut down its Acclaim Games brand (they bought it three months ago). For those who don't know, this Acclaim had nothing to do with Acclaim Entertainment. After Acclaim went bankrupt, a man named Howard Marks bought the rights to the Acclaim name and re-launched it as Acclaim Games; it's focus was on MMO games. Playdom is offering a refund to anybody who bought Acclaim Coins (the common currency used in all of their games).

http://www.industrygamers.com/news/acclaim-dies-a-second-death/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on August 30, 2010, 03:40:13 PM
Wow. I never even knew Acclaim had been revived in the first place, so hearing that it died again is really weird. The name is garbage, though. Its not associated with quality games, so why would anyone want it? Atari was a name people knew and loved, so when that name was revived it caught on and remained, but Acclaim? The name Acclaim lacks Acclaim, despite its name.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on August 30, 2010, 03:43:26 PM
To be fair, it was only near the end that Acclaim became associated with bad games. They were one of the most popular publishers from the NES era up to the N64/PS1 era.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on August 30, 2010, 04:26:35 PM
yeah Acclaim at time put out pretty good games, during the n64 era they were pumping out Turok and Wrestling games, although the wrestling games don't hold up today like their competitors wrestling games. Acclaim was always a better publisher than developer though. There was some crossover with Midway, because they published a few of Midways games. Midway is now Warner Bros. Games or whatever.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on August 30, 2010, 04:30:16 PM
I had read this story a day or so ago "Acclaim shut down" and I thought it was really old since Acclaim has been shut down for some time now.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Ian Sane on August 30, 2010, 04:52:50 PM
Acclaim's NES output is overall pretty damn bad.  During that time they just made some of the worst ****.  Acclaim's greatest claim to fame was when they would publish the home version of Midway arcade games.  As an arcade dev Midway was one of the best so it's no surprise that NBA Jam and Mortal Kombat II are such classic SNES games.  The classic gameplay was designed by Midway and Acclaim merely had to not **** up the port job (though they weren't innocent of doing that from time to time).

I knew Acclaim had been resurrected in some form.  I remember hearing about that years ago but I had forgotten about it until now.  I guess their product was just not on my radar.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on August 30, 2010, 05:01:47 PM
I heard Turok was a good game and I remember hearing the hype about it back during the N64 days, but I've never actually played it. I suppose at this point there's no point, because however good it was then its probably horribly dated by today's standards. It would be a good thing if the IPs like that get resurrected, but there's no need for the Acclaim name to continue as such. The name has no connection whatsoever with the company that once was. Just like how the modern Atari is nothing at all like the old Atari company. Of the people who remember the name Acclaim, I don't think there's many who remember it very fondly, or would consider it a quality brand. I certainly don't from my experiences with their games (Midway ports not included).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on August 30, 2010, 05:09:14 PM
Acclaim published the Wizards and Warriors games on NES which gives them points...though those games were made by Rare
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on October 09, 2010, 04:10:51 AM
http://www.gameblurb.net/news/game-studio-n-space-closes-their-doors/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: that Baby guy on October 09, 2010, 04:15:54 AM
http://www.gameblurb.net/news/game-studio-n-space-closes-their-doors/

This one makes me particularly sad, since they're based in Florida.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on October 09, 2010, 06:06:01 AM
Didn't they make most of the handheld CoD games?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ThePerm on October 09, 2010, 06:57:50 AM
the only thing i knew them from was geist, but it seemed like they were on the way up not down...oh well
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Chozo Ghost on October 09, 2010, 05:24:09 PM
Didn't they make most of the handheld CoD games?

Yes. Including the upcoming Black Ops game which comes out November 9th. Now that they're out of business, I wonder what this is going to mean for the game.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: UncleBob on October 09, 2010, 10:13:25 PM
Note: n-Space is not closed.
http://nspaceinc.wordpress.com/2010/10/09/n-space-rumor-control/

Kotaku just sucks at reporting news.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: that Baby guy on October 09, 2010, 11:43:19 PM
Note: n-Space is not closed.
http://nspaceinc.wordpress.com/2010/10/09/n-space-rumor-control/

Kotaku just sucks at reporting news.

Great, thanks for the link!  I'm glad to hear it!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on October 10, 2010, 12:06:26 AM
Note: n-Space is not closed.
http://nspaceinc.wordpress.com/2010/10/09/n-space-rumor-control/

Kotaku just sucks at reporting news.

What did Kotaku have to do with the rumored report?
it was sources close to gameblurb that posted the story. Kotaku reported on the 25 laid off back in August.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Guitar Smasher on October 10, 2010, 01:50:12 AM
Note: n-Space is not closed.
http://nspaceinc.wordpress.com/2010/10/09/n-space-rumor-control/

Kotaku just sucks at reporting news.

What did Kotaku have to do with the rumored report?
it was sources close to gameblurb that posted the story. Kotaku reported on the 25 laid off back in August.
http://kotaku.com/5659586/rumor-geist-call-of-duty-ds-developer-n+space-shuts-down (http://kotaku.com/5659586/rumor-geist-call-of-duty-ds-developer-n+space-shuts-down)

Sure, the rumour originated at gameblurb, but Kotaku was too lazy to fact-check, and just spread the misinformation.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: that Baby guy on October 10, 2010, 01:55:57 AM
In this case, if you call it a rumor, and it is a rumor, true or not, that's not really a case of bad journalism.  However, the fact that Kotaku doesn't seem to have done anything to update anyone on the status of the rumor is relatively negligent, in my opinion.

For comparison's sake, I commented that the rumor existed on my most recent podcast.  As soon as I saw something contradicting it, I went and posted a comment to let people know.  We've not seen anything from Kotaku addressing this yet.  The shoddy journalism is on the fact that they were so eager to quickly report an untrue rumor, but comparatively have not reported on the truth of the matter yet, in any way.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on October 11, 2010, 03:12:20 PM
http://kotaku.com/5661071/singularity-game-developer-hit-with-layoffs
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on October 13, 2010, 12:27:28 PM
Robomodo (developer of Tony Hawk: Ride and Tony Hawk: Shred) president John Tsui has confirmed that the studio have cut some employees. He didn't confirm how many, but Kotaku is saying it's 30-60 people. There are rumors the studio may shut down all-together because they have no other games announced right now and apparently Activision Blizzard have taken the Tony Hawk franchise away from them after the terrible sales and critical reception of their first Hawk game.

http://www.industrygamers.com/news/tony-hawk-developer-hit-with-layoffs/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on October 15, 2010, 01:14:32 PM
http://www.vooks.net/story-19656-Update-Krome-Studios-to-close-on-Monday.html
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on October 15, 2010, 01:17:00 PM
http://www.vooks.net/story-19656-Update-Krome-Studios-to-close-on-Monday.html (http://www.vooks.net/story-19656-Update-Krome-Studios-to-close-on-Monday.html)

I wonder if this means that Blade Kitten will be taken off XBLA and PSN, since its studio will be gone.   :-\   Sure, the game didn't look all that hot, but at the right price I was going to check that one out.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on October 15, 2010, 04:08:17 PM
Nah, they'll probably sell the rights to that and someone else will be making the money people spend on it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on October 27, 2010, 08:06:19 PM
Report: NBA Elite Being Moved to Tiburon, EA Canada Hit by Layoffs (~100 people axed)
http://www.1up.com/news/report-nba-elite-moved-tiburon

Source: EA 'Roll-Offs' Lead to Cuts at EA Canada and EA Black Box; As Many as 100 Affected
http://www.shacknews.com/onearticle.x/66215?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: MaryJane on October 27, 2010, 08:18:13 PM
I didn't read all the posts on here so maybe someone else made these points but there are two things that are causing layoffs everywhere in every industry.

1. The recession has taught companies that they can do more with less

2. We're actually starting to see technology take over for people's jobs, which contributes to my first point.

I think all of this is less a Game Industry Death Watch, than the same kind of restructuring that's going on everywhere. Unless I missed somewhere that viable IP's are being canceled, I believe this to be the case.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on October 27, 2010, 08:27:37 PM
considering EA conbined two devs that worked on seperate things, and then their refresh of the NBA LIVE series (NBA Elite) was a buggy mess from hell and NBA Jam got unassociated with it. Not to mention that now EA doesn't have a NBA simulation game to go with this seasons NBA season since NBA Elite has been put on hold indefinitely and I think we all know the real reason why that studio is getting so much fat trimmed.

we can pretend it's because of the economy or that computer are making the games themselves now, but the fact still remains that there are enormous budget games that are underperforming all across the industry and good people are losing their jobs and studios are closing left and right since this generation has started.

coincidence? maybe. but then again, maybe not.


I think it has more to do with HD development in a time where money is tighter due to the down worldwide economy and the value of the dollar having dropped like a rock.
hard times everywhere and pockets zipped up on the consumer side at the same time that big money was being spent on the retail side. bad timing and bad investments.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: noname2200 on October 27, 2010, 09:20:37 PM


I think it has more to do with HD development in a time where money is tighter due to the down worldwide economy and the value of the dollar having dropped like a rock.
hard times everywhere and pockets zipped up on the consumer side at the same time that big money was being spent on the retail side. bad timing and bad investments.

I'm inclined to agree, but what does that say about the future when the next generation is going to be even more expensive, and 3DS games will probably dwarf DS games in terms of development costs?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on October 27, 2010, 09:36:18 PM
Since the investments have already been made and 3DS games will probably cost no more than Wii games of today (which are much cheaper than then HD games still), I think devs should be fine with dev cost on the 3DS.

Assuming the Wii2 is in the range of PS360 plus a little more and PS360 will likely try to stick around for another 3+ years if possible (if Move & Kinect don't bomb), then dev cost probably shouldn't move much on the console front unless things get cheaper from better engines and more know-how.
Like MJ said, they are being forced to do more with less, and the more they get to know the hardware, the easier it is to get the results they were aiming for.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: noname2200 on October 27, 2010, 09:39:54 PM
Since the investments have already been made and 3DS games will probably cost no more than Wii games of today (which are much cheaper than then HD games still), I think devs should be fine with dev cost on the 3DS.


The underlined is my main concern.  Wii development costs are supposed to be just a fraction of HD development costs, but that still translates into several million dollars a peice.  The DS, I understood, averaged under two million per game.  I think the rising tide is going to swallow up far too many small and even mid-sized developers soon, and that saddens me.  I wish we could adopt a more PC-like model, where games with very basic presentations are still embraced by the public if the quality is there (think of how Minecraft thrived next to Starcraft II, for instance).  For some reason though, that idea doesn't seem to float much in the console space...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on October 27, 2010, 09:59:01 PM
Not every game has to hit the budget ceiling, and as you can see, some devs have gotten fairly good results in a relatively short time on the 3DS, so I expect dev cost to average around the cost of a mid level GC game or little more than High level DS games(since the techniques are familiar and alot of the effects are hardwired). And don't forget about the 3DSware market where more simple games will hopefully thrive thanks to lower overhead and digital distro.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Stratos on October 27, 2010, 10:05:55 PM
Plus all of the HD tech and tools are already in place. They were already bought. That cost won't be repeated for games down the line.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: MaryJane on October 27, 2010, 10:09:53 PM
I'm assuming it was a toungue-in-cheek comment, but it's not that computers are are making the games themselves, but when you can use the Unreal engine for every game you make, a lot the 'blanks' are filled in, and you no longer need 3-5 low-level developers to do that grunt work.

I agree that big budgets/bad sales are a factor, but that problem existed last-gen as well, so it can't be the only or even the leading factor.

Games are still selling like hotcakes, but the number of 'hotcake' games has declined, and I honestly think that's more because of bad/uninspired game design than people tightening budgets.

Also, Iwata said the 3DS game development is going to approach Wii costs, that's not something he would say lightly, and I wouldn't presume to know about game development for the 3DS (or any system) than president of Nintendo.

Edit: Ignore the last paragraph I misread BnM's post, but the point is still valid so I'm leaving it in.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on October 27, 2010, 10:27:51 PM
it was a tongue in cheek comment and also it's not just big budget/bad sales, but bigger budgets need bigger sales just to break even. simply selling the same amount as a last gen game but using 3X the budget is not gonna get you a profit in lots of cases.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on November 01, 2010, 11:42:42 AM
It's been confirmed that Square Enix developer IO Interactive has cut some staff, with unconfirmed reports saying the number is around 30. IO Interactive is best known for working on the Hitman games, but they also developed the Kane & Lynch games. The studio also layed off 35 people back in March and it's rumored that they have canceled a game they were working on.

http://www.industrygamers.com/news/kane--lynch-developer-confirms-layoffs/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Shaymin on November 15, 2010, 09:16:56 PM
Not sure if this is the appropriate place to put this, but Craig Harris is leaving IGN effective this Friday. Shut the lights on IGN Nintendo, I guess.

http://www.ign.com/blogs/craig-ign/2010/11/15/saying-goodbye/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on November 15, 2010, 09:37:19 PM
IGN's Nintendo coverage has already declined in quailty.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Caliban on November 15, 2010, 11:59:00 PM
Awwww that's a shame.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: ShyGuy on November 16, 2010, 01:49:39 AM
Adios Craig, you were the last of the good ones.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on November 16, 2010, 12:35:17 PM
He was the only one on Gamescoop who didn't sound like a total douche.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Peachylala on November 16, 2010, 12:54:47 PM
IGN's Nintendo coverage has already declined in quailty.
...it was never that high of quality to begin with...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on November 16, 2010, 01:23:48 PM
Rumor from GAF
Quote
Just heard today that Bizarre Creations have closed. All 200 staff are made redundant.

No, there are no links at the moment..

A sad day :(
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Dirk Temporo on November 17, 2010, 01:08:27 AM
It's BS because Blur was awesome, and the only reason they're getting closed now is because Blood Stone tanked.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on November 17, 2010, 09:51:58 AM
Activision closes Budcat Creations and lays off QA employees (http://ps3.ign.com/articles/113/1134951p1.html)
 
Well, Activision's on a roll, lately, it seems with studio closings.  This one worked on the Wii and PS2 ports of Guitar Hero and Band Hero.  According to the article, that's approximately 88 employees gone.  Looks like probably the death of the music genre for the time being, killed by Activision over the past few years.
 
It's BS because Blur was awesome, and the only reason they're getting closed now is because Blood Stone tanked.

Unfortunately, I never got a chance to play Blur (I don't care for multiplayer-only demos), but the game looked decent if not as good as my favorite Racing game of the year, Split/Second.  What I've seen of Blood Stone from Giant Bomb's Quick Look, though, was not encouraging.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on November 17, 2010, 10:10:07 AM
It's BS because Blur was awesome, and the only reason they're getting closed now is because Blood Stone tanked.

What is your proof that it tanked? The game just came out 2 weeks ago, and I haven't seen any sales numbers yet. In fact, both versions made the top 40 in the UK last week.

brood, the last few Wii GH games have been developed by Vicarious Visions anyways. VV also did the Wii version of Band Hero (Budcat Creations only did the PS2 version). I just checked, the only Wii Guitar Hero game Budcat did was Guitar Hero: Metallica.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Dirk Temporo on November 17, 2010, 02:26:24 PM
I should probably rephrase "tanked" to "didn't perform anywhere near as well as Goldeneye, and I'm not sure why Activision thought it would."
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on November 17, 2010, 03:41:32 PM
It's BS because Blur was awesome, and the only reason they're getting closed now is because Blood Stone tanked.

Blur tanked too (as did Split Second). I don't know why but people just didn't buy those.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on November 17, 2010, 03:52:19 PM
It's BS because Blur was awesome, and the only reason they're getting closed now is because Blood Stone tanked.

Blur tanked too (as did Split Second). I don't know why but people just didn't buy those.

The much more hyped ModNation Racers is likely why those games didn't sell, unfortunately.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on November 17, 2010, 03:55:45 PM
I should probably rephrase "tanked" to "didn't perform anywhere near as well as Goldeneye, and I'm not sure why Activision thought it would."

Again, what is your basis for commenting at all on sales considering the game is only two weeks out. How do you know how well the game is selling?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: Dirk Temporo on November 18, 2010, 01:40:21 AM
I know VG Chartz isn't the most reliable of sources, but even with ballparking recent numbers, Goldeneye has posted almost twice the number of sales on the Wii than Blood Stone across two platforms.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: DAaaMan64 on November 20, 2010, 04:23:44 AM
Ever play split-second? The mechanic doesn't work, the driving physics are weird and the experience is meh.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: KDR_11k on November 20, 2010, 08:26:39 AM
http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2010-11-20-bizarre-situations-article (http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2010-11-20-bizarre-situations-article)

An analysis of the whole Bizarre Creations situation.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on January 20, 2011, 12:03:50 PM
Perhaps a new thread should be made for 2011.

Today Disney announced that they are shutting down Propaganda Games, whose most recent game was Tron: Evolution.

http://www.industrygamers.com/news/disney-officially-shuts-down-propaganda-games/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: broodwars on January 20, 2011, 12:16:06 PM
Perhaps a new thread should be made for 2011.

Today Disney announced that they are shutting down Propaganda Games, whose most recent game was Tron: Evolution.

http://www.industrygamers.com/news/disney-officially-shuts-down-propaganda-games/ (http://www.industrygamers.com/news/disney-officially-shuts-down-propaganda-games/)

From what I've heard of Tron: Evolution, this is not a studio I'll be missing.  Hopefully, those in the studio with talent and vision will find work with other studios.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010
Post by: TJ Spyke on January 20, 2011, 12:18:29 PM
Their only other game was Turok, which got mixed reviews. They were also working on a Pirates of the Caribbean game that got canceled in October.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: Stratos on January 20, 2011, 05:45:34 PM
That wasn't the Pirates MMO that got canceled, was it?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: TJ Spyke on January 20, 2011, 05:54:00 PM
I think so.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 21, 2011, 05:27:32 AM
I think this new belongs in here.... but I'm not sure.

Konami Preparing Hudson Takeover
http://www.andriasang.com/e/blog/2011/01/20/konami_hudson_takeover/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: TJ Spyke on January 21, 2011, 10:02:46 AM
Since Konami already technically owns it (as 54% makes it owner), will this have any real impact? I am not being sarcastic, I am honestly wondering.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 21, 2011, 02:38:20 PM
They are discussing on whether to change the name and are sending over Konami management to run Hudson.

Chances are that Hudson will no longer be Hudson anymore.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: nickmitch on January 21, 2011, 03:09:31 PM
Owning most of a company and all of it are technically two different things (at least in the US). Hudson could still run somewhat autonomously, but now their CEO is stepping down.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: KDR_11k on January 22, 2011, 02:15:57 AM
Meh, Hudson has been pretty much a low-quality company so if anything they'll likely get better.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: TJ Spyke on February 04, 2011, 01:54:08 PM
It looks like after having sold Harmonix, Viacom is shutting down their games division MTV Games. They have shut down the studio, with the only remaining staff being a few financial people to take care of outstanding receivables (money they are owed by others). http://www.industrygamers.com/news/mtv-games-shutting-down---report/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: TJ Spyke on February 08, 2011, 01:15:11 PM
Harmonix is cutting 12-15% of its full time staff 240-person staff. http://www.industrygamers.com/news/rock-band-developer-cuts-12-to-15-percent-of-staff/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 09, 2011, 03:57:26 PM
Looks like Activision has killed Guitar Hero
http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2011-02-09-activision-kills-guitar-hero

and just days after new screen shots and some positive impressions, looks like they axed True Crime: Tokyo too.
I just seen screen shots I think 2 days ago and word was that it was shaping upto be better than GTA. I wonder why the quick turn around to cancellation, assuming that this is all true ofcourse.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: TJ Spyke on February 09, 2011, 04:07:50 PM
Wait, they claim that the franchise is done in the first paragraph and then spend the rest of the article saying it's NOT done.

As for True Crime, if that is true then I am disappointed. I wasn't thrilled about what was known, but I liked the idea of a GTA type game in Tokyo.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: TJ Spyke on February 09, 2011, 05:13:53 PM
Nevermind, Activision Blizzard just confirmed it themselves. They are disbanding the GH group and ceasing development on the 2011 game. http://www.industrygamers.com/news/activision-refocusing-on-call-of-duty-blizzard-killing-guitar-hero-true-crime/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: Stratos on February 09, 2011, 05:18:54 PM
Wow. Looks like this is the end of an era. With GH gone Rock Band might be able to keep on chugging for a while.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: TJ Spyke on February 09, 2011, 05:20:08 PM
Maybe not though. The Rock Band has been struggling for awhile, and now they now longer have a publisher (EA just distributes the games, I suppose they could publish it now too).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: KDR_11k on February 10, 2011, 10:42:10 AM
If Activision keeps cutting away franchises and developers they may end up cutting their Activision part entirely and being just Blizzard...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: noname2200 on February 10, 2011, 01:31:52 PM
If Activision keeps cutting away franchises and developers they may end up cutting their Activision part entirely and being just Blizzard...

I could live with that.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: Morari on February 10, 2011, 01:49:01 PM
If Activision keeps cutting away franchises and developers they may end up cutting their Activision part entirely and being just Blizzard...

I could live with that.

Maybe ten years ago. I can't even say I have much faith in Blizzard these days. All they want to do is milk their MMO while pushing Battle.net and cutting LAN options out of every other game. Blizzard North was always the best part of the company anyway, and that team doesn't exist anymore...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 11, 2011, 12:20:42 PM
Rumor: Activision planning Take2 TakeOver?
http://www.mcvuk.com/news/43003/Activision-eyeing-Take-Two-swoop

Quote
An eventful week for Activision rolls on: rumours are circulating at the highest level that the company is eyeing a shock acquisition of rival Take-Two.

If true, and if successful, the bid would bring blockbuster brands and hit studios under one roof – Call of Duty and Grand Theft Auto, BioShock and World at Warcraft, all living together.

On Wednesday, Activision proved it isn't afraid to abandon any under performing franchise as it focuses on the best of the best. Adding teams like Irrational and Rockstar Games to its stable would only underline that.

This week it cut short the life of both Guitar Hero and DJ Hero and canceled free-roaming action title True Crime: Hong Kong – but this has left the publisher with gap in its slate of IP which Take-Two's games would capably fill.

"There are very strong rumours amongst people at a very senior level within the global business," a senior executive told MCV this week.
"But there're not much more than that at the moment – they are just rumours. And, of course, given Activision's news this week, everyone is now looking to see what their next move is. But you can definitely put two and two together and make four-ish."

Could this have had something to do with the cancellation of True Crime? The game was getting good impression and was supposedly almost done after all. and then there is also this
Quote
UPDATE: It's also worth noting that while Rockstar and its IP is wholly owned by Take-Two, the contracts of the studio's major talents – including the Houser brothers – is due to expire in 2012.
But that shouldn't affect a future GTA if a True Crime were to come out this year, unless there is a GTA planned for this year too.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: TJ Spyke on February 11, 2011, 12:28:41 PM
I wouldn't put much faith in this, rumors of Activision Blizzard or Electronic Arts buying Take-Two Interactive have been floating around for years. Every time it happens, the stock of T2 goes up but then nothing happens. I am not saying it won't happen, but this is a rumor that pops up every year.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 11, 2011, 12:47:32 PM
Quote from: MCV Article
If the rumours are true, however, Activision could well be expecting strong resistance from Take-Two. In 2008 EA attempted a hostile takeover of the publisher valued at around $2bn – an amount that represented a hefty premium over the company's actual share value.

Take-Two though remained resolute in its defiance of the move, ignoring several extended deadlines and public statements of intent from EA boss John Riccitiello. Take-Two's then executive chairman Strauss Zelnick branded the bid as "inadequate".


Of course, that was 2008. In the time that has followed there have been changes at Take-Two, most notably the increased stake of media magnate and billionaire Carl Icahn. In 2010 it was rumoured that Icahn, who is a former chairman and now a major shareholder of rental chain Blockbuster, was prepping Take-Two for acquisition.

Different people with more power means different motivations for/against selling.
not saying this rumor is gonna come true, but 2008 was then and this is now.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: KDR_11k on February 12, 2011, 03:04:14 AM
They'd just buy it and then cut away the 90% that isn't focused on making more sequels. At this rate Activision is the cancer that is killing gaming.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: Stratos on February 12, 2011, 06:29:02 AM
They'd just buy it and then cut away the 90% that isn't focused on making more sequels. At this rate Activision is the cancer that is killing gaming.

Wasn't that EA's title last gen?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: KDR_11k on February 12, 2011, 08:42:13 AM
Yeah but they got better.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: Chozo Ghost on February 13, 2011, 08:35:51 AM
Maybe not though. The Rock Band has been struggling for awhile,

But now that Guitar Hero is gone their struggling days may be over. Their most serious competition is now gone. This means they now more or less have a monopoly on the genre.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: nickmitch on February 13, 2011, 01:37:14 PM
But they'd have to convert people from GH, and losing your DLC and having to use peripherals that aren't the most compatible is gonna be a tough sell.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: Stratos on February 13, 2011, 04:46:58 PM
I thought the controller compatibility matter was pretty much resolved?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: nickmitch on February 13, 2011, 07:08:50 PM
It has been, but the button colors are out of order and not all peripherals are cross compatible, though most of them are.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: TJ Spyke on March 01, 2011, 01:12:25 PM
THQ has said they are letting go 14 people from their THQ Australia branch, bringing the studios total down to 60 employees. Most of the games they develop are family licensed games like those based on Megamind and Avatar: The Last Airbender. Apparently most of them were people in the art department.
http://www.industrygamers.com/news/thq-australia-cuts-19-percent-of-workforce/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: broodwars on April 01, 2011, 04:54:30 AM
Sony Online Entertainment has confirmed (http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/108895-UPDATE-SOE-Closing-Studios-Cutting-205-Staff) that they are closing their Seattle, Tucson, and Denver studios and laying off 205 employees.  In the process, the long-delayed spy-based project "The Agency" has been canceled in favor of *sigh* 2 new MMOs based on Planetside and EverQuest.  Because the world just needs more MMOs for World of WarCraft to bury.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 01, 2011, 10:15:03 AM
I did a little searching to make sure this wasn't a April Fools Joke or something
but it looks legit. checked the twitter, Kotaku is their original source for your article and 1up also covered the tweet.
http://twitter.com/georgeb3dr

http://www.1up.com/news/spy-mmo-the-agency-canned-amid-layoffs
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: NWR_insanolord on April 01, 2011, 01:09:44 PM
If they redid Planetside but made it free to play it could be pretty awesome. It was a cool idea, but no one's going to pay $15 a month for a FPS.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on April 01, 2011, 01:25:46 PM
If they redid Planetside but made it free to play it could be pretty awesome. It was a cool idea, but no one's going to pay $15 a month for a FPS.

Looks to Activision with planned CoD Online.....
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: KDR_11k on April 02, 2011, 03:41:33 AM
Planetside has a chance of standing out, Everquest is dead on arrival though.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: broodwars on May 04, 2011, 09:37:36 PM
Split/Second developer Black Rock Studios has announced (http://www.joystiq.com/2011/05/04/report-split-second-dev-black-rock-studio-facing-layoffs/) they are laying off 40 employees as well as canceling the sequel to Split/Second (which was in pre-production).  Disney, I lay the blame for this at your feet.  You could have pushed Split/Second back a month or so and gotten it out of the way of Blur and Mod Nation Racers, and the game probably would have done well.  Instead, the 3 games released at virtually the same time and killed each other's sales.  Split/Second was an awesome racing game, and I usually hate racing games!  Now we aren't going to see a Split/Second 2, and the developer is laying off employees.  I hope you're pleased with yourself.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: Oblivion on May 04, 2011, 10:57:41 PM
^Aw, really? I loved both the PSP and PS3 Split/Second. Darn.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: Shaymin on May 05, 2011, 03:06:19 PM
1up acquired by IGN; merging into giant robot producer of Top x lists (http://www.1up.com/news/1up-joins-forces-with-ign).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on May 05, 2011, 03:45:34 PM
1up acquired by IGN; merging into giant robot producer of Top x lists (http://www.1up.com/news/1up-joins-forces-with-ign).

Mix this news with the fact that IGN's parent company NewsCorp. (same company that owns FoxNews & MySpace) just acquired UGO and is trying to spin IGN off as it's own entity, and you can see that Newscorp is making sure that IGN will have plenty of support to hold itself up on it's own 2 feet.
http://mediamemo.allthingsd.com/20110501/news-corp-s-ign-buys-hearsts-ugo-in-preparation-for-game-site-spin-off/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: NWR_insanolord on May 05, 2011, 08:02:49 PM
1up's been a shell of its former self since the mass firing a couple years back. Still, I'd take that over merging with IGN.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: broodwars on May 05, 2011, 08:04:49 PM
At this point, the only reason I go to 1up.com is for the Active Time Babble podcast and the occasional review.  I hope the podcast gets to stick around at least, since IGN doesn't have an equivalent show.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: Stratos on May 05, 2011, 08:05:21 PM
I view it as a chance for some of the little guys to shine and gain some ground.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: Shaymin on May 05, 2011, 09:15:36 PM
At this point, the only reason I go to 1up.com is for the Active Time Babble podcast and the occasional review.  I hope the podcast gets to stick around at least, since IGN doesn't have an equivalent show.

Neither does 1up. The ATB staff are all over at GamePro doing "RolePlayer's Realm", a successor in spirit show.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: broodwars on May 05, 2011, 09:18:56 PM
At this point, the only reason I go to 1up.com is for the Active Time Babble podcast and the occasional review.  I hope the podcast gets to stick around at least, since IGN doesn't have an equivalent show.

Neither does 1up. The ATB staff are all over at GamePro doing "RolePlayer's Realm", a successor in spirit show.

Ah, I'd wondered what happened to ATB.  I guess I'll check out this new show now.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010/2011
Post by: broodwars on July 02, 2011, 10:03:55 PM
Well, add one more studio closure to the pile, as Disney has announced (http://xbox360.ign.com/articles/118/1180200p1.html) that they are closing critically-acclaimed developer Black Rock Studios.  God damn it, Disney, Black Rock did everything right last year with Split/Second.  The game was a quality game very well-received by critics, but was screwed over by you when you released it against two other big racing games in the same week.

Yeah, I'm just a tad bit bitter over this.  Split/Second is one of the most fun games I've played this generation (and I usually dislike racing games), and the game failed through little fault of its own.  It was simply one of the many casualties of a racing game scheduling cluster**** and Red Dead Redemption.  Had it been pushed up or back a month, I think we would have seen a very different result.  I hope that the former employees managed to somehow wrangle the Split/Second license away from Disney, so when they eventually form their own studio they can do a proper sequel...or at least make a game in that same vein and spirit.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on January 15, 2012, 01:15:21 PM
Apparently THQ has cancelled their Warhammer 40k MMO and all projects slated for 2014 and later.
Supposedly trying to sell themselves off to the highest any bidder and even returned IP to Disney after paying the advance.
https://twitter.com/TheKevinDent
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on January 15, 2012, 02:18:16 PM
Apparently THQ has cancelled their Warhammer 40k MMO and all projects slated for 2014 and later.
Supposedly trying to sell themselves off to the highest any bidder and even returned IP to Disney after paying the advance.
https://twitter.com/TheKevinDent (https://twitter.com/TheKevinDent)

EA or Activision might buy them out. Whichever one wants access to THQ's wrestling and sports contracts.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on January 15, 2012, 03:01:24 PM
I'm not sad to see them go; their recent WWE 12 game was absolute garbage.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on January 15, 2012, 03:06:11 PM
I'm not sad to see them go; their recent WWE 12 game was absolute garbage.

I feel sorry for the people behind the Saints Row games. I hope that series and its developers go to a good home.

It appears as though the poor reception of Homefront is what drove them over the financial edge. I wonder if Nintendo and Retro Studios could hire some developers from THQ? Perhaps for a new western company?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: broodwars on January 15, 2012, 03:33:50 PM
Homefront sold very well.  If anything, I think it's the double failure of Saints Row 3 and Red Faction Armageddon that really hurt this year.  A fair amount of money got dumped into both, and IIRC neither sold well.  Armageddon even sold so poorly that THQ discontinued the entire franchise.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kairon on January 15, 2012, 03:36:09 PM
Oh geez, if only Nintendo could work out a way to bankroll a second Retro...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on January 15, 2012, 04:02:11 PM
Homefront sold very well.  If anything, I think it's the double failure of Saints Row 3 and Red Faction Armageddon that really hurt this year.  A fair amount of money got dumped into both, and IIRC neither sold well.  Armageddon even sold so poorly that THQ discontinued the entire franchise.

Correction: THQ's stock dropped by 26% during the Homefront launch. I belive that Crytek took over the Homefront series. That games was not bad, but it suffered because the industry is suffering from FPS fatigue. 
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: broodwars on January 15, 2012, 04:54:17 PM
Homefront sold very well.  If anything, I think it's the double failure of Saints Row 3 and Red Faction Armageddon that really hurt this year.  A fair amount of money got dumped into both, and IIRC neither sold well.  Armageddon even sold so poorly that THQ discontinued the entire franchise.

Correction: THQ's stock dropped by 26% during the Homefront launch. I belive that Crytek took over the Homefront series. That games was not bad, but it suffered because the industry is suffering from FPS fatigue.

Geez, Kytim, you make this too easy...

Link: Homefront sales exceed 1,000,000 copies (http://www.gamespot.com/news/homefront-sales-top-1-million-shipments-over-24-million-6305653).

That took me a whopping 2 minutes on Google, and only that long because I stopped to read something else.  Homefront sold exceedingly well, just not to the level of something like a Call of Duty or Battlefield.  Most developers would kill to have a million-seller, so that's pretty good for a new IP.  THQ brought in Crytec to make a better game with the sequel.  As the article explains, THQ's stock dropped because investors expected the game to flop after the review scores started coming out.

EDIT: Interesting...if you believe VGChartz data (I don't), Saints Row 3 has actually done very well for itself.  Red Faction alone couldn't have brought THQ to this, so I wonder what else has been flopping.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kairon on January 15, 2012, 05:10:32 PM
Well, if I recall U Draw 2 flopped pretty hard. And I think I've read that THQ HAS been having a lot of difficulty continuously over these past years, due to both flops and underperformances.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on January 15, 2012, 05:15:27 PM
The premise of Homefront is incredibly stupid. North Korea becomes a super power overnight and invades the United States? WTF?! The country is poor and practically starving to death, and its military, although large in numbers, is largely equipped with vintage obsolete WW2 era weaponry. The whole concept of the game is just a joke.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on January 15, 2012, 05:19:53 PM
The premise of Homefront is incredibly stupid. North Korea becomes a super power overnight and invades the United States? WTF?!

The villian of the game was originally China. The recent remake of Red Dawn had China as the villian too and MGM had to go back and change the Chinese flags to those of North Korea in order to appease our new masters. Honestly, I wish that Call of Duty would do a new world war series centered around China trying to dominate the world.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on January 15, 2012, 05:23:00 PM
The premise of Homefront is incredibly stupid. North Korea becomes a super power overnight and invades the United States? WTF?!

The villian of the game was originally China. The recent remake of Red Dawn had China as the villian too and MGM had to go back and change the Chinese flags to those of North Korea in order to appease our new masters. Honestly, I wish that Call of Duty would do a new world war series centered around China trying to dominate the world.

Of all the countries in the world, I think China is the most plausible to be able to invade the USA, but even they aren't quite there just yet.

That said, if the game was altered to not offend them I think that's pretty sad. Its not like COD was ever too afraid of offending Russia by having them as the antagonists.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on January 15, 2012, 05:31:31 PM
The premise of Homefront is incredibly stupid. North Korea becomes a super power overnight and invades the United States? WTF?!

The villian of the game was originally China. The recent remake of Red Dawn had China as the villian too and MGM had to go back and change the Chinese flags to those of North Korea in order to appease our new masters. Honestly, I wish that Call of Duty would do a new world war series centered around China trying to dominate the world.

Of all the countries in the world, I think China is the most plausible to be able to invade the USA, but even they aren't quite there just yet.

Here is an alarming video on Homefront:
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SH5pqGx80Ok (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SH5pqGx80Ok)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on January 15, 2012, 05:43:47 PM
The premise of Homefront is incredibly stupid. North Korea becomes a super power overnight and invades the United States? WTF?! The country is poor and practically starving to death, and its military, although large in numbers, is largely equipped with vintage obsolete WW2 era weaponry. The whole concept of the game is just a joke.

Actually, it was North and South Korea unifying and taking over other countries before going after the US. Besides, I could name hundreds of games with more stupid premises. The premise of a game has nothing to do with how it plays. The game is also set in the future, not the present.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: broodwars on January 15, 2012, 05:44:45 PM
The premise of Homefront is incredibly stupid. North Korea becomes a super power overnight and invades the United States? WTF?! The country is poor and practically starving to death, and its military, although large in numbers, is largely equipped with vintage obsolete WW2 era weaponry. The whole concept of the game is just a joke.

Just one correction here: in the game, North Korea doesn't become a super power overnight.  The game lays out a timeline of events taking place over the course of the (then) 16 years until the year 2027 (which is when the game begins).  I've seen speculation that if the events in that timeline actually occurred in that order exactly as written, the events depicted in Homefront could occur.  The problem is that those events rely on an incredible amount of stupidity on the part of just about every other nation in the world (particularly in the U.S. not responding to any of North Korea's aggression against our allies), so the chances of that invasion being plausible are extremely unlikely if not impossible.  So yeah, the idea of a North Korean invasion is absurd, but it is a theoretical possibility contingent on extremely unlikely events occurring in a very specific order.

Frankly, I find the idea of a North Korean invasion in the future just about as absurd as the Russians invading America because a single American gunman was found dead in the aftermath of a Russian airport shooting. *cough*ModernWarfare2*cough*  And yet that game doesn't get as much scrutiny.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on January 15, 2012, 05:57:36 PM
The premise of Homefront is incredibly stupid. North Korea becomes a super power overnight and invades the United States? WTF?! The country is poor and practically starving to death, and its military, although large in numbers, is largely equipped with vintage obsolete WW2 era weaponry. The whole concept of the game is just a joke.

Just one correction here: in the game, North Korea doesn't become a super power overnight.  The game lays out a timeline of events taking place over the course of the (then) 16 years until the year 2027 (which is when the game begins).  I've seen speculation that if the events in that timeline actually occurred in that order exactly as written, the events depicted in Homefront could occur.  The problem is that those events rely on an incredible amount of stupidity on the part of just about every other nation in the world (particularly in the U.S. not responding to any of North Korea's aggression against our allies), so the chances of that invasion being plausible are extremely unlikely if not impossible.  So yeah, the idea of a North Korean invasion is absurd, but it is a theoretical possibility contingent on extremely unlikely events occurring in a very specific order.

Frankly, I find the idea of a North Korean invasion in the future just about as absurd as the Russians invading America because a single American gunman was found dead in the aftermath of a Russian airport shooting. *cough*ModernWarfare2*cough*  And yet that game doesn't get as much scrutiny.

What if a future FPS game like Call of Duty dealt with China marching on the world?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: broodwars on January 15, 2012, 06:03:43 PM
What if a future FPS game like Call of Duty dealt with China marching on the world?

Sure, why not?  If it takes place in the future (thus allowing us newer and more interesting weapons and scenarios than "modern warfare"), I'd be all for it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on January 15, 2012, 06:05:59 PM
Just one correction here: in the game, North Korea doesn't become a super power overnight.

I knew its something like that, but that's still way too short of a time for a 3rd world backwater to rise up to a position where it could conquer not only South Korea and Japan, but also the USA. That is kinda as stupid as the notion of the USA becoming a global power 16 years after its independence and then invading Great Britain. Sure the USA is powerful enough to do that now, but a mere 16 years after independence? So I didn't mean overnight literally, but 16 years is still a very small amount of time as far as history is concerned.

Not to mention that the Japanese aren't exactly a people who are known to surrender easily, so I think that game's notion that Japan folds and gets annexed without a fight is absurd.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on January 15, 2012, 06:25:11 PM
Just one correction here: in the game, North Korea doesn't become a super power overnight.

I knew its something like that, but that's still way too short of a time for a 3rd world backwater to rise up to a position where it could conquer not only South Korea and Japan, but also the USA. That is kinda as stupid as the notion of the USA becoming a global power 16 years after its independence and then invading Great Britain. Sure the USA is powerful enough to do that now, but a mere 16 years after independence? So I didn't mean overnight literally, but 16 years is still a very small amount of time as far as history is concerned.

Not to mention that the Japanese aren't exactly a people who are known to surrender easily, so I think that game's notion that Japan folds and gets annexed without a fight is absurd.

It has taken China about thirty years to go from a country pretty much in the stone age to an economic juggernaut that is nipping at the heels of the US. Who knows where they will be in two more decades?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on January 15, 2012, 06:38:36 PM
Just one correction here: in the game, North Korea doesn't become a super power overnight.

I knew its something like that, but that's still way too short of a time for a 3rd world backwater to rise up to a position where it could conquer not only South Korea and Japan, but also the USA. That is kinda as stupid as the notion of the USA becoming a global power 16 years after its independence and then invading Great Britain. Sure the USA is powerful enough to do that now, but a mere 16 years after independence? So I didn't mean overnight literally, but 16 years is still a very small amount of time as far as history is concerned.

Not to mention that the Japanese aren't exactly a people who are known to surrender easily, so I think that game's notion that Japan folds and gets annexed without a fight is absurd.

It has taken China about thirty years to go from a country pretty much in the stone age to an economic juggernaut that is nipping at the heels of the US. Who knows where they will be in two more decades?

The stone age? Did you know China is the country which invented paper, the compass, and gunpowder? Heck, if anything they were one of the very first countries to emerge OUT OF the stone age.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Lithium on January 15, 2012, 07:21:16 PM
I think he just means china getting out of the hole Mao/colonialism dug them in. Anyways as far as the plot of home front goes i very rarely take video game plots seriously because when i actually think about the plot as I'm playing it usually ruins it for me since i can probably count all the videogames with plots that are actually good (and not just by the low bar of "for a videogame") with my fingers on one hand.


anyways as Kytim said eariler I feel sorry for the saints row team, at first it was kind of a poormans GTA but the 3rd one looked like a fun game that embraced it's sillyness. Too bad i dont have an HD system to play it on.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on January 15, 2012, 07:26:38 PM
Just one correction here: in the game, North Korea doesn't become a super power overnight.

I knew its something like that, but that's still way too short of a time for a 3rd world backwater to rise up to a position where it could conquer not only South Korea and Japan, but also the USA. That is kinda as stupid as the notion of the USA becoming a global power 16 years after its independence and then invading Great Britain. Sure the USA is powerful enough to do that now, but a mere 16 years after independence? So I didn't mean overnight literally, but 16 years is still a very small amount of time as far as history is concerned.

Not to mention that the Japanese aren't exactly a people who are known to surrender easily, so I think that game's notion that Japan folds and gets annexed without a fight is absurd.

It has taken China about thirty years to go from a country pretty much in the stone age to an economic juggernaut that is nipping at the heels of the US. Who knows where they will be in two more decades?

The stone age? Did you know China is the country which invented paper, the compass, and gunpowder? Heck, if anything they were one of the very first countries to emerge OUT OF the stone age.

I was refering to China getting out of the hole that colonialism and communism dug for them. I once collaborated on a project at my college for a economic and political science convention centered around China's rise in the last thirty years.
 
Well, let's get this back on topic.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: ThePerm on January 21, 2012, 04:23:49 PM
lol, ill get into this discussion later

but a short, China is non-aggressive. The average Chinese person wants to buy you not kidnap you...if that is a good enough analogy.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on January 21, 2012, 06:32:05 PM
but a short, China is non-aggressive.

Tell that to Tibet.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Lithium on January 21, 2012, 07:50:15 PM
sooo... how 'bout dem videogame studios shutting down?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: oohhboy on January 22, 2012, 01:08:36 AM
Zynga (http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/39747/Analyst_Zynga_is_losing_150_per_new_paying_customer.php?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+GamasutraNews+%28Gamasutra+News%29) looks to be heading towards a slow death as it's business model falters. That is one "Games" publisher I would be happy to consign to the mists of history.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: nickmitch on January 22, 2012, 01:51:15 AM
but a short, China is non-aggressive.

Tell that to Tibet.

This gave me lols.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: oohhboy on May 05, 2012, 05:26:45 AM
An in depth look into the death of Free Radical (http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2012-05-04-free-radical-vs-the-monsters).

I am surprised any games get made, let alone good ones considering how dysfunctional the developer/publisher relationship is.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Caliban on May 05, 2012, 06:38:21 PM
I am surprised any games get made, let alone good ones considering how dysfunctional the developer/publisher relationship is.

Indeed, oohhboy. Have you read the anonymous stories that get sent in to the Penny Arcade's newest creation? The Trenches: http://trenchescomic.com/tales/post/9810
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: oohhboy on May 05, 2012, 07:36:55 PM
Yeah I read every single one and I can relate. Power hungry idiots, zero tolerance rule use, ignorant bosses, hopeless coworkers, useless procedures without reason. Not something just confined to the software industry, but it certainly magnified in it since it draws in people with passion, something to give and it slams into a wall of soulless MBAs.

When a game is buggy I know it's not QA fault most of the time. I have sent in my share of bug reports that thankfully got fixed. But here a quick example of how not to do QA with your customers. It's a link to the Trendy forums on Steam (http://forums.steampowered.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=1240), the guys who made Dungeon Defenders. Why you ask? It's the broken bug process in action. I didn't link to the main forums because it gets worse.

On the Mac, for a lot of people the game doesn't run at all, me included, It has been like this for months and it didn't have to be like this. You see they had a Beta period for the Mac and people quickly started logging bugs with them. It became pretty obvious that the game wasn't ready to go gold on Mac since it had multiple show stopping and performance bugs. 24 hours later they released the game to the general public as is without warning or a single fix. Day one, I gave them my bug reports.

Week after week go by without a fix for most of these bugs while the company releases DLC after DLC after DLC barely testing them, more often than not breaking the game in the process. Bug reports flood in and patches get released daily. But there is another problem. Because of how the game engine is set up, the files have to be overwritten wholesale, rather than modifications made. So when you want to tweak a number, the tweak becomes a 100  MB patch. Not only that, the Beta/bug testing process has been captured by a select few instead of being a public consultation process, so you got a bunch of idiots railroading whatever balance changes they want instead of taking care of basic stability issues. The developers in an attempt to be "Responsive" bows before them meaning even if they wanted to take care of the basics, they are too busy making balance changes and cranking out DLC to do proper fixes. Since patch speed is the measure of a good patch, once a balance change is made it goes live in hours, wasting hundreds of MB of bandwidth, GBs in a week, then the rollback comes when the patch breaks the game too much and starts affecting some of those testers. Then they break the patching process itself requiring the entire game to be rolled back.

The testers then defend the game tooth and nail since they now control the game. The developers then hide behind these people, have an opaque debugging process where finding the "Right" channels is the key or else nothing gets fixed. The poor tech support guy on the forums can offer nothing more than "turn off the sound". They had some significant technological debt when they first released, but they never took the time to repay it or even maintain it. Actual, proper, methodical testing is non-existant. So now even on the PC side the game is starting to collapse under it's own weight.

It's on a bundle right now, but please don't buy it or this game especially if your on a Mac. It will cause only grief.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Uncle_Optimus on May 06, 2012, 03:25:34 PM
An in depth look into the death of Free Radical (http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2012-05-04-free-radical-vs-the-monsters).

I am surprised any games get made, let alone good ones considering how dysfunctional the developer/publisher relationship is.

Thanks for the link.
Indeed, it is likely no coincidence that we see so many recent stories about developers swearing off publisher relationships now that they have self-publishing platforms to release on.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on August 17, 2012, 05:48:15 PM
So OnLive has laid off ALL of its employees, yet the company somehow claims they are "just fine". I don't know any companies that fires its entire staff and is fine.

http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/176180/OnLive_lays_off_all_employees.php
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: broodwars on August 17, 2012, 05:49:21 PM
So OnLive has laid off ALL of its employees, yet the company somehow claims they are "just fine". I don't know any companies that fires its entire staff and is fine.

http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/176180/OnLive_lays_off_all_employees.php (http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/176180/OnLive_lays_off_all_employees.php)

Well, obviously the employees now reside in the Cloud as well.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Shaymin on August 17, 2012, 06:02:36 PM
Apparently the company froze so they had to turn it off and back on again.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on August 17, 2012, 07:36:16 PM
OnLive? I thought they were doing quite well?


It doesn't matter if OnLive goes down, because Sony now owns Gaikai, so the future of cloud gaming is still bright. Now if only the internet companies removed bandwidth caps and lowered prices / raised speeds...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on August 17, 2012, 07:49:20 PM
Cloud gaming will never be big, the whole idea is bad. You essentially just rent the game, even when you "buy" it. You lose the games if the service shuts down, and you can't even play your games if the Internet goes down. Add in that broadband is still not available everywhere (it's expensive for the providers to add it to rural areas). OnLive was doing OK, but not that great.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: BranDonk Kong on August 17, 2012, 08:55:20 PM
They only laid off AT LEAST HALF of their employees, they're just fine!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on August 17, 2012, 09:16:26 PM
Cloud gaming will never be big, the whole idea is bad. You essentially just rent the game, even when you "buy" it. You lose the games if the service shuts down, and you can't even play your games if the Internet goes down. Add in that broadband is still not available everywhere (it's expensive for the providers to add it to rural areas). OnLive was doing OK, but not that great.


The same negative points can be said of Netflix, Pandora Radio, Spotify, and countless other streaming services.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on August 17, 2012, 10:00:21 PM
Except those are all subscription services, there is a huge difference. You aren't paying to get individual movies or songs. You aren't paying $20 to essentially rent a movie (and with Netflix, you can get physical discs too). And you don't even pay for Pandora, so that is moot for them anyways. With OnLive, you pay $40-$60 to "buy" a game that you have to be online to play and that you lose if/when OnLive goes down.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: MegaByte on August 17, 2012, 10:01:47 PM
It doesn't matter if OnLive goes down, because Sony now owns Gaikai, so the future of cloud gaming is still bright. Now if only the internet companies removed bandwidth caps and lowered prices / raised speeds...
LOL
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on August 17, 2012, 10:45:43 PM
This will never happen, but Nintendo could buy OnLive and use its streaming infrastructure for a cliud based Virtual Console service that charges a monthly or yearly fee for access to their games.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on August 17, 2012, 11:12:21 PM
If OnLive goes down that's just fine.... just means less competition for Ouya. ;)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: SonofMrPeanut on August 18, 2012, 03:53:57 AM
If OnLive goes down that's just fine.... just means less competition for Ouya. ;)


Except Onlive is working with Ouya (http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105-57481285-1/ouya-game-console-adds-onlive-outs-controller/).  So...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on August 18, 2012, 08:02:40 AM
http://mobile.theverge.com/2012/8/17/3250589/onlive-official-layoffs-statement


Onlive has been. Aquired by a newly formed company with substantial funding. Still the rumors are going to hurt them in the long run. I'd still say thieronly true hope is to grab onto one of the big three or steam and that won't happen due. To microsoft not needing them and steam and nintendo not having an intrest in that yet.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on August 18, 2012, 10:43:37 AM
Cloud gaming will never be "big", it will have its niche but will never become the main way of gaming because the negatives outweigh the positives. OnLive's only real positive is being able to play games your PC normally couldn't handle. Maybe have it be a back-up option you get when you buy a retail game (like how many DVD/Blu-ray Discs now come with a free digital copy).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: NWR_insanolord on August 18, 2012, 11:30:46 AM
If they reworked it as a rental service a la GameFly where you paid a certain amount and could play whatever you wanted it would be a lot more attractive. It wouldn't matter anymore that you lose the ability to play when the company goes away if it were just subscription-based. I'm not sure the publishers would let that happen, though.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on August 18, 2012, 05:49:57 PM
If they reworked it as a rental service a la GameFly where you paid a certain amount and could play whatever you wanted it would be a lot more attractive. It wouldn't matter anymore that you lose the ability to play when the company goes away if it were just subscription-based. I'm not sure the publishers would let that happen, though.

So you mean kind of like Netflix, where you pay a subscription and get unlimited streaming?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: broodwars on August 18, 2012, 06:00:11 PM
Cloud gaming will never be "big", it will have its niche but will never become the main way of gaming because the negatives outweigh the positives. OnLive's only real positive is being able to play games your PC normally couldn't handle. Maybe have it be a back-up option you get when you buy a retail game (like how many DVD/Blu-ray Discs now come with a free digital copy).

And people thought the same of television, computers, the internet, film, etc. when they were all first introduced.  I'm not a fan of Cloud gaming, but I do think at some point in the next 20 or so years it will be the status quo.  The technology is just too early right now (broadband penetration is not where it needs to be), and people like us who place importance on physical media still have too great a presence in the marketplace.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on August 18, 2012, 06:05:59 PM
brood, it's not the same. You can still use TV, film, computers, etc. if the Internet is down or the company that makes them shuts down. If you spend $2,000 on "buying" games on OnLive and the service shuts down, you lose all those games forever. Maybe cloud gaming might become supplemental, but I don't see it ever becoming the primary method of content delivery.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: NWR_insanolord on August 18, 2012, 06:07:05 PM
See, I don't care about physical media, I'd gladly buy every game digitally if I had the ability, and even I don't like the idea of cloud gaming right now. I want a local copy, whether it be physical or digital.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on August 18, 2012, 11:45:56 PM
Gamestop should buy OnLive because in a few years Gamestop is going to be obsolete, and OnLive is already in the direction Gamestop will need to go in order to survive, so they might as well just buy it now while its struggling because they can get it for a good price.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: NWR_insanolord on August 19, 2012, 12:18:59 AM
As much as people may hate it, GameStop's not going to be hurting that much from digital distribution anytime soon. They'll be fine for at least a decade, assuming something else doesn't do them in.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on August 19, 2012, 08:49:27 AM
Gamestop already has their own streaming service in the works. In other words onlive is fucked. There is no one left who could be a viable buyer.

 http://www.theverge.com/gaming/2012/8/16/3248074/gamestop-to-launch-cloud-gaming-service-spawn-labs-summer-2013
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Louieturkey on August 20, 2012, 12:38:53 AM
Gamestop's cloud gaming service is closer to a competitor with Steam and Origin, not OnLive.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on August 20, 2012, 07:44:24 AM
http://www.theverge.com/2012/8/20/3254779/htc-loss-onlive-investment

HTC lost $40 million from their investment in onlive. They've been having tons of bad luck lately.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: BranDonk Kong on August 20, 2012, 09:29:35 AM
I used to love HTC, but they are all over the place. They make some pretty solid phones (especially the One Series, EVO Series and DROID Incredible series), but they've made some stupid mistakes like purchasing half of Beats and investing in Onlive.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on August 20, 2012, 09:48:17 AM
I wouldn't call them stupid purchases. Buying them made sense ara time where tootle was pushing its own ecosystem hard and seriously pushing the nexus device. They wanted something to make them different.

And while bad purchases didn't help it also is a by product of its hard to sell a phone in the current market if your not Apple or Sanding. Or have a major partnership with a carrier like verisimilitude and Motorola or att/tmobilr like nokia.

Must sick less than two years ago they were on top of the world with phones like the evo and G2. But theyvdid what sanding is doing now and flooding the market with a to. Of waly phones alongside your big boys.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: BranDonk Kong on August 20, 2012, 10:08:56 AM
Your autocorrect is killing your posts...or you're drunk. They were stupid purchases though, and they're already selling Beats back (or most of what they bought) for less than they paid. It's odd that HTC's market share is so low in the US, since their share of Sprint phones (at least before the GS2, GS3, and iPhone came out on Sprint) had to be quite high (they sold quite a few EVO 4G and EVO 3Ds), though I suppose Sprint isn't exactly the biggest carrier in the US.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on August 20, 2012, 10:37:19 AM
Yeah sprint is the third biggest carrier now due to stupid purchases as well. I. Between the Evo and htc one series there was a lull where hitch was releasing a whole lot of nothing that lost them a lot of consumer confidence. That and they haven't been able to make a good tablet. Both of their android tabs failed and its rumpred they were banned from working on windows tablets.

Sucks as I love my G2.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: BranDonk Kong on August 20, 2012, 12:46:41 PM
You don't have to be banned from making Windows tablets, Microsoft basically fucked all the OEMs with their surface tablet, so many have just dropped the idea.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on August 20, 2012, 02:57:24 PM
This was before the surface was announced. And a lot. Of oems are working on windows 8 tablets. Some like hp and thoshiba are making intel based windows 8 tablet and laptops.

And in addtion to intel tablets there are a few oems working on arm tablets as well.

 http://blogs.msdn.com/b/b8/archive/2012/08/13/collaborating-to-deliver-windows-rt-pcs.aspx


The only oems who have been complaining have been acer. All the other oems have pretty much said bring and we will do better.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on August 20, 2012, 04:26:27 PM
Buying 51% of Beats was not a bad idea, it was pretty good. They still own about 25% of the company (which is doing pretty well), they have just done done as much to integrate music into their services as they should have. Investing in OnLive though, I don't see that as a good move at all.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Louieturkey on August 21, 2012, 02:50:20 PM
Some still see cloud gaming as the future.  OnLive still has a shot at figuring this out.  It may end up being though that they were the pioneers in the field but ultimately, it's another company that makes it mainstream, like how tablets were made before but weren't popular and mainstream until the iPad was released.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on August 21, 2012, 06:11:30 PM
Eh onlive still wouldn't get it any mainstream attention as sony and microsoft have their own cloud solutions and nintendo isn't intrested.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on August 22, 2012, 07:34:26 AM
So Sony shut down its Liverpool studio the one behind wipeout today. A few of the guys are confriming on twitter.

And a few weeks back there were alot or layoffs at Microsoft's new Vancouver studio. The guys who were working in the free to play and kinect section of the studio were let go so the studio could focus on the new hatdcore IP it had been working on. Didn't help that MS Vancouver is right next to MS Bigpark which works on casuel/kinect games and Microsoft recently opened up MS London just for free to play games.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on August 22, 2012, 08:46:13 AM
Would it be appropriate to discuss the demise of Nintendo Power in this thread? Its not a company per se, but it is sorta part of the industry.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on August 22, 2012, 08:57:59 AM
Would it be appropriate to discuss the demise of Nintendo Power in this thread? Its not a company per se, but it is sorta part of the industry.

I guess but there's already a thread and a dev being shut down is more topical. That and all of the NP people are just being transferred.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: broodwars on August 22, 2012, 12:05:19 PM
So Sony shut down its Liverpool studio the one behind wipeout today. A few of the guys are confriming on twitter.

Well, that's a shame. I've never been the biggest fan of Wipeout (the controls just seem very iffy for me considering how fast you're going down the track, & the AI seems almost as rubber-bandy as Mario Kart), but the games have seemed pretty high quality and they've been generally well-received.  I wonder if this is just part of a larger cost-cutting move by Sony, rather than the result of some larger dissatisfaction by Sony in that team's work.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Do_What on August 23, 2012, 11:19:00 AM
Gosh. I liked wipeout, in that "There hasn't been an F-Zero game in 5 years and this is seriously as close as we're ever going to get so I'll take it" kind of way. It does feel like a pure cost cutting measure. Which is a shame, because they seem to be one of Sony's best studios at producing quality portable titles.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: oohhboy on August 23, 2012, 12:04:18 PM
While I never cared for the wipeout series of which they milked to death, I will always remember Psygnosis for it's Colony Wars series on the PSX.

List of way too much Wipeout:
Quote
Games developed as SCE Studio Liverpool
Formula One 2001    2001    PlayStation 2
Wipeout Fusion      2002    PlayStation 2
Formula One 2002    2002    PlayStation 2
Formula One 2003    2003    PlayStation 2
F1 04              2004    PlayStation 2
Wipeout Pure        2005    PlayStation Portable
F1 05                    2005    PlayStation 2
F1 06                    2006    PlayStation 2, PlayStation Portable
Wipeout Pulse            2007    PlayStation Portable, PlayStation 2
Formula One Championship Edition    2007    PlayStation 3
Wipeout HD            2008    PlayStation 3
Wipeout HD Fury    2009    PlayStation 3
Wipeout 2048         2012    PlayStation Vita
In more related death based news, another Zynga executive jumps ship (http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/176419/Another_Zynga_executive_jumps_ship.php?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+GamasutraNews+%28Gamasutra+News%29).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on August 24, 2012, 06:51:30 PM
So as we all know last week Onlive fired all its employees died, and then restructured with a new back about to rehire as many people as it can looks like this mistake will end up being a gain for Microsoft.

 http://www.neowin.net/news/microsoft-holding-hiring-mixer-for-former-onlive-employees

Quote
Now it looks like at least some of the laid off OnLive employees could find themselves working for a new boss: Microsoft. The company has set up an web page that specifically invites "individuals and teams affected by the OnLive transition" to a hiring mixer on Monday at Microsoft's offices in Mountain View, California. The location is near OnLive's own headquarters in Palo Alto.

Microsoft says in its invite that it is hiring in both Mountain View and its main headquarters in Redmond, Washington. The invite doesn't say anything specifically about Microsoft developing its own cloud-based streaming game service, saying only that it has "big projects in the pipeline for the rest of 2012 and beyond."

Microsoft at one point considered OnLive to be a threat to its Xbox division, according to recently leaked two year old internal documents, and apparently considered acquiring it. It now looks like Microsoft is more interested in the people behind OnLive rather than the company itself.

People were expecting Microsoft to buy onlive after the Sony/gaikai deal. But why buy the studio when you can just grab the talent and intergrate them into putting M$ exisiting cloud stuff towards gaming.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on August 24, 2012, 07:01:36 PM
"M$" stopped being funny about 10 years ago, and comes off as douche-y. Anyways, this is why Nintendo doesn't like buying studios, they prefer getting the employees that have the talent.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on August 24, 2012, 07:51:40 PM
What's so docuhe about it. Everyone else uses it and for better or worst its just shorter than saying the whole name. Didn't mean it in jest or anything like that.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on August 24, 2012, 07:55:54 PM
I must first apologize for this statement considering how the forum knows how I feel about Rare, and it drives them crazy, but I have a strong feeling that Micorsoft will eventually close down Rare and whore its Kinect games to other studios. I give it within a year, two tops, before M$ pulls the plug on Rare, and even its IPs. Unless they sell them off, and that is a matter in and of itself.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on August 24, 2012, 07:58:36 PM
shingi, most people stopped doing it years ago. Almost one does it anymore because it's lame. It's like saying something, then saying "psyche!". If you want to shorthand it, do MS (not M$).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on August 24, 2012, 09:09:44 PM
Will use MS next time.

And there is little indication that Rare will be shut down. In fact their is more to suggest they will stay open with Microsoft is increasing their out put and Phil Harrison being the head of Microsoft Studios Europe now. Not only that but Rare crates all of the avatar crap and works on a lot of the kinect tech for gaming alongside the main kinect team and the Microsoft fusion labs. That and Rarest last two games have sold really well.

But crazier things have happened.?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on August 24, 2012, 11:38:55 PM
As long as Microsoft continues to be a monopoly its perfectly okay to refer to them as M$. That's just my opinion though.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on August 25, 2012, 05:41:53 PM
Will use MS next time.

And there is little indication that Rare will be shut down. In fact their is more to suggest they will stay open with Microsoft is increasing their out put and Phil Harrison being the head of Microsoft Studios Europe now. Not only that but Rare crates all of the avatar crap and works on a lot of the kinect tech for gaming alongside the main kinect team and the Microsoft fusion labs. That and Rarest last two games have sold really well.

But crazier things have happened.?

Phil Harrison? The guy who was with Sony from the beginning when they created the PlayStation? He's with Microsoft now?

That would be like Eiji Anouma leaving Nintendo and the Zelda series to work for Konami.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on August 25, 2012, 06:05:43 PM
Will use MS next time.

And there is little indication that Rare will be shut down. In fact their is more to suggest they will stay open with Microsoft is increasing their out put and Phil Harrison being the head of Microsoft Studios Europe now. Not only that but Rare crates all of the avatar crap and works on a lot of the kinect tech for gaming alongside the main kinect team and the Microsoft fusion labs. That and Rarest last two games have sold really well.

But crazier things have happened.?

Phil Harrison? The guy who was with Sony from the beginning when they created the PlayStation? He's with Microsoft now?

That would be like Eiji Anouma leaving Nintendo and the Zelda series to work for Konami.

He left Sony in February 2008 to join Infogrames (becoming President when they changed their name to Atari), he joined Microsoft as the head of  Interactive Entertainment Team at Microsoft in March of this year.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on August 25, 2012, 06:26:22 PM
Speaking of Sony, I wonder what Ken Kutaragi has been up to since he was "demoted" / fired from his position at Sony Computer Entertainment. Does he have any new crazy ideas up his sleeves?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Louieturkey on August 27, 2012, 03:36:15 PM
shingi, most people stopped doing it years ago. Almost one does it anymore because it's lame. It's like saying something, then saying "psyche!". If you want to shorthand it, do MS (not M$).
Sorry some people are not up to your standards, daddio.  I guess I'm behind the times.  I've used M$ on these forums for 6 years I think and never once did you tell me I wasn't cool and hip like you.  I will try to be more rad and slick and not try to psyche others out with my uncool wit.

Thank you for defending the great M$ from us non hipsters of today's culture.  You have truly turned us from our bogus ways.

BTW, did you hear that Bill & Ted are coming back for a third movie?  I think that is quite excellent. *does air guitar*
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on August 27, 2012, 10:15:16 PM
Eh pretty sure I would be considered a hipster.

*go listens to my grimes/asap rocky playlist*
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on August 28, 2012, 08:13:45 PM

BTW, did you hear that Bill & Ted are coming back for a third movie?  I think that is quite excellent. *does air guitar*

Yeah right... I want to believe, but Keanu Reeves is too big of a movie star to make another low-budget stoner-comedy flick.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on August 28, 2012, 08:18:52 PM

BTW, did you hear that Bill & Ted are coming back for a third movie?  I think that is quite excellent. *does air guitar*

Yeah right... I want to believe, but Keanu Reeves is too big of a movie star to make another low-budget stoner-comedy flick.

Reeves himself confirmed it back in April 2011: http://www.nme.com/filmandtv/news/keanu-reeves-confirms-that-bill-and-ted-3-is-on-the/211337
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: oohhboy on August 29, 2012, 12:46:37 AM

BTW, did you hear that Bill & Ted are coming back for a third movie?  I think that is quite excellent. *does air guitar*

Yeah right... I want to believe, but Keanu Reeves is too big of a movie star to make another low-budget stoner-comedy flick.

Reeves himself confirmed it back in April 2011: http://www.nme.com/filmandtv/news/keanu-reeves-confirms-that-bill-and-ted-3-is-on-the/211337 (http://www.nme.com/filmandtv/news/keanu-reeves-confirms-that-bill-and-ted-3-is-on-the/211337)
JC tendoboy1984, I can't believe somebody could be more wrong than Patcher, but you have done it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on August 29, 2012, 07:28:11 AM
Keanu Reeves is 47 years old
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Louieturkey on August 29, 2012, 03:33:43 PM
Keanu Reeves is 47 years old
Nice fact.  Did you find that on his IMDb page or on wikipedia?  Or are you just an excellent Bill & Ted fan and have known his age at all times?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on August 29, 2012, 03:39:52 PM
I looked it up on Wikipedia. I'm just suggesting that at that age it might not be appropriate for him to do a bill and ted style movie.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on August 29, 2012, 04:54:20 PM
What if it's about Bill and Ted and their kids?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Louieturkey on August 29, 2012, 05:25:52 PM
What if it's about Bill and Ted and their kids?
From the reports I've read, it looks like it'll be about how they are now in their 40s and still haven't written that song that brings world peace.  They end up somehow seeing two different futures, one where they never wrote the song and one where they do write it. 

No idea how Rufus will be incorporated into this one with George Carlin dead.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Fatty The Hutt on August 29, 2012, 05:39:40 PM
No idea how Rufus will be incorporated into this one with George Carlin dead.
I heard they're bringin him back from the dead just for this one.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on August 29, 2012, 06:04:52 PM
They can bring people back from the dead with computers.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on August 30, 2012, 12:30:31 AM
Keanu Reeves is 47 years old

You are wrong.

Keanu is much, much older than 47 years

(http://i.imgur.com/2zYkF.jpg)

try several 100's of years old.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Louieturkey on August 30, 2012, 03:20:42 PM
Keanu Reeves is 47 years old

You are wrong.

Keanu is much, much older than 47 years

(http://i.imgur.com/2zYkF.jpg)

try several 100's of years old.
+1
I think this thread should be renamed the Games Industry and/or Keanu Reeves Death Watch.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: ThePerm on September 02, 2012, 01:03:16 AM
(http://t1.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcSnfxOsbftGOtp9fzvp_j8MiOjYjdmu1V5ZKHEgdihv9dbE4XQJ&t=1)
(http://i.imgur.com/tt1sV.jpg)
(http://thazing.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/06/thazing-2310.jpg)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on September 02, 2012, 07:40:50 AM
Who is that guy in the first picture who looks like Stallone?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: ThePerm on September 02, 2012, 10:55:22 PM
(http://misternizz.files.wordpress.com/2012/05/slyfound.jpg)
its from a Raphael painting called “Pope Gregory IX approving the Vatical Decretal”


(http://misternizz.files.wordpress.com/2011/10/johntravoltatime.jpg?w=500)

Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: ShyGuy on September 02, 2012, 11:56:54 PM
I've found you can't just avoid a thread because the topic title sounds boring. You drop in and find all these fascinating off topic posts.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on September 03, 2012, 07:10:37 PM
On topic, NCSoft announced they are shutting down Paragon Studios. As a result, they will shut down the MMO City of Heroes by the end of the year, and have already shut down subscription billing and the Paragon Market.

http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2012-08-31-city-of-heroes-goes-dark-this-year?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=us-daily
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on September 03, 2012, 08:16:26 PM
(http://misternizz.files.wordpress.com/2011/10/johntravoltatime.jpg?w=500)

Maybe its just me, but the guy's head in the first picture looks disproportionately small compared to the rest of the body. Just like those Goombas from the Super Mario Bros. movie....
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Sarail on September 03, 2012, 08:18:58 PM
CONFIRMED.

John Travolta is a Goomba. I knew it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: nickmitch on September 03, 2012, 10:17:35 PM
Maybe a shrunken head is part of his secret to immortality.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on September 03, 2012, 10:33:30 PM
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wandering_Jew (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wandering_Jew)

Here is a legend which could possibly explain why one of these celebrities looks so much like people who lived hundreds of years ago. Perhaps Nicholas Cage, John Travolta, Keanu Reeves, or whoever is none other than the legendary Wandering Jew? But if the legend is true it can only account for one person. So who is it?

And for further reading on the subject, check this guy out:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Count_of_St._Germain
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on September 05, 2012, 09:28:27 PM
To get this thread back onto track...
 
"Assassin's Creed 3 Director Predicts The End of Major Titles - Game Scoop!"
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z8zpUCU-1Qg&feature=g-all-u (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z8zpUCU-1Qg&feature=g-all-u)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on September 05, 2012, 09:34:35 PM
That doesn't really have to do with the thread. He only thinks that fewer Triple A games with large budgets and multiple studios will come out/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on September 05, 2012, 09:45:18 PM
That doesn't really have to do with the thread. He only thinks that fewer Triple A games with large budgets and multiple studios will come out/

Triple A games that don't sell are killing game companies. :P:
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on September 05, 2012, 10:26:57 PM

All games that don't sell are killing game companies. :P: :

Fixed.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on September 05, 2012, 10:56:20 PM
All games that don't sell are killing game companies. :P: : :

Fixed.

Most of the top tier game developers can survive smaller games not selling, but when triple A titles like Final Fantasy, Dead Space, GTA, et al, do not sell well then it can mean the death of their companies. What that video is getting at is that major developers like EA, SE, Activision, Ubisoft, and eventually Nintendo, are going getting to a point when their major franchises have to sell a set number of units or otherwise a massive chucnk of revenue is taken out of their wallets. The Final Fantasy series is no longer as popular as it once was, and the high development costs are pushing developers into a position where they can not afford to innovate with new IPs because it is simply too dangerous to spend the money to it. You can only make so many Dead Space and Assassin's Creed games beofre the series becom stale. 
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on September 05, 2012, 11:00:38 PM
Games don't need ultra high budgets and multiple studios making one game, which the director of AC seems to realize and notes that they are decreasing. Take a look at something like New Super Mario Bros. Wii. It is a great title, but doesn't cost as much as some other "Triple A" games. It has sold over 26 million copies (making more than $1 billion).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on September 05, 2012, 11:06:42 PM
Games don't need ultra high budgets and multiple studios making one game, which the director of AC seems to realize and notes that they are decreasing. Take a look at something like New Super Mario Bros. Wii. It is a great title, but doesn't cost as much as some other "Triple A" games. It has sold over 26 million copies (making more than $1 billion).


This. I wholeheartedly agree. Same thing goes with the movie industry. But the difference is, movie studios have the money to throw around on crap like that.


I just thought of something... What if movie studios helped fund game development? They could get studios like Pixar, Dreamworks, ILM, etc. to help make character models, environments, programming the game engine, etc. The game developers would then be able to spend more time focusing on the gameplay and narrative.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: oohhboy on September 05, 2012, 11:27:39 PM
That wouldn't work. Movie animators and modelers use completely different and almost incompatible set of technologies to do their work. Movies don't have a technological budget like a game does where every polygon, effect, shader, lighting has to be taken into account to work inside the hardware. Games can't throw what it's rendering into a render farm for a couple days to get a result.

Movies also don't use polygons, they use splines (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spline_%28mathematics%29). Star Wars Rogue Squadron had used models from the movies but only as references. While you can convert splines to polygons, the converter doesn't know how to make an efficient model or what kind of details are important, so at the end of the day you still have to retool the result.

Also programming the engine is the developer's job.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on September 05, 2012, 11:29:58 PM
Triple A games that don't sell are killing game companies. :P: : :

Triple A games that don't sell aren't Triple A games at all. Isn't commercial success what defines what a Triple A game is? Game companies can't just arbitrarily define their games as Triple A. Only the market has the right to make that determination.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on September 05, 2012, 11:31:54 PM
Triple A games that don't sell are killing game companies. :P: : : :

Triple A games that don't sell aren't Triple A games at all. Isn't commercial success what defines what a Triple A game is? Game companies can't just arbitrarily define their games as Triple A. Only the market has the right to make that determination.


Triple A refers to the budget and size of the team making the game.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: BranDonk Kong on September 05, 2012, 11:33:43 PM
I don't know anything about developing 3D games...but didn't ILM lend SEGA their actual Iron Man models for the video game?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on September 05, 2012, 11:34:01 PM
That wouldn't work. Movie animators and modelers use completely different and almost incompatible set of technologies to do their work. Movies don't have a technological budget like a game does where every polygon, effect, shader, lighting has to be taken into account to work inside the hardware. Games can't throw what it's rendering into a render farm for a couple days to get a result.

Movies also don't use polygons, they use splines (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spline_%28mathematics%29). Star Wars Rogue Squadron had used models from the movies but only as references. While you can convert splines to polygons, the converter doesn't know how to make an efficient model or what kind of details are important, so at the end of the day you still have to retool the result.

Also programming the engine is the developer's job.


Then maybe game studios should adapt some of the tools that movie studios use ("splines") to make development more efficient. If movie studios don't need to budget every little detail when making a CG movie, then why must game studios do it?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: oohhboy on September 06, 2012, 12:34:38 AM
You are shitting me tendoboy.

I don't know anything about developing 3D games...but didn't ILM lend SEGA their actual Iron Man models for the video game?
It is likely they had the models to use as a reference or for those models only they went through the conversion and retooling process. The only time you could directly use such models is if for some reason movie were using polygons which they wouldn't thats assuming the polygon count of the model in question was not ridiculously high or they took the model and rendered it to a 2d sprite. In Star Wars Rogue Squadron's behind the game feature where they show you how they went about developing the game had a section where they talk about splines or NURBS from ILM and the work they had to do to make them usable in a game.

There is a reason why movies uses splines and it is in the wiki article.
Quote
In computer graphics (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computer_graphics) splines are popular curves because of the simplicity of their construction, their ease and accuracy of evaluation, and their capacity to approximate complex shapes through curve fitting (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Curve_fitting) and interactive curve design.
To create the same curve in polygons you would use an absurd number of them to have a high enough level of detail for a movie so flat surfaces don't show up on a curve. It's easier to work with since the real world is made of curves. It's basically digital clay. The current implementation of splines for mechanical objects are NURBS (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-uniform_rational_B-spline).

The reason why splines isn't used in realtime applications like games is because they are computationally too expensive to use and requires massively more programming work to implement compared to using polygon meshes (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polygon_mesh) in an environment that is limited by the amount of computer power and time to render. There are plenty of other reason why polygons are used over splines and anymore discussion about it beyond this level is above the level of knowledge I have on the subject.

Lets just say programmers and mathematicians the world over has already looked at this question and had decided one set of technology for this purpose and another set of tech for another for some very good reasons. If they could uses one "Universal" system, there wouldn't all these different model construction/rendering/animation types/methods out there.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on September 06, 2012, 12:48:19 AM
So a movie using polygons would require more hardware rendering (using more resources and a higher cost) than a game using splines/NURBS?


I remember reading an article years ago that said the PSP could use NURBS... If the PSP could do it, then surely more powerful consoles like the Xbox 360, PS3, and Wii U could do NURBS as well.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: oohhboy on September 06, 2012, 01:06:19 AM
So a movie using polygons would require more hardware rendering (using more resources and a higher cost) than a game using splines/NURBS?
No. A movie using polygons would require more physical work for the modeller to construct than to use splines. Given that a movie compared to a game console has effectively infinite rendering power/time why not use splines which are easier to mold complex shapes out of with surfaces the mathematically contain "infinite" detail.

Go dig up that PSP article. If it was any good they would tell you the limitations of the system. Also go read the wiki articles as they breakdown the pros and cons of each method. You won't understand it all, I don't, but it should be enough to give you a sense why they use different method for different applications.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on September 06, 2012, 01:10:34 AM
So a movie using polygons would require more hardware rendering (using more resources and a higher cost) than a game using splines/NURBS?


I remember reading an article years ago that said the PSP could use NURBS... If the PSP could do it, then surely more powerful consoles like the Xbox 360, PS3, and Wii U could do NURBS as well.

PSP is CAPABLE of NURBS, but doesn't use them. Current gen consoles can do so too, but don't. Hell, even PC games rarely, if ever, use them either. They are just too expensive.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on September 06, 2012, 01:24:07 AM
So a movie using polygons would require more hardware rendering (using more resources and a higher cost) than a game using splines/NURBS?


I remember reading an article years ago that said the PSP could use NURBS... If the PSP could do it, then surely more powerful consoles like the Xbox 360, PS3, and Wii U could do NURBS as well.

PSP is CAPABLE of NURBS, but doesn't use them. Current gen consoles can do so too, but don't. Hell, even PC games rarely, if ever, use them either. They are just too expensive.


If NURBS are so expensive, then why do movie and animation studios use them? Polygons are a cheaper alternative, but they require more manpower to construct models using them. So which is the better rendering tool to use? NURBS or polygons?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: oohhboy on September 06, 2012, 01:38:08 AM
When he said expensive, he mean the amount of computer calculations required. A console or handheld device have only so many calculations per unit of time before it has to render the next frame/physics/input output/AI. Movies are not restrained by the amount of time they have to render a frame nor deal with gameplay elements besides physics. Also without the time and hardware limitations they can pool massive amounts of computing resources to do some extremely complex maths.

This is a entry from the developer commentary from Portal 2. It should give you a perspective of how much computing power is required to do something.
  Introduction Destruction (http://theportalwiki.com/wiki/Portal_2_developer_commentary#Introduction_Destruction) 
The container ride destruction sequence provided some unique technical challenges. The dynamics you experience are actually computed as two separate but nested simulations. The first is a coarse scale simulation designed as a stress element analysis pass. This pass computes the overall gross motion of the container itself, and computes the collisions and break points based on path keyframe data and a network of constraints. As the container bumps and crashes along, the constraints start breaking, and the room progressively starts to come apart. There are over three hundred rigid bodies and nine hundred constraints in this rig, all individually configured for properties like tensile, friction and collision response. The coarse simulation portrayed gross motion that captured the main dynamics of the ride, but not the fine details. The product of the coarse simulation was then used to deform spline-based surfaces representing the container geometry, which in turn were parents to fine debris as anchored rigid bodies. As the surface deformations increase, anchors are broken and the fine debris rigid bodies are released into the simulation. The fine simulation also includes the interior furniture, and the model detailing. The two simulations were then connected using cache data and were driven together by a series of scripts. Due to the computational complexities of having two nested simulations, we had to come up with some solutions to some interesting mathematical problems. One problem was that the nested nature of the simulations resulted in some instability in the fine debris calculations due to floating point computing limits. The solution employed for this was to compute the fine debris on a stage where the root transform of the coarse simulation was essentially cancelled out and stored for later use. This allowed us to more accurately detect the fine interactions between the debris and the environment. Post simulation, the root transform position and inertia were reapplied to the details. We solved the problem of trying to compute the player within this highly dynamic environment by putting them in a virtual room that has all the base shapes of the rendered container, but is simply used to compute player navigation. (It’s hidden somewhere else in the map.) The viewpoint of the player is then parented to coarse simulation transform, resulting in the final rendered frame. At the end of the ride the player is teleported into the actual game space. The simulations were iterative, enabling us to sculpt the dynamics in parallel with the gameplay design. In the final product there are over 1200 rigid bodies, 900 constraints, and 1000 joints. With all the iterations combined, the actual run time spent computing the simulation was 92.4875 days.
— Gray Horsfield
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Louieturkey on September 06, 2012, 08:41:59 PM
Remember tendoboy, game systems have to be able to render the graphics in real time whereas with movies, each frame can take hours and hours to render but once it is rendered, processing power never has to be used on it again.  I don't think even the top supercomputers in the world could render Uncharted in real time with Brave's graphics level but with all the AI and physics and all the other effects thrown in.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on September 07, 2012, 01:03:10 AM
One thing that no one is discussing is the fact that the film and game industries are rival entertainment groups. One tries to take money from the other. From what I understand the growth in gaming has taken some money away from the film industry, so I do not see them working together.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: S-U-P-E-R on September 07, 2012, 04:41:40 AM
This creepy and insane game studio CEO keeps digging his own grave. I wonder if this sort of **** goes on in many other companies?

 http://kotaku.com/5940401/pc-gaming-studio-said-she-ruined-their-game-but-only-after-she-sued-the-boss-for-sexual-harassment
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Chozo Ghost on September 07, 2012, 01:00:19 PM
This creepy and insane game studio CEO keeps digging his own grave. I wonder if this sort of **** goes on in many other companies?

 http://kotaku.com/5940401/pc-gaming-studio-said-she-ruined-their-game-but-only-after-she-sued-the-boss-for-sexual-harassment

Hopefully her boss gets sent to prison, and then he can experience sexual harrassment on the receiving end.... in the showers.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Louieturkey on September 07, 2012, 03:22:33 PM
This creepy and insane game studio CEO keeps digging his own grave. I wonder if this sort of **** goes on in many other companies?

 http://kotaku.com/5940401/pc-gaming-studio-said-she-ruined-their-game-but-only-after-she-sued-the-boss-for-sexual-harassment
While I will try not to jump to any conclusions until both cases are final, the evidence listed there seems to point to her being in the right and him trying to find a way to get back at her, especially his response letter (written on a message board).  Plus he admitted to be a sexist, so it pretty much furthers her case.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: S-U-P-E-R on September 07, 2012, 05:41:15 PM
He keeps posting on his twitter and elsewhere, too. He's probably going to be murdered by his own lawyer.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: noname2200 on September 07, 2012, 07:32:16 PM
He keeps posting on his twitter and elsewhere, too. He's probably going to be murdered by his own lawyer.

Yessir! If I were his attorney, I'd do everything I could to take away his posting privilege. Maybe stick a literal muzzle on him for the next year or so, just to be safe.

But since I'm not, I'm cool with the man digging his way deeper and deeper into liability.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on September 09, 2012, 05:39:44 PM
One thing that no one is discussing is the fact that the film and game industries are rival entertainment groups. One tries to take money from the other. From what I understand the growth in gaming has taken some money away from the film industry, so I do not see them working together.


But they have worked together in the past. Remember the video game adaptations of Peter Jackson's King Kong and Lord of the Rings movies?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Louieturkey on September 10, 2012, 05:52:26 PM
One thing that no one is discussing is the fact that the film and game industries are rival entertainment groups. One tries to take money from the other. From what I understand the growth in gaming has taken some money away from the film industry, so I do not see them working together.


But they have worked together in the past. Remember the video game adaptations of Peter Jackson's King Kong and Lord of the Rings movies?
PJ got money from those games.  I think Kytim is talking about non-licensed games.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on September 10, 2012, 05:54:48 PM
Steven Spielberg was heavily involved in creating Boom Blox and is well known as being a video game fan for at least the last 30 years.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Louieturkey on September 10, 2012, 06:17:40 PM
The statement that they compete is kind of too broad anyways.  Yes, they are different entertainment services fighting for your dollars.  But they are also competing with sports and TV and parks and every other form of entertainment.  Sometimes, those mediums cross over like with movie licensed games and sports games.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on October 10, 2012, 04:57:50 PM
THQ announced that they are shutting down their Australian distribution office THQ Australia, resulting in the loss of 18 jobs. THQ will instead have All Interactive Entertainment distribute their games in Australia.

http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2012-10-10-report-thq-australia-to-close?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=us-daily
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on October 10, 2012, 05:10:21 PM
THQ announced that they are shutting down their Australian distribution office THQ Australia, resulting in the loss of 18 jobs. THQ will instead have All Interactive Entertainment distribute their games in Australia.

http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2012-10-10-report-thq-australia-to-close?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=us-daily (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2012-10-10-report-thq-australia-to-close?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=us-daily)

I do not think that THQ will be around for another year despite the record sales od Darksiders 2. They may have already crossed the rubicon in terms of finances, so they will either file for bankruptcy, or be bought out by some other company for its IPs.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on October 10, 2012, 05:12:06 PM
THQ has been getting better in the last few months, and they should get better now that they are moving away from licensed games and focusing on original IPs/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: broodwars on October 10, 2012, 05:23:38 PM
THQ announced that they are shutting down their Australian distribution office THQ Australia, resulting in the loss of 18 jobs. THQ will instead have All Interactive Entertainment distribute their games in Australia.

http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2012-10-10-report-thq-australia-to-close?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=us-daily (http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2012-10-10-report-thq-australia-to-close?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=us-daily)

I do not think that THQ will be around for another year despite the record sales od Darksiders 2.

WHAT "record sales"? IIRC, it sold about 247,000 copies in its first month, which is good but nothing compared to what THQ needed it to do.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on October 10, 2012, 05:30:20 PM
To be fair, that 247K copies was for only 1 week since it came out at the end of the month and only counted for 1 week of NPD sales. So 247K in one week is really good for a August release.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on October 10, 2012, 06:34:08 PM
To be fair, that 247K copies was for only 1 week since it came out at the end of the month and only counted for 1 week of NPD sales. So 247K in one week is really good for a August release.

And hence the words "record sales." What I meant by this is that it will not be enough in the longterm to stem the fall of THQ. I do not see them exsisting in their current form by this time next year.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on October 10, 2012, 09:36:35 PM
Mega Man is pretty much dead now. Maybe Capcom will revive him like SEGA did with Sonic? Aside from the amazing Mega Man 9 and 10, Capcom hasn't done much with the Blue Bomber in the past few years.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on October 10, 2012, 10:25:53 PM
Mega Man is pretty much dead now. Maybe Capcom will revive him like SEGA did with Sonic? Aside from the amazing Mega Man 9 and 10, Capcom hasn't done much with the Blue Bomber in the past few years.

Capcom witnessed deminishing returns on their investments into the Megaman franchies, so they pulled the axe on it for a period of time.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: noname2200 on October 10, 2012, 11:14:40 PM
THQ has been getting better in the last few months, and they should get better now that they are moving away from licensed games and focusing on original IPs/

I would think that the other way around would be more profitable in today's environment, no?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: MagicCow64 on October 11, 2012, 06:39:19 PM

 
Capcom witnessed deminishing returns on their investments into the Megaman franchies, so they pulled the axe on it for a period of time.

I think they don't really know what to do with it. When's the last time Capcom made a "colorful" console game? Zack and Wiki? I'm thinking that if they tried to make another 3D console Megaman it would end up like Bomberman Zero given the direction Capcom has been blundering in.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on October 12, 2012, 03:52:46 AM

 
Capcom witnessed deminishing returns on their investments into the Megaman franchies, so they pulled the axe on it for a period of time.

I think they don't really know what to do with it. When's the last time Capcom made a "colorful" console game? Zack and Wiki? I'm thinking that if they tried to make another 3D console Megaman it would end up like Bomberman Zero given the direction Capcom has been blundering in.


I'm surprised that Capcom never really brought the series into 3D aside from the Mega Man Legends spinoffs. A proper Mega Man game in 3D, complete with Robot Masters (or Reploids), spike pits, disappearing blocks, and hard-as-hell difficulty would be amazing.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on October 12, 2012, 09:55:46 PM

 
Capcom witnessed deminishing returns on their investments into the Megaman franchies, so they pulled the axe on it for a period of time.

I think they don't really know what to do with it. When's the last time Capcom made a "colorful" console game? Zack and Wiki? I'm thinking that if they tried to make another 3D console Megaman it would end up like Bomberman Zero given the direction Capcom has been blundering in.


I'm surprised that Capcom never really brought the series into 3D aside from the Mega Man Legends spinoffs. A proper Mega Man game in 3D, complete with Robot Masters (or Reploids), spike pits, disappearing blocks, and hard-as-hell difficulty would be amazing.

I would love to see a Megaman X game done in the style of Metroid: Other M. Take out the pixel hunts and replace the dialog scenes with animated videos and it could be a good game. However, Megaman X would not be allowed to use the powers he gains from the defeated masters until Dr. Light gives him permission. ;)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: broodwars on October 18, 2012, 09:31:53 AM
Well, this one stings a little for me: Starhawk developer Lightbox Interactive is laying off 24 employees and transitioning to iPhone titles (http://www.ign.com/articles/2012/10/18/rumor-starhawk-developer-lightbox-interactive-hit-with-major-layoffs) after Sony ended their publishing agreement.

This wasn't unexpected after Sony basically sent Starhawk out to die, but Starhawk is one of the most enjoyable multiplayer games I've played all year so I had hoped the game would have done better.  I wanted to see a sequel, which I suppose could still happen since Sony owns the IP but it's a shame to lose this team.  Starhawk itself will still be supported by Sony's Santa Monica Studios.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on October 18, 2012, 05:16:56 PM

Well, this one stings a little for me: Starhawk developer Lightbox Interactive is laying off 24 employees and transitioning to iPhone titles (http://www.ign.com/articles/2012/10/18/rumor-starhawk-developer-lightbox-interactive-hit-with-major-layoffs) after Sony ended their publishing agreement.

This wasn't unexpected after Sony basically sent Starhawk out to die, but Starhawk is one of the most enjoyable multiplayer games I've played all year so I had hoped the game would have done better.  I wanted to see a sequel, which I suppose could still happen since Sony owns the IP but it's a shame to lose this team.  Starhawk itself will still be supported by Sony's Santa Monica Studios.


Wow, that's certainly a dickish thing of Sony to do. Sony basically left Lightbox for dead, and now the developer has to limit themselves to making mobile games just to survive? What a tragedy.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: NWR_insanolord on October 18, 2012, 05:20:14 PM
They would have been a nice pickup for Nintendo. Starhawk is a kind of game you've never really seen on a Nintendo platform, and would be a nice niche to be able to fill internally.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on October 18, 2012, 05:23:04 PM
Sony did nothing wrong, all they did was end their publishing agreement with the developer. It's not Sony's fault that the studio let themselves become dependent on Sony to survive. It was Lightbox who decided to fire their employees and switch to iOS games. The game flopped in terms of sales, so I don't blame Sony for deciding not to work with them again. I feel sorry for the employees who lost their jobs, but its in no way Sony's fault. The funny thing is that LightBox is made up of former Sony employees.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Louieturkey on October 18, 2012, 06:10:15 PM
I thought Sony did a pretty good job of promoting the game too.  Everything I saw Sony related seemed to include Starhawk and I got multiple emails from Sony about it along with it being the first thing you saw entering the PSN store.  There was a code to join the beta in Uncharted 3.  So they tried.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: azeke on October 18, 2012, 11:50:55 PM
Starhawk is a kind of game you've never really seen on a Nintendo platform, and would be a nice niche to be able to fill internally.
Isn't Battallion Wars series similar to it?

I don't know much about either series.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on October 18, 2012, 11:54:04 PM
Starhawk is a kind of game you've never really seen on a Nintendo platform, and would be a nice niche to be able to fill internally.
Isn't Battallion Wars series similar to it?

I don't know much about either series.


I was thinking: "Starhawk = Star Fox"
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: broodwars on October 19, 2012, 12:05:05 AM
Starhawk is a kind of game you've never really seen on a Nintendo platform, and would be a nice niche to be able to fill internally.
Isn't Battallion Wars series similar to it?

I don't know much about either series.

From what I've seen of Battalion Wars, there are similarities but they're overall pretty different.  Battalion Wars seems to be about commanding squads of pre-made mixed forces to take out an enemy stronghold/army.

By comparison, Starhawk is primarily a multiplayer team-based game where two giant armies of individual players clash with each other for control of a map, each player controlling a single character.  However, each individual player can call down a base structure at any time so long as they have sufficient resources, allowing them to change weaponry and even jump into vehicles.  One of those vehicles is the Starhawk, which is a bipedal robot that transforms into a jet for Star Fox-style dogfighting and aerial bombardment.  It's a game where the situation is constantly changing as players are constantly calling down new structures and vehicles and destroying each other's stuff.  It's a game I wish I had a lot more time to play in multiplayer, because it's a very fun multiplayer game.  The single player's pretty decent as well, but it's built more around a tower defense-like structure.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on November 23, 2012, 05:31:32 PM
Eurocom has laid off at least 150 people, downsizing from over 200 employees down to about 50. They also plan to focus more on mobile games.

http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2012-11-23-eurocom-forced-to-make-large-number-of-redundancies
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: oohhboy on November 23, 2012, 06:07:13 PM
They were never a top tier developer, but over the years they had shown then selves as fairly competent, although uninspired. Looks like Legend's Triple A awfulness did them in.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Shaymin on November 23, 2012, 07:29:27 PM
Thanks, Kotick.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on November 23, 2012, 07:42:08 PM
Thanks, Kotick.

?
I assume that was sarcasm.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on November 24, 2012, 08:04:30 PM
According to Joystiq, Sony's credit rating has been demoted to "junk" status. Can Sony survive if they keep refusing to shed their non-profitable divisions?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on November 24, 2012, 08:12:39 PM
That happend a couple of weeks ago (though I think another credit agency just did it a few days ago). And most of their divisions are losing money
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: MrPhishfood on November 24, 2012, 08:23:34 PM
They will have to give up making Spiderman movies.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on November 24, 2012, 08:26:41 PM
Sony could just give up on the handheld market and simply focus on home consoles, since it seems most people have no interest in the Vita.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: lolmonade on November 24, 2012, 11:17:57 PM
Sony could just give up on the handheld market and simply focus on home consoles, since it seems most people have no interest in the Vita.

I would suggest that maybe there are people who want the Vita, but can't stomach the price of entry when considering the accessories needed, as well as a perceived lack of must-have games for the system, not just a general non-interest in the handheld at all.

Either way, although PSP didn't beat the DS in sales, didn't it do relatively well for Sony?  In general, I thought Sony's gaming division is one of the few profitable areas of the company.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Sarail on November 24, 2012, 11:22:31 PM
I miss the days when it was just good ol' Sega vs. Nintendo - a two console generation each gen that consisted of a very heated rivalry between Mario and Sonic's owners. Such good times. Sure sure, there was the Atari Jaguar and the Turbo Grafx-16... or even the Neo Geo system... but those were all so minuscule in popularity that it really didn't even matter. It was NES vs. Master System, and Super NES vs. Genesis/MegaDrive. With that said...

I really hope to see Sony withdraw from the game industry and bow out by the end of this new generation. Cut their losses and move on - and hopefully rebuild their crumbling ecosystem of electronics in due time. But no more video games. Just stop.

I think a really good competition would arise from Nintendo vs. Microsoft alone. Japan vs. America, pretty much (in terms of video games, of course.) But would Samsung eventually step in like rumors are suggesting? I don't know how I'd truly feel about that.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on November 24, 2012, 11:23:04 PM
It was, but even that is losing money for them now lol.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Shaymin on November 25, 2012, 08:28:03 AM
Of the other two console players, Microsoft is more likely to bow out. They have gutted their first party development down to 343, Turn10 and the shambling rotting corpse of Rare and they care more about beating Apple/Google than Nintendo/Sony.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: broodwars on November 25, 2012, 09:57:24 AM
I really hope to see Sony withdraw from the game industry and bow out by the end of this new generation. Cut their losses and move on - and hopefully rebuild their crumbling ecosystem of electronics in due time. But no more video games. Just stop.

Alright, can you elaborate on why you think Sony should bow out? I think they've unquestionably put out the best lineup of 1st party titles (and a great selection of indie titles) this generation between them and Microsoft, so I don't see why the industry would be better with them bowing out as opposed to Microsoft. As I've said before, I hope none of the Big Three bow out of the industry.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Adrock on November 25, 2012, 11:48:09 AM
I don't want any of the 3 to bow out either. However, I would like Sony and Microsoft to be more responsible financially. The whole take-a-loss-and-make-it-back-later does not work or at best, works poorly. They don't really make a profit when they stop taking losses. Rather, they make a profit once they make up for the losses they accrued which I don't think either Microsoft or Sony has done with 360 and PS3 yet respectively. It's bad for the industry when 2 console manufacturers as well 2 of the largest publishers are losing money.

If either Microsoft or Sony were to drop out, I would expect it to be Sony. They've lost more money. If I had to pick which one I would rather see drop out, it'd still be Sony. They bring almost nothing new to the table, besides disc formats. At least Microsoft is making an effort to not just ctrl-C Nintendo's ideas. Sony either goes 3rd party or they sell their assets. If Microsoft or Nintendo went for an IP grab, we're stuck with the same scenario we have with their games today: they'd be exclusive to 1 console. Imagine if Nintendo bought Sony's gaming assets (IPs, not technology) to be their Western/mature presence. That's the pipe dream of all pipe dreams especially considering Nintendo wouldn't even buy Sega when they were on firesale, but it's fun to think about. Ultimately, as long as there's at least 2 hardware manufacturers in the game to keep the other from becoming stagnant and/or arrogant, the industry should be fine. I just always hope 1 of them is Nintendo. It would be a sad day when the oldest of the 3 had to drop out because the industry was no longer sustainable.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: MagicCow64 on November 25, 2012, 07:40:55 PM


I would suggest that maybe there are people who want the Vita, but can't stomach the price of entry when considering the accessories needed, as well as a perceived lack of must-have games for the system, not just a general non-interest in the handheld at all.

Either way, although PSP didn't beat the DS in sales, didn't it do relatively well for Sony?  In general, I thought Sony's gaming division is one of the few profitable areas of the company.

I think the PSP concentrated most of its success in Japan, whereas the Vita is being outsold in Japan by . . . the PSP (last I saw).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on November 25, 2012, 08:07:08 PM
You know, it would be nice to have multiple companies making game systems, akin to smartphones, tablets, PC's, TV's, etc. There should be a standard upon which all game systems are based.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: NWR_insanolord on November 25, 2012, 08:32:11 PM
You know, it would be nice to have multiple companies making game systems, akin to smartphones, tablets, PC's, TV's, etc. There should be a standard upon which all game systems are based.

That's been tried a few times and has always been a colossal failure. Also, Nintendo would never let that happen.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Shaymin on November 25, 2012, 08:53:31 PM
You know, it would be nice to have multiple companies making game systems, akin to smartphones, tablets, PC's, TV's, etc. There should be a standard upon which all game systems are based.

Well Mr. Dyack, I must be forced to remind you that TOO HUMAN SUCKS BALLS
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on November 25, 2012, 09:04:09 PM
You know, it would be nice to have multiple companies making game systems, akin to smartphones, tablets, PC's, TV's, etc. There should be a standard upon which all game systems are based.

That's been tried a few times and has always been a colossal failure. Also, Nintendo would never let that happen.

I'm talking about making the game platform a standard piece of tech that any company can make; like a TV, mobile phone, tablet, PC, etc. Game systems shouldn't be this proprietary.

I guess what I'm thinking of is something like Android or Windows, where there are multiple devices from multiple manufactures using a standard OS.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: NWR_insanolord on November 25, 2012, 09:09:10 PM
You know, it would be nice to have multiple companies making game systems, akin to smartphones, tablets, PC's, TV's, etc. There should be a standard upon which all game systems are based.

Well Mr. Dyack, I must be forced to remind you that TOO HUMAN SUCKS BALLS

I actually kind of liked Too Human. It was flawed, but had good ideas. I wish they'd gotten a chance to do a sequel because I think it could have been really good.




You know, it would be nice to have multiple companies making game systems, akin to smartphones, tablets, PC's, TV's, etc. There should be a standard upon which all game systems are based.

That's been tried a few times and has always been a colossal failure. Also, Nintendo would never let that happen.

I'm talking about making the game platform a standard piece of tech that any company can make; like a TV, mobile phone, tablet, PC, etc. Game systems shouldn't be this proprietary.


I know what you were talking about, and it's been attempted a couple times. One of those massive failure consoles in the mid '90s, maybe the CD-i, tried to do that, and then somebody else did later on. It's just a bad idea, because the whole advantage of a dedicated game console is one cohesive environment, which you don't get if too many companies are involved. If you want a game system that isn't proprietary, go build yourself a Linux box.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Sarail on November 25, 2012, 09:16:19 PM
Yeah, Adrock kind of explained how I feel about the situation. I feel like a 1-on-1 direct competitor would force more creativity out of Nintendo. And in a way, it's true. As I look back fondly on the Nintendo vs. Sega days, there were tons of creative games and IP coming out left and right out of Nintendo's wahzoo. Almost unbelievable.

With Microsoft being Nintendo's only rival, it could turn into a western developer vs. eastern developer type of game to see who could take over the other's "gamerscape." Would definitely be interesting, methinks.

Naughty Dog as a Nintendo exclusive developer? Yes, please.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on November 25, 2012, 09:16:46 PM
But that is not the same. Cell phone gaming is not unified, you have iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Symbian, BlackBerry. It is just as fragmented. With console games, you just have Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on November 25, 2012, 10:39:31 PM
You know, it would be nice to have multiple companies making game systems, akin to smartphones, tablets, PC's, TV's, etc. There should be a standard upon which all game systems are based.

That's been tried a few times and has always been a colossal failure. Also, Nintendo would never let that happen.

I'm talking about making the game platform a standard piece of tech that any company can make; like a TV, mobile phone, tablet, PC, etc. Game systems shouldn't be this proprietary.

I guess what I'm thinking of is something like Android or Windows, where there are multiple devices from multiple manufactures using a standard OS.

Keep in mind that competition breeds quality, so if there is a single piece of technology shared by many then the quality will inevitably go down as a result.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on November 25, 2012, 10:53:41 PM
Devices that share a similar OS (Android, Windows) are unified because they are built using the same architecture. For the "console standard" to work, multiple manufacturers would have to design their hardware around a unified OS, and each device would need to support the same games (similar to how games for Windows or Android work).

Microsoft is already experimenting with this, in a way. According to that leaked Xbox document, Microsoft wants complete integration among Windows, Xbox, and Windows Phone devices, with each device sharing games and apps.

If manufacturers could agree on a unified standard for game consoles, it would be the end of porting, because games would be playable on any device that is built using those standards. And there would be a wider variety of devices to choose from.

It's what made Windows and Android so popular. All those devices share a common OS.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on November 25, 2012, 11:59:33 PM
I just looked up that OUYA console, and it's basically what I'm describing. A game console that is based on an open OS (Android) that will (presumably) be manufactured by multiple companies. Microsoft and Google already standardized cell phone and PC development with things like Windows, DirectX, Android, etc. So why can't this same firm of standardization work with game consoles?

If I buy a PC game, it will work on any Windows PC, regardless of the brand (HP, Samsung, Lenovo, Toshiba). All DVD players play the same movies. Any Android phone will run the same apps, regardless of manufacturer.

See my point? If game consoles were built to a singular standard (all games will run on any device, regardless of manufacturer), it would make game development so much easier.

If it worked for the PC and smartphone industries, it can work for game consoles. They would just have to use the same OS and hardware configuration to ensure cross-compatibility. Like how Windows or Android devices work.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on November 26, 2012, 07:19:40 AM
Actually, PC games don't work on "any Windows PC". Even if you ignore the technical requirements, there are games that only play on older versions of Windows. Ouya will (if it even comes out) only be made by one company, and the flaw with Ouya is they are encouraging people to basically pirate it.

There is not much benefit to Nintendo/Sony/Microsoft to give up the royalties they make from games on their hardware. Right now, Microsoft makes money on every first AND third party game released on Xbox 360. In fact, Microsoft relies on third party support more than Nintendo or Sony, so why would they give up all that extra revenue?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on November 26, 2012, 12:15:47 PM
Quote from: TJ Spyke
there are games that only play on older versions of Windows.

I really wish you would stop taking things I say our of context. When I said "any Windows PC can run any game" I specifically meant modern games running on Windows 7 (or eventually Windows 8). There's a standardization going on across all Windows PC's. And then we have Steam, which is completely cross-platform.

When I say I want an open console environment, I mean something akin to a Windows PC or Android phone. You buy a game and it can run on any device that uses the same OS and system architecture. True cross-compatibility.

That's how Steam works, right?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Oblivion on November 26, 2012, 03:28:12 PM
In any case, you can run compatibility mode.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: ymeegod on December 07, 2012, 05:49:57 PM
Eurocom is shutting down.  Their last two games were 007's Goldeneye and 007 Legends.  Legends scored an 4/10 avg.  Personally, 007 brand has been tranished so bad that ever if a decent one did come around I doubt anyone would notice.

Not sure what deal Activision has for the 007 but it's long overdue that someone else take over because James Bond is the one that needs saving :0.

Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: EasyCure on December 07, 2012, 06:56:49 PM
would this affect legend coming to wii u? :-(  i want it....
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on December 07, 2012, 07:02:45 PM
would this affect legend coming to wii u? :-(  i want it....

Considering the game should be done (it's supposed to come out in North America December 11), I doubt it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: EasyCure on December 07, 2012, 07:40:53 PM
i doubt it too, but I don't doubt publishers making stupid decisions
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on December 08, 2012, 09:43:47 PM
So after the success of GoldenEye, one mediocre game (007 Legends) can kill an entire company? Didn't Activision fund them enough money to complete the game on time?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on December 08, 2012, 10:31:17 PM
So after the success of GoldenEye, one mediocre game (007 Legends) can kill an entire company? Didn't Activision fund them enough money to complete the game on time?


It is pretty simple math when one realizes that we are living in a a very expensive period of the gaming industry in terms of development costs. The huge leap in technological prowess by the PS3 and Xbox 360 created the unfortunate side effect of huge game budgets just to get a game on the market. Also, the ever tanking global economy,  fall of the dollar, and currency fluctuations, then even a five million dollar game can make or break a game studio.


The bottom line is the herd of the gaming industry is going to be increasingly culled if console makers like Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo do not find a way to make consoles cheaper to develop for. Today's multi-billion dollar game company is tomorrow's iPhone exclusive developer due to the thinning of profit margins.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on December 09, 2012, 12:28:00 AM
So casual mobile games are the future of the gaming industry. All that hard work pushing graphics and hardware tech will go to waste. Got it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: NWR_insanolord on December 09, 2012, 01:23:54 AM
Not necessarily casual mobile games, but we've pretty much reached the limit of what can be done in terms of graphics on a reasonable budget. No matter how much better the tech gets, it'll be too expensive to take advantage of very often, and even now one bad move can cripple a studio. That's what Kytim's saying: we've seen multiple studios hit hard by games that didn't meet expectations, and the only way for them to stay afloat was to downsize and switch their focus to the low-risk casual market.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: MagicCow64 on December 09, 2012, 10:05:16 PM
Not necessarily casual mobile games, but we've pretty much reached the limit of what can be done in terms of graphics on a reasonable budget. No matter how much better the tech gets, it'll be too expensive to take advantage of very often, and even now one bad move can cripple a studio. That's what Kytim's saying: we've seen multiple studios hit hard by games that didn't meet expectations, and the only way for them to stay afloat was to downsize and switch their focus to the low-risk casual market.

This is why I'm becoming more convinced that Microsoft is going to keep the Durango reasonable from a tech angle. It'll run UE4 to keep Epic happy, but I don't think it's going to blow the WiiU out of the water like much of the gaming press seems to assume. It would probably make tactical sense as well to keep the Durango modest and let Sony faceplant again with another Cadillac console. Xbox's probable larger userbase and range with the WiiU would probably make it the target console once more, and the cheaper development would just make PS4 exclusives that much more unappealing. If I was Microsoft, I'd definitely want to take out one of the competitors at this point, and they won't be able to stomp out Nintendo this Gen. Sony is vulnerable.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: broodwars on December 09, 2012, 11:06:07 PM
Not necessarily casual mobile games, but we've pretty much reached the limit of what can be done in terms of graphics on a reasonable budget. No matter how much better the tech gets, it'll be too expensive to take advantage of very often, and even now one bad move can cripple a studio. That's what Kytim's saying: we've seen multiple studios hit hard by games that didn't meet expectations, and the only way for them to stay afloat was to downsize and switch their focus to the low-risk casual market.

Or they could make games that people actually want to buy. Just sayin'. As badly as some studios have had it this generation, those that have discovered what people want to buy this generation have performed quite well.  Generally, that's how it is every generation, so you'll excuse me if I won't jump on the pile with the rest of you to denounce actual effort into production values as the Death of the Industry.

I liked Eurocom's work on GoldenEye, Dead Space Extraction, and even The World is Not Enough back in the day, but if everything I've heard of 007 Legends is true it's hard to feel too sorry for them.

I honestly wonder how well GoldenEye actually did on the Wii, given the Wii's deserved reputation with 3rd party sales.  Activision was pretty quick to port the game to the HD consoles in a much better state, after all.  And given the reviews and general lack of buzz around that port at the time (though I really enjoyed both versions), I get the feeling the HD port didn't sell very well.  I don't think it was just 007 Legends selling poorly that did them in.  I get the feeling this was built-up from multiple failures this generation.

Really, just look at their output this generation  (according to Wikipedia):
Yeah, that's a real list of winners right there.  It wasn't just 007 Legends that took them out.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on December 10, 2012, 12:56:22 AM
This really isn't a case of a massive budget though. The game had a very short development period and used the same Engine as Goldeneye as well as the bulk of its assets. 

Plain and simple this was just a very bad game that tried to quickly cash in on Skyfall by putting Daniel Craig into a whole bunch of old bond movies. While this worked for Goldeneye which was a more grounded film in the first place it doesn't really work where your trying to shoehorn Craig's bond into Moon Raker and the golden gun.

After Goldeneye they should have went with the next games being similar too Bloodstone where its a whole new adventure taking place in this universe. Probably my favorite moments of blood stone and Goldeneye were the Intro's being like the movies and the james just being various adventures the Craig Bond had in his life time. 

Hopefully the bond lisence is taken from Activsion and given to someone like Ubisoft.


Also even if Durango/Orbis are both big tech jumps it doesn't excatly mean that Budgets will go up. I think middleware like Unreal 4 and cryengine 3 will help alleviate a lot of the early budget inflations as they both have a lot of common with their predesscors. That and almost every major third party dev uses middleware for smaller projects but have their own game engines being used company wide by all of their studios (Frostbite, Anvil, Lumionious).  I'm expecting all of EAs sports games to be running on the same engine next gen as well.


Also most developers are pretty good at working with HD games in a reasonable time frame. Only ones I can see having a hard time with HD development are nintendo and Square enix.

Thrid parties shouldn't have a hardtime and should still be able to put out impressive games as long as they remember they can't pull a Naughty Dog or 343i without going bankrupt if the title doesn't sale.[youtube][/youtube]
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: NWR_insanolord on December 10, 2012, 04:42:41 AM
Or they could make games that people actually want to buy. Just sayin'.

Because it's just that simple. Eurocom should have set out to make a game people would like instead of purposely making a broken game.

I'm not saying developers shouldn't put effort into presentation, but you can't deny that it's a very risky proposition when a developer with a proven track record slips up once and is effectively destroyed by it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on December 10, 2012, 05:47:15 PM
Well according to the various analysts out there, mobile devices will eventually kill game consoles and PC's. I guess Xbox, PlayStation, and Nintendo aren't relevant anymore... I wonder if these analysts realized that mobile devices and home consoles are completely different, and are marketed to different demographics... Consoles have adapted to market changes in the past (becoming all-in-one media boxes), so why wouldn't they be able to compete in the future?

;)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: noname2200 on December 10, 2012, 05:52:39 PM



Also even if Durango/Orbis are both big tech jumps it doesn't excatly mean that Budgets will go up.

Folks said similar things last generation, along with the argument that costs will decrease over time as the tools improve. I don't think it'll be true this time either.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on December 10, 2012, 06:26:37 PM



Also even if Durango/Orbis are both big tech jumps it doesn't excatly mean that Budgets will go up.

Folks said similar things last generation, along with the argument that costs will decrease over time as the tools improve. I don't think it'll be true this time either.

The cost of current generation game development is still not cheap. Until this is fixed then I do not see Sony and Microsoft's next consoles being that much of a leap over the Wii U. The entire industry has a vested interest in driving down costs for their own survival.
 
Didn't EA say a while ago that either Dead Space 3 or Mass Effect 3 had to sell five million copies just for them to mae a profit?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: noname2200 on December 10, 2012, 06:29:55 PM

The cost of current generation game development is still not cheap. Until this is fixed then I do not see Sony and Microsoft's next consoles being that much of a leap over the Wii U. The entire industry has a vested interest in driving down costs for their own survival.
 
Didn't EA say a while ago that either Dead Space 3 or Mass Effect 3 had to sell five million copies just for them to mae a profit?

I don't recall that final quote one way or the other (not saying it wasn't said, just that I don't remember it), but I definitely think development costs are already too cost-prohibitive for the long-term health of the industry. That said, I'm decreasingly convinced that most of the big publishers care, and I'm not certain that the smaller developers (are there even any mid-sized developers left?) have enough say on the matter to do anything besides go handheld-only or make indie digital games.

Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on December 10, 2012, 06:58:59 PM

The cost of current generation game development is still not cheap. Until this is fixed then I do not see Sony and Microsoft's next consoles being that much of a leap over the Wii U. The entire industry has a vested interest in driving down costs for their own survival.
 
Didn't EA say a while ago that either Dead Space 3 or Mass Effect 3 had to sell five million copies just for them to mae a profit?

I don't recall that final quote one way or the other (not saying it wasn't said, just that I don't remember it), but I definitely think development costs are already too cost-prohibitive for the long-term health of the industry. That said, I'm decreasingly convinced that most of the big publishers care, and I'm not certain that the smaller developers (are there even any mid-sized developers left?) have enough say on the matter to do anything besides go handheld-only or make indie digital games.

Unless the industry can bring HD development costs down then I see the high cost of making games helping to usher in the era of digital retail a whole lot sooner. The reason for this is the lower barrier of market entry, reduced costs to manufacture physical media (games, booklets, etc). Do you really think that EA gives two shits about Gamestop? The answer is no. If a developer like EA can save a billion dollars by going exclusively digital then they will do it. Why do you think that Nintendo is bending over backwards to make the eShop accomodate everyone.
 
If you want to know where the real competition of the next generation will be, and I have said it many times on this forum, look no further than services. Look at hoe Microsoft is positioning the 360 to be the world's number one set-top box. Look at the Wii U with its TVii feature. This is where the consoles will really compete. Add in a better online system as well.
 
Also, Sony and Microsoft will have their own versions of the Gamepad. The graphical leap between the PS3/360 and PS4/720 will be no different than between the Gamecube and Wii. All Sony and Microsoft will do is reconfigure the hardware to accomodate streaming to their own Gamepad, and some kind of Move and Kinect successor.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: MagicCow64 on December 10, 2012, 07:07:07 PM


I don't recall that final quote one way or the other (not saying it wasn't said, just that I don't remember it), but I definitely think development costs are already too cost-prohibitive for the long-term health of the industry. That said, I'm decreasingly convinced that most of the big publishers care, and I'm not certain that the smaller developers (are there even any mid-sized developers left?) have enough say on the matter to do anything besides go handheld-only or make indie digital games.

The games industry seems to be mimicking the form of Hollywood, where a handful of major studios release dozens of productions a year, with the expectation that most will lose money and the four or five hits will put them in the black overall. The problem is that this hasn't worked out too hot for the movie industry for the most part, and movies are much easier gambles for consumers to take. $12 bucks for a movie ticket versus $60 for a game is a pretty huge differential for that model. And movies have much longer legs, with DVD sales, cable rights and whatnot. The majority of game sales (for most titles) occur within a month or two of release, and then drop off a cliff. Not much time for word of mouth to revive something that slipped past the radar before it becomes something you have to dig through Gamestops or Ebay to find.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on December 10, 2012, 07:18:25 PM

The cost of current generation game development is still not cheap. Until this is fixed then I do not see Sony and Microsoft's next consoles being that much of a leap over the Wii U. The entire industry has a vested interest in driving down costs for their own survival.
 
Didn't EA say a while ago that either Dead Space 3 or Mass Effect 3 had to sell five million copies just for them to mae a profit?

I don't recall that final quote one way or the other (not saying it wasn't said, just that I don't remember it), but I definitely think development costs are already too cost-prohibitive for the long-term health of the industry. That said, I'm decreasingly convinced that most of the big publishers care, and I'm not certain that the smaller developers (are there even any mid-sized developers left?) have enough say on the matter to do anything besides go handheld-only or make indie digital games.

Unless the industry can bring HD development costs down then I see the high cost of making games helping to usher in the era of digital retail a whole lot sooner. The reason for this is the lower barrier of market entry, reduced costs to manufacture physical media (games, booklets, etc). Do you really think that EA gives two shits about Gamestop? The answer is no. If a developer like EA can save a billion dollars by going exclusively digital then they will do it. Why do you think that Nintendo is bending over backwards to make the eShop accomodate everyone.
 
If you want to know where the real competition of the next generation will be, and I have said it many times on this forum, look no further than services. Look at hoe Microsoft is positioning the 360 to be the world's number one set-top box. Look at the Wii U with its TVii feature. This is where the consoles will really compete. Add in a better online system as well.
 
Also, Sony and Microsoft will have their own versions of the Gamepad. The graphical leap between the PS3/360 and PS4/720 will be no different than between the Gamecube and Wii. All Sony and Microsoft will do is reconfigure the hardware to accomodate streaming to their own Gamepad, and some kind of Move and Kinect successor.

The main cost for retail is unsold copies sitting there. Digital is still nowhere near big enough that most devotees can afford to ditch retail (nor would most gamers want them to). They would lose a lot of sales and exposure.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on December 10, 2012, 07:27:40 PM


I don't recall that final quote one way or the other (not saying it wasn't said, just that I don't remember it), but I definitely think development costs are already too cost-prohibitive for the long-term health of the industry. That said, I'm decreasingly convinced that most of the big publishers care, and I'm not certain that the smaller developers (are there even any mid-sized developers left?) have enough say on the matter to do anything besides go handheld-only or make indie digital games.

The games industry seems to be mimicking the form of Hollywood, where a handful of major studios release dozens of productions a year, with the expectation that most will lose money and the four or five hits will put them in the black overall. The problem is that this hasn't worked out too hot for the movie industry for the most part, and movies are much easier gambles for consumers to take. $12 bucks for a movie ticket versus $60 for a game is a pretty huge differential for that model. And movies have much longer legs, with DVD sales, cable rights and whatnot. The majority of game sales (for most titles) occur within a month or two of release, and then drop off a cliff. Not much time for word of mouth to revive something that slipped past the radar before it becomes something you have to dig through Gamestops or Ebay to find.

This is one reason why I see game developers going exclusively digital sooner or later. Think of it this way, for example, EA is hesitant to put their games on the Wii U, however, by putting their games exclusively on the Wii U's eShop then they know for sure that the hardcore games who will buy their games either way will buy the games, and the word of mouth generated by digital content is a whole lot more secure than having you games discounted in a bargain bin somewhere in Gamestop.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on December 10, 2012, 07:35:18 PM
Going all digital will result in far fewer sales, and less money. And they don't lose much money at retail, retailers get about $7 from a $60 game. Going digital will cost them a LOT of sales that they would have gotten from retail. EA being reluctant to put games on Wii U has NOTHING to do with digital sales. Word of mouth from digital sales is lower than retail. The most that will happen in the next 10 years is releasing both retail and digital. The cons off all-digital far outweigh the positives.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: broodwars on December 10, 2012, 11:56:46 PM
I'm not saying developers shouldn't put effort into presentation, but you can't deny that it's a very risky proposition when a developer with a proven track record slips up once and is effectively destroyed by it.

"Proven track record"? Alright, I'll show you a proven track record.  Remember that list of games Eurocom made this generation that I posted earlier? Alright, here are their Metacritic scores for the dominant platform they released on:

Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End (360) - 58
Beijing 2008 (360) - 60
The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor (PS2) - 38
Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs (360) - 68
G-Force (360) - 68
Dead Space: Extraction - 82
Vancouver 2010 (360) - 54
GoldenEye 007 (Wii) - 81
Rio (360) - 60
Disney Universe (360) - 66
GoldenEye 007: Reloaded (360) - 72
007 Legends (360) - 45
Harry Potter for Kinect (360) - 56

It seems to me they had a track record of putting out mediocre (and often licensed) product with the occasional flashes of quality, and we KNOW that Dead Space Extraction totally bombed in the market so even one of their better-reviewed games didn't sell well.  So yeah, it wasn't just "one slip-up."  It looks to me like a mediocre developer went under because they couldn't make good games this generation
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on December 11, 2012, 01:18:30 AM
Going exclusivly digital because they want the hardcore to pick up their game is a bad idea. Look at it this way even in the retail space Sony has done nothing but pander to the hardcore gamer all of their games barring a few this gen have bombed hard.  Microsoft used mainstream games and services and has done pretty good this generation.

But were going to see how good an all digital console will do next year. Other than Durango and Orbis, both the Steambox and Oyua are probably coming out next year as well.


Also I remember the quote from EA being that they expected dead space to sell around Call of Duty numbers (10 million copies day 1). It won't happen and I'm expecting the game will still do good (1 million the first month) but it will be considered a flop because EA doesn't have its expectations in check.

Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on December 11, 2012, 09:27:27 AM
Steam box and Ouya are not consoles, they are gimped PCs. Ouya will at best be very niche.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on December 11, 2012, 11:05:59 AM
Going all digital will result in far fewer sales, and less money. And they don't lose much money at retail, retailers get about $7 from a $60 game. Going digital will cost them a LOT of sales that they would have gotten from retail. EA being reluctant to put games on Wii U has NOTHING to do with digital sales. Word of mouth from digital sales is lower than retail. The most that will happen in the next 10 years is releasing both retail and digital. The cons off all-digital far outweigh the positives.

Going all digital worked for the music industry, book industry, and the movie industry. Apple's iTunes changed the music industy forever, giving music labels an incentive for monetizing MP3's. Netflix brought streaming via subscription to the masses. And Amazon's Kindle made eBooks more popular than ever.

So if digital worked for those industries, why couldn't it work for gaming? Oh wait, it already is working. Again, look at Apple's iOS devices and the App Store. Look at what Sony, Microsoft, and Valve are doing. Steam is the main distribution service for most PC games these days. The future of Xbox will be moving to the cloud, if that leaked document is any proof. And Sony bought Gaikai for similar reasons. There's also PSN and Xbox Live, which have proven to be very popular with consumers and publishers.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: lolmonade on December 11, 2012, 11:56:45 AM
Going all digital will result in far fewer sales, and less money. And they don't lose much money at retail, retailers get about $7 from a $60 game. Going digital will cost them a LOT of sales that they would have gotten from retail. EA being reluctant to put games on Wii U has NOTHING to do with digital sales. Word of mouth from digital sales is lower than retail. The most that will happen in the next 10 years is releasing both retail and digital. The cons off all-digital far outweigh the positives.

Going all digital worked for the music industry, book industry, and the movie industry. Apple's iTunes changed the music industy forever, giving music labels an incentive for monetizing MP3's. Netflix brought streaming via subscription to the masses. And Amazon's Kindle made eBooks more popular than ever.

So if digital worked for those industries, why couldn't it work for gaming? Oh wait, it already is working. Again, look at Apple's iOS devices and the App Store. Look at what Sony, Microsoft, and Valve are doing. Steam is the main distribution service for most PC games these days. The future of Xbox will be moving to the cloud, if that leaked document is any proof. And Sony bought Gaikai for similar reasons. There's also PSN and Xbox Live, which have proven to be very popular with consumers and publishers.

None of your examples are proof of concept for all-digital:
 
  I will agree with the notion that these industries have finally started at least offering the option of either physical or digital product, but none of them have taken the plunge to all-digital. 
 
Will there eventually be a transition to all-digital for everything including gaming?  Absolutely, but not until the later generations of people and people like myself who want those physical copies stop being a large segment of the buying market.
 
 
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: nickmitch on December 11, 2012, 12:09:27 PM
The future of Xbox will be moving to the cloud, if that leaked document is any proof. And Sony bought Gaikai for similar reasons. There's also PSN and Xbox Live, which have proven to be very popular with consumers and publishers.

I wouldn't say that companies investing in a concept necessarily means that the concept is already successful.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: broodwars on December 11, 2012, 12:16:26 PM
The future of Xbox will be moving to the cloud, if that leaked document is any proof. And Sony bought Gaikai for similar reasons. There's also PSN and Xbox Live, which have proven to be very popular with consumers and publishers.

I wouldn't say that companies investing in a concept necessarily means that the concept is already successful.

What are you talking about? I remember vividly when the Wii Vitality Sensor took the world by storm, just as the massively popular Virtual Boy did.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: noname2200 on December 11, 2012, 12:40:17 PM
Steam box and Ouya are not consoles, they are gimped PCs. Ouya will at best be very niche.

Not to be ironic here or anything, but aren't consoles also basically gimped PCs?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on December 11, 2012, 02:04:38 PM
No, they are dedicated game machines. Ouya and Steambox will literally just be PCs that are stripped down.

tendo, as lol said, NONE of those industries are digital only. With music, 99% of all music is still in physical format too. Same with books and movies. Digital only is a flawed strategy that is YEARS away from even being viable. Cloud gaming is especially flawed because no one wants to be prevented from playing their games due to Internet being down and many areas don't have broadband yet.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: noname2200 on December 11, 2012, 02:18:24 PM
I'm failing to see the difference. Consoles are just PCs that have been streamlined to make playing games easier; no need to worry about individual specs, etc. If Ouya and Steambox run on similar principles, what does it matter if the games they play could also be played on a normal PC? In fact, don't Ouya games have to be tailor made for the system, a la home consoles?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on December 11, 2012, 03:51:48 PM
Ouya is a joke. For one thing, the company is encouraging people to pirate games on it (which will not get more developers to support it). There are a whole host of reasons Ouya will fail, but I won't get into that. As for Steambox, I don't see the market for it. The people who would buy it likely already have the capability to play their PC games on their TV (it's not hard) and a casual gamer will not go through the effort.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on December 11, 2012, 09:42:19 PM
Ouya is a joke. For one thing, the company is encouraging people to pirate games on it (which will not get more developers to support it). There are a whole host of reasons Ouya will fail, but I won't get into that. As for Steambox, I don't see the market for it. The people who would buy it likely already have the capability to play their PC games on their TV (it's not hard) and a casual gamer will not go through the effort.


But Steambox is essentially a home console for Steam games. It's more convenient than playing on a PC because  the hardware is optimized to play those games without any tweaking.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on December 11, 2012, 09:47:10 PM
It's still a PC. The people who would use the Steambox already have Steam and have PCs optimized for PC gaming.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on December 11, 2012, 09:48:22 PM
No, they are dedicated game machines. Ouya and Steambox will literally just be PCs that are stripped down.

tendo, as lol said, NONE of those industries are digital only. With music, 99% of all music is still in physical format too. Same with books and movies. Digital only is a flawed strategy that is YEARS away from even being viable. Cloud gaming is especially flawed because no one wants to be prevented from playing their games due to Internet being down and many areas don't have broadband yet.


A majority of music is purchased digitally (through iTunes, Google Play, Amazon, etc.). Movies and TV are moving to the digital realm as well, with services like Netflix and Hulu. TV is already a digital format (cable, satellite), so it doesn't really compare.


Gaming on Xbox Live Arcade, PSN, eShop, mobile devices (etc.) is convenient because everything is stored on the device itself.


Whether you're streaming or downloading, digital entertainment is here to stay. Like it or not.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on December 11, 2012, 10:04:23 PM
It will be many YEARS before any significant things are digital only like you claim they already are.

Also, as of 2011 only about 20% of songs were purchased digitally and fewer purchased whole albums. The number is higher when you factor in free streaming services like YouTube and Pandora, and illegal downloads, but the fact remains that most music is still purchased in physical formats. Even fewer movies and TV shows are purchased digitally. So you are wrong in claiming they are all or mostly digital, and more wrong in saying games should copy them.

When you get to cloud services, that is even further away since there are too many negatives.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on December 12, 2012, 12:22:04 AM
Have a sinking feeling that if Sega doesn't get its act together it might end up on this list next year. They don't have much slated for next year and I have a feeling their major title will flop (Aliens, I am expecting decent wii U numbers).   

I think they need to go back to the well and start reinventing their old franchises for the retail and digital space. (Being mid range in both cases)

The streets of Rage DD demo by Ruffian Games that leaked a few days ago looked pretty promising to bring back Beat em ups.

Sega going into 2014 should try and have keep their current Mantra (a few retail titles a year and mostly digital). In a just word their line up would look like

Retail
Sonic 2014 (keep following the colors and generations model)
Next Yakuza game
A proper single player Phantasy star
The next Total War game or what every is done by that dev
Football manager
Virtua Fighter 6

Digital
Mostly new IP and sequels to stuff like strets of Rage and toe jam and earl.

Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on December 17, 2012, 02:33:22 PM
It appears as though EA will be excluded from the NASDAQ starting december 26th.
 
http://www.theverge.com/2012/12/16/3773242/nasdaq-100-drops-rim-netflix-ea-adds-facebook (http://www.theverge.com/2012/12/16/3773242/nasdaq-100-drops-rim-netflix-ea-adds-facebook)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: nickmitch on December 17, 2012, 02:40:34 PM
The Netlfix move surprise me. They were on a bit of an upswing after the whole price jump debacle. (What was the name of the DVD company going to be again?) I guess it just wasn't enough of a turnaround. RIM might've been overdue for a bump.
EA isn't the most surprising. I think investors would be scared of investing in gaming companies with the whole "social/mobile gaming is the future!" mantras and the poor financial performance by companies who are solely in that space.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on December 17, 2012, 02:46:46 PM
This is why I think that EA is not going to welcome a new Playstation and Xbox and the higher development costs that go go along with it for a very long time. They may support the systems out in the open, but behind closed doors they would rather milk this generation for wha it's worth.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on December 17, 2012, 02:53:00 PM
Being delisted doesn't mean they are doing bad, just that they are not among the 100 most profitable.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: NWR_insanolord on December 17, 2012, 02:54:05 PM
I think the only people who really want a big jump in hardware power are a certain segment of the hardcore gamers. I get the impression almost nobody who's actually making games (or at least paying for the making of said games) wants a major leap. They want something more along the lines of a more powerful Wii U, that's somewhat more powerful but is mostly an increase in RAM and GPU capabilities.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on December 17, 2012, 03:59:56 PM
This is why I think that EA is not going to welcome a new Playstation and Xbox and the higher development costs that go go along with it for a very long time. They may support the systems out in the open, but behind closed doors they would rather milk this generation for wha it's worth.


EA has been rumored to have either early Durango or Orbis dev kits since around E3 2011.

Also EA is expected to have a massive year coming up. Dead Space 3, Sim City, Comand and Conquear, and Dragon Age 3, and battlefield 4 among other things.

Also you really don't think EA plans to do another massive overhaul of Madden/Fifa.  I think they're going to have the same engine for every sports game.

People said the same thing about the Wii when its development costs were lower than the other systems. 



Eh I think most developers want a bigger spec jump than the Wii U. Crytek said they wanted 32GB of ram and hinted that the other next gen systems will have 4-6GB of ram.

With a smart dev unless your working on a major game I'm not expecting costs to increase that much with Durango/Orbis.


The biggest factor that needs to change for the other next gen consoles are more developer friendly in some aspects of the online.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: nickmitch on December 17, 2012, 05:47:07 PM
People said the same thing about the Wii when its development costs were lower than the other systems. 

But then you can say the opposite for the DS. I think the PS360 did make a huge cost jump for devs, but when they saw what they could make with it over the Wii, they liked it better. Now, they still haven't really maxed out the current gen, so another huge jump wouldn't be worth it.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on December 17, 2012, 06:05:50 PM
Crytek are high if they think consoles will have 32GB of RAM anytime soon, even the top of the line gaming PC's max out at 32GB and that is far more than any PC game requires.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: NWR_insanolord on December 17, 2012, 06:29:47 PM
Crytek is an outlier. They'd welcome a major power jump. EA/Activision/Ubisoft and the like, however, I doubt are in that much of a hurry.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on December 17, 2012, 07:06:30 PM
While the power jump is mixed opinions I do think the industry are in need of new consoles now. While the 360 and PS3 put up great numbers for a 6-7 year old console during black Friday sales have been going down on systems and software.

One company I am kind of worried about is Obsdian games.  I think South Park will do good enough too keep them alive alongside project eterinty. Only thing is what's next. The project they had for a next gen games with microsoft was canceled (though I think they're in talks to try to start ut back up). Really think they need to look at doublefine as a way to move from retail to digital only.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: NWR_insanolord on December 17, 2012, 07:14:16 PM
I can see why Microsoft or Sony might want new consoles, but even there they're both making more money right now than they would be if they were taking a loss on new hardware. The big third party publishers have no real reason to want new hardware.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on December 17, 2012, 08:00:30 PM
I see what you mean its probably different looking at it from a gamer than someone on the inside. Just think the industry needs a bit of a refresh to work on new IP and genres.

I think at least the next xbox will do pretty well around launch to justify it. Its been implied that alongside just straight upselling Durango at the $400 price point that they will be selling subsidized versions of the console for $99-$200. They've been testing that on the west coast with the 360 than the summer.


I think that with the expection of a few games most titles are going to be cross gen downports or whole other versions. I'm expecting say madden/fifa/live to be completely different games than the 360/PS3/Wii U version similar to how the 360 was announced.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on December 18, 2012, 08:53:40 PM
Australian developer Big Ant Studios has entered into voluntary liquidation (meaning they are shutting down). Most of their games are only released in Australia, like cricket and rugby games. They also developed the GBA versions of The Legend of Spyro: A New Beginning and The Legend of Spyro: The Eternal Night, and the PSP version of Hellboy: The Science of Evil.

http://www.gamespot.com/news/big-ant-studios-enters-liquidation-6401724
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on December 19, 2012, 02:58:12 PM
http://www.polygon.com/2012/12/19/3784984/thq-files-for-bankruptcy-protection-selling-studios-and-games

Looks like THQ is filing for bankruptcy and is going to sell off its assets.

here's a gaf thread with a better explanation of what might happen next.

 http://m.neogaf.com/showthread.php?t=504815

Still there's 30 days for someone to make a bid on that.

Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: ThePerm on December 23, 2012, 11:03:00 PM
we actually have a separate redundant thread for the THQ thing
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on December 24, 2012, 05:28:28 PM
I can see Ubisoft buying a few THQ franchises (Saints Row and Darksiders). WWE could go to 2K or EA, and Warhammer could go to Blizzard.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Louieturkey on December 26, 2012, 06:46:07 PM
Or Ubi will just buy the whole thing.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on December 26, 2012, 07:17:56 PM
Ubisoft's CEO has only said they would be interested in some of THQ's franchises, so I don't think they would buy the whole company. For what it's worth, THQ still plans to release games already in development (including WWE '14, which they started developing back in October), maybe because THQ still owes WWE about $45 million.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: noname2200 on December 27, 2012, 06:19:08 PM
Based on my understanding of bankruptcy law, whether WWE gets any of that money is entirely up the bankruptcy trustee. Since I believe the WWE is an unsecured creditor, my guess is that most, if not all, of that cash is going to go to other sources.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on December 27, 2012, 08:36:19 PM
I would think that the WWE license is a big money-maker for THQ... right?


Who pays who in that situation? Does WWE pay THQ to use the license, or does THQ pay WWE?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on December 27, 2012, 08:38:33 PM
Why would WWE pay THQ? THQ are making the products, so they pay. When you license something, you pay that company. So THQ pays WWE to license the rights to WWE's product, then makes games based on it. $45 million is what THQ still owes WWE as part of their multi-year contract. The WWE games tend to do pretty well (and WWE helps by promoting the hell out of the games every year).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: ThePerm on December 29, 2012, 02:24:16 PM
if anything the Shovelware companies should be forced to go all digital. They pollute the shelves.

As far as the licensing goes. THQ won a bidding war against other video game companies to make WWE games. The last company that had the WWE license was Acclaim. Acclaim went out of business. (acclaim is back but in name only, scratch that they are out of business too)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: ThePerm on January 12, 2013, 06:59:51 PM
http://i.imgur.com/lmIzT.png
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Caliban on January 12, 2013, 10:51:10 PM
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

I liked that one, ThePerm.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on January 21, 2013, 10:14:08 AM
Atari US (owned by French company Atari SA), has filed for bankruptcy and plans to sell off assets like Pong, Centipede, Missile Command, and Asteroids. They even plan to sell of their company logo (though apparently not the name).

http://www.forbes.com/sites/insertcoin/2013/01/21/atari-us-files-for-bankruptcy-sells-assets-logo/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: broodwars on January 21, 2013, 10:41:21 AM
Atari US (owned by French company Atari SA), has filed for bankruptcy and plans to sell off assets like Pong, Centipede, Missile Command, and Asteroids. They even plan to sell of their company logo (though apparently not the name).

http://www.forbes.com/sites/insertcoin/2013/01/21/atari-us-files-for-bankruptcy-sells-assets-logo/ (http://www.forbes.com/sites/insertcoin/2013/01/21/atari-us-files-for-bankruptcy-sells-assets-logo/)

I honestly didn't think Atari still existed, so I can't say I'll miss the loss of its empty shell.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on January 21, 2013, 10:53:19 AM
I think their most recent game was RollerCoaster Tycoon 3D on 3DS.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on January 21, 2013, 11:19:54 AM
Atari has been dead a while now.

Also the THQ Auction is tomorrow
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: nickmitch on January 21, 2013, 07:34:38 PM
But that hasn't been same Atari, right? Not since the French company bought them. Infogrames?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on January 21, 2013, 07:55:52 PM
Right. Infogrames bought a stake in the company in 2003, then fully purchased the company in 2008 (then preceded to change their own name from Infogrames to Atari SA). Part of the bankruptcy is because Atari US wants to separate itself from its money-losing parent company. Atari has a very long and complicated history:

*Founded in 1972 by Nolan Bushnell and Ted Dabney
*Sold to Warner Communications (now known as Time Warner after merging with Time Inc. in 1989) in 1976
*Sold the home computer and console division to Jack Tramiel (founder of Coleco) in 1984, who renamed it Atari Corporation. Warner kept the arcade division (renaming it Atari Games) and also had a 20% stake in Atari Corp.
*Merged with disk drive manufacturer JTS in 1996 and became a subsidiary of it
*In 1998 Hasbro bought all the trademarks and IPs of Atari (initially they just wanted to license some of their IPs like Pong, but then saw they could purchase the whole company for just $5 million) and renamed it Atari Interactive, making it part of their Hasbro Interactive unit
*In 2001 Infogrames licensed the Atari name for use in games.
*In 2003, Infogrames purchase part o Atari and renamed their US branch Atari Inc. and the European branch Atari Europe. In 2008 they purchased the remaining shares of the company. In 2009, they renamed their selves Atari SA.

Making things even murkier, in 2009 Namco Bandai purchased a 34% share of Atari Europe.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on January 23, 2013, 03:35:38 PM
THQ and Vigil are both gone as of today.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on January 23, 2013, 03:42:42 PM
Here is the proposed plan breakdown THQ presented:

• Sega will purchase Relic Entertainment.
• Koch Media (parent company of Deep Silver) will purchase Volition Inc. and the Metro franchise.
• Crytek will purchase Homefront.
• Take-Two Interactive will purchase Evolve.
• Ubisoft will purchase THQ Montreal and South Park: The Stick of Truth.


The fate of Vigil Games and the Darksiders IP is not known yet.


http://www.gamespot.com/news/thq-dissolved-6402838
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: EasyCure on January 23, 2013, 08:49:00 PM
Here is the proposed plan breakdown THQ presented:

• Sega will purchase Relic Entertainment.
• Koch Media (parent company of Deep Silver) will purchase Volition Inc. and the Metro franchise.
• Crytek will purchase Homefront.
• Take-Two Interactive will purchase Evolve.
• Ubisoft will purchase THQ Montreal and South Park: The Stick of Truth.


The fate of Vigil Games and the Darksiders IP is not known yet.


http://www.gamespot.com/news/thq-dissolved-6402838

I wonder if Ubisoft will try to bring over the South Park game to Wii U.. please Ubisoft, please...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: tendoboy1984 on January 26, 2013, 02:07:22 PM
Deep Silver? That no-name shovelware company? What will they do with Saints Row?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: TJ Spyke on January 26, 2013, 02:14:46 PM
Deep Silver? That no-name shovelware company? What will they do with Saints Row?

Shovelware? You are the same person who called 505 Games shovelware (until I showed you they aren't). They made the under-rated Wii game Cursed Mountain, they also publish the Dead Island games They also localize many games in Europe (for example, they published Nintendo's CrossworDS in Europe). So I think they could do a good job with Saints Row.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: Kytim89 on January 26, 2013, 04:00:48 PM
Who will be the next game company to go under?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2012
Post by: shingi_70 on January 26, 2013, 04:39:42 PM
I would assume publish Saints Row 4 and Metro Last Light alongside Dead Island Rip Tide, 

While this company was on low burn I think your going to see them try to take thq's place next gen,
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Kytim89 on January 28, 2013, 08:16:19 PM
It appears that Junction Point has been shut down due to the poor sales of Epic Mickey 2. http://www.ign.com/articles/2013/01/28/epic-mickey-studio-junction-point-reportedly-closed (http://www.ign.com/articles/2013/01/28/epic-mickey-studio-junction-point-reportedly-closed)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Do_What on January 29, 2013, 10:17:30 AM
If only they could've made a good game. Sucks they're getting shut down though.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: S-U-P-E-R on February 03, 2013, 02:14:15 AM
Does a game retailer count? Eh heh

(http://i.imgur.com/kPhKePe.jpg)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Shaymin on February 03, 2013, 10:17:00 AM
It would but for the fact that HMV was largely a music store.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: TJ Spyke on February 03, 2013, 06:20:30 PM
Sounds like a bitter employee upset that he is not good enough to avoid being fired. It's like when the person gets fired, then claims they are quitting. Sorry, but he is just a bitter ex-employee.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: oohhboy on February 03, 2013, 08:53:27 PM
You never been fired have you? The coal face employees are usually the first to know whats wrong with an organization and the first to get scapegoated. In this case there isn't a level of "Good enough" to avoid being fired. They are going into insolvency, unless you're upper managment, nobody stays. Personal ability has nothing to do as to why they are bing fired.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: S-U-P-E-R on February 04, 2013, 01:22:31 AM
Sounds like a bitter employee upset that he is not good enough to avoid being fired. It's like when the person gets fired, then claims they are quitting. Sorry, but he is just a bitter ex-employee.

Yes, I'm sure an entire department of 60 people got cut in a merger because they didn't hoist themselves by their own bootstraps hard enough. Are you for real, man?

(http://i.imgur.com/tGaefDL.png)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Kytim89 on February 06, 2013, 05:03:21 PM
Gamestop is expected to close 500 stores this year.http://gamercheeese.com/2013/02/03/gamestop-to-close-500-stores-in-2013/ (http://gamercheeese.com/2013/02/03/gamestop-to-close-500-stores-in-2013/)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Ceric on February 06, 2013, 05:10:35 PM
What is HMV?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: TJ Spyke on February 06, 2013, 05:14:46 PM
What is HMV?

Basically like a British version of FYE. They sell music, movies, video games, concert tickets.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: tendoboy1984 on February 07, 2013, 09:50:21 AM
FYE is still around?

And it's sad to see THQ go under. They may not have had the biggest franchises (aside from WWE), but I enjoyed Darksiders and Saints Row immensely. Saints Row is a worthy GTA clone, and it closely resembles the PS2 games in terms of gameplay and presentation (cartoony and over-the-top).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: oohhboy on February 07, 2013, 10:16:13 AM
GTA is way overrated. SW is better in the gameplay department especially the gunplay which actually works.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: TJ Spyke on February 07, 2013, 11:50:49 AM
FYE is still around?

And it's sad to see THQ go under. They may not have had the biggest franchises (aside from WWE), but I enjoyed Darksiders and Saints Row immensely. Saints Row is a worthy GTA clone, and it closely resembles the PS2 games in terms of gameplay and presentation (cartoony and over-the-top).

Guess you haven't been in too many malls lately. Yes, FYE is still around.

And GTA is not over-rated, GTA IV was a great game.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: shingi_70 on February 08, 2013, 03:02:41 PM
http://epicgames.com/community/2013/02/a-message-from-tim-sweeney/

Epic has closed down impossible games the studio they formed last year of former bog huge games guys and who was working on Infinity Blade Legends. (It was even their project to begin with)

Makes me wonder why they didn't have the guys who made Kingdoms of Amluar Recokning make a Fucking Spiritual Successor to KOA I stead of an iPad diablo clone especially since the unreal 4 tech demo took place in a fantasy land.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Ceric on February 08, 2013, 03:32:37 PM
What is HMV?

Basically like a British version of FYE. They sell music, movies, video games, concert tickets.
My next question would be what is FYE? (We don't have that in TN)

But its pretty much a Sam's Goodie, Cat's Record, McKays, etc.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: MagicCow64 on February 08, 2013, 03:41:20 PM
DEATHWATCH

http://www.gamespot.com/news/sony-shares-slide-most-in-four-years-6403674
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Louieturkey on February 08, 2013, 04:59:07 PM
DEATHWATCH

http://www.gamespot.com/news/sony-shares-slide-most-in-four-years-6403674

How is that deathwatch?  Sony would not go under for a few years from now.  They've slowed the bleeding.  My guess is if things do become dire, they are more likely to be bought out by Panasonic or Samsung before they ever file bankruptcy.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: MagicCow64 on February 08, 2013, 06:16:17 PM
Deathwatch, Games Industry. This is a pretty big acknowledgment that Vita is tanking. I've seen numerous articles now parroting the PR line that all the industry needs is a new gen to toot up, but the fundamentals are looking less and less sound.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Kytim89 on February 08, 2013, 07:39:15 PM
If you are quiet enough you can actually hear a giant guillotine being raised for the entire gaming industry. The wave of companies going bankrupt is only going to get more intense as budgets continue to grow. Even the major console makers are not immune to this dilemma, and Sony is the best example of this. Once the FPS bubble bursts then developers like Activision might go bankrupt.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: TJ Spyke on February 08, 2013, 07:53:32 PM
Kytim, EVERY generation you have developers and publishers go out of business. And you have new ones take there place.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: shingi_70 on February 08, 2013, 09:40:02 PM
If you are quiet enough you can actually hear a giant guillotine being raised for the entire gaming industry. The wave of companies going bankrupt is only going to get more intense as budgets continue to grow. Even the major console makers are not immune to this dilemma, and Sony is the best example of this. Once the FPS bubble bursts then developers like Activision might go bankrupt.

Well in the case of Sony it wasmismangmwnt as a company and not being able to compete in other dovsions as well. The PS3 debacle got accelerated a decline that was already happening.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Kytim89 on February 13, 2013, 01:21:28 AM
My inner Aliens fan wants to predict that Gear Box will be on the chopping block by next year, or by the end of this one. 
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: azeke on February 13, 2013, 01:25:48 AM
My inner Aliens fan wants to predict that Gear Box will be on the chopping block by next year, or by the end of this one.
Borderlands
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: TJ Spyke on February 13, 2013, 01:27:28 AM
Speaking of Gearbox Software, Aliens: Colonial Marines is getting SLAMMED by reviews. The Xbox 360 version has a 50 average on Metacritic (1 positive review from EGM, 17 mixed reviews, 9 negative), PlayStation 3 has a 46 average (0 positive reviews, 4 mixed, 6 negative), PC has a 44 average (1 positive, 8 mixed, 11 negative).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: alegoicoe on February 13, 2013, 03:31:19 AM
Gearbox placed their bets on the WII U version :cool;
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: azeke on February 13, 2013, 03:53:05 AM
Speaking of Gearbox Software, Aliens: Colonial Marines is getting SLAMMED by reviews.
That was a good call to delay this game on Wii U.

Now i don't need to buy it, thanks Gearbox!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: shingi_70 on February 13, 2013, 04:07:02 AM
Gearbox is no where near close to dying.

They still have Borderlands, what ever furious four has become, and a proper brothers in arms game on the works.

Though it is interesting that they have put out Twp really bad games and are still here. That can't be said for most guys today.

Expecting to see Insomniac on this list if dues bombs and they aren't bought by Sony.

Also expecting sadly to see that game company as well.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Ceric on February 13, 2013, 10:53:47 AM
I'm sort of curious if Demiurge Studios I believe are the ones making the WiiU version are going to make a none broken version.  That would indeed be hilarious.  WiiU: It may take longer to get the game but at least you can play it right.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Fatty The Hutt on February 13, 2013, 11:48:57 AM
Is it bad that I still want Aliens: Clonial Marines on the Wii U? It's practically review-proof for me.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 13, 2013, 10:55:04 PM
Is it bad that I still want Aliens: Clonial Marines on the Wii U? It's practically review-proof for me.

It was on my maybe list, so please let me know how accurate the bad reviews are.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: tendoboy1984 on February 21, 2013, 09:09:31 PM
Gearbox is no where near close to dying.

They still have Borderlands, what ever furious four has become, and a proper brothers in arms game on the works.

Though it is interesting that they have put out Twp really bad games and are still here. That can't be said for most guys today.

Expecting to see Insomniac on this list if dues bombs and they aren't bought by Sony.

Also expecting sadly to see that game company as well.


Insomniac still has Ratchet & Clank. Yes the series is owned by Sony, but I guess Insomniac still loves it enough to keep making new games.


Now where's my Crash Bandicoot reboot? If Activision isn't doing anything with it, they should give the series back to Naughty Dog.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: azeke on February 21, 2013, 09:56:32 PM
Now where's my Crash Bandicoot reboot? If Activision isn't doing anything with it, they should give the series back to Naughty Dog.
There was a photo from Vicarious Visions offices with "new" Crash redesign:
(http://www.crash-universe.ru/images/news/new_crash_game.jpg)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: tendoboy1984 on February 21, 2013, 10:08:33 PM
Those Popeye arms! No thank you. I liked the Tex Avery-style design of the original Crash.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Kytim89 on February 21, 2013, 11:12:45 PM
EA shuts down Visceral Montreal.




http://www.ea.com/news/transition-is-our-friend?sourceid=Origin_AFF_LS315&c=TnL5HPStwNw&LSsiteID=TnL5HPStwNw-lp1E_RHLc_5v7dP7A9Ex2g
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: TJ Spyke on February 21, 2013, 11:48:54 PM
EA shuts down Visceral Montreal.




http://www.ea.com/news/transition-is-our-friend?sourceid=Origin_AFF_LS315&c=TnL5HPStwNw&LSsiteID=TnL5HPStwNw-lp1E_RHLc_5v7dP7A9Ex2g

Um, that doesn't say that shut down Visceral Games's Montreal studio, just that they let some people in Los Angeles and Montreal go.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Louieturkey on February 22, 2013, 12:28:24 PM
Looks like Ziff Davis is shutting down 1UP and Gamespy and a couple other sites that they recently acquired in the IGN sale.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: TJ Spyke on July 12, 2013, 10:24:51 AM
Electronic Arts has shut down German studio EA Phenomic. The studio developed games like Spellforce and Command & Conquer: Tiberium Alliances and employed 60 people.

http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2013-07-12-ea-phenomic-closed
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: pokepal148 on September 01, 2013, 10:38:26 PM
http://venturebeat.com/2013/08/05/zynga-omgpop-finally-shuts-draw-something-developer-omgpop-that-it-bought-for-180m/ (http://venturebeat.com/2013/08/05/zynga-omgpop-finally-shuts-draw-something-developer-omgpop-that-it-bought-for-180m/)
http://www.neoseeker.com/news/23741-layoffs-hit-sony-online-entertainment-offices-in-san-diego-and-austin/ (http://www.neoseeker.com/news/23741-layoffs-hit-sony-online-entertainment-offices-in-san-diego-and-austin/)
http://www.examiner.com/article/layoffs-hit-tomb-raider-studio (http://www.examiner.com/article/layoffs-hit-tomb-raider-studio)
ouch
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: pokepal148 on September 18, 2013, 07:12:55 PM
http://www.gamnesia.com/news/capcom-only-has-152-million-going-into-next-gen-focus-on-dlc-and-mobile (http://www.gamnesia.com/news/capcom-only-has-152-million-going-into-next-gen-focus-on-dlc-and-mobile)

As hard as it is to sympathize with them on this situation it still does not bode well for the industry as a whole.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: shingi_70 on September 18, 2013, 07:22:05 PM
http://www.gamnesia.com/news/capcom-only-has-152-million-going-into-next-gen-focus-on-dlc-and-mobile (http://www.gamnesia.com/news/capcom-only-has-152-million-going-into-next-gen-focus-on-dlc-and-mobile)

As hard as it is to sympathize with them on this situation it still does not bode well for the industry as a whole.

Eh is it really bad for the Industry when Capcom squandered everything they had like Square-enix did. Capcom actually started the current gen pretty strong with a slew of established and New IP being hits. It isn't the Industry's fault Capcom was able to squander all of that.

It makes sense that Deep Down and Dead Rising  are being treated as Sony/Microsoft IP at this point. I honestly don't expect either games to go Multiplatform.

Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: pokepal148 on September 18, 2013, 07:26:37 PM
But they still have Monster Hunter which still sells at ridiculous levels. That series is often credited with saving the PSP in Japan. If that can't keep them a fair distance from the red then either they really screwed up or the industry is in worse shape then we thought.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: shingi_70 on September 18, 2013, 07:50:18 PM
But they still have Monster Hunter which still sells at ridiculous levels. That series is often credited with saving the PSP in Japan. If that can't keep them a fair distance from the red then either they really screwed up or the industry is in worse shape then we thought.

It won't one profitable low cost IP won't save the company when you factor in everything else. Hell Monster Hunter nicheness in the west is probably stifling how much the series could be bringing in.

This is the company who's saying that Street Fighter 5 won't be out till 2018 and that's probably their only other franchise other than Monster Hunter that has good will at this point.

http://www.eventhubs.com/news/2013/aug/05/tomoaki-ayano-street-fighter-5-may-not-drop-until-2018-if-sfxt-characters-usf4-were-copy-paste-theyd-be-strongest-game/

Not sure how much money Capcom gets but they have a problem that most of the gaming populance looking at dead rising/Monster Hunter/Deep Down see them as Capcom games rather than Microsoft/nntendo/sony games.

I think Capcom and Konami for that matter would gain a lot by looking to Sega on how to get back on their feet. As far as Capcom goes I'd day

-Focus on a few tenpole retail games each yea.
-make up the rest in the Handheld/DD space.

I mean demote whoever made Resident Evil 6 and promote the revelations team to the main development studio and give the story a reboot that hinges on its survival horror roots. 

Why the **** haven't they invested in Megaman for the Download space. Mega Man 9 and 10 were successes and Megaman is a concept that didn't take to 3D well.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Kytim89 on September 18, 2013, 07:57:48 PM
Considering how Capcom handled Resident Evil 6 I do not feel sorry for them (except the employees).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Luigi Dude on September 18, 2013, 11:00:51 PM
It's rather funny how all of Capcom's problems are do to them becoming obsessed with making their games more Western, when many of Capcom's series were already very popular in the West.  Hell, most Western third person shooters this last gen were inspired by Resident Evil 4.  Or the fact Devil May Cry 4 was the best selling game in the series with 2.7 million copies but they decide to completely reboot the series just because the God of War series sold better.


Capcom is the perfect example of a company that was just fine the way they were, only to ruin themselves by trying to change to fix a problem they never had in the first place.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Adrock on September 18, 2013, 11:01:14 PM
Megaman is a concept that didn't take to 3D well.
And yet people still want Legends 3. Capcom is still pretending no one likes Mega Man. Maybe they'll change their minds when Super Smash Bros. comes out.

The smartest thing Capcom has done lately is develop Monster Hunter 4 for 3DS. I'm a little curious why they haven't shifted more development to the platform. 3DS sells well everywhere, including Japan, and it would allow them to lower budgets while reaching a very large audience. Continuing on the path of HD development with games like Dead Rising 3 and Deep Down when that already didn't work out seems like a bad move.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on September 18, 2013, 11:14:22 PM
I can guarantee Capcom atleast 1 sale of an Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 U Edition.

I really want a MvC game on my Wii U Capcom. That could have been profit maker for you, I told you this at E3 but you didn't want to listen. You missed out on all the Wii money Capcom by ignoring us with all those games that "weren't possible on Wii" or "didn't fit the (supposed) demographic" or "didn't have a unique way to utilize the wiimote".

It's your own fault, and many others too, and even though we've been shouting this too you for the past 5+ years, hind sight is 20/20 and it's too late to go back and do it right.

But please, just do 2 things before you go.

1. Sell Megaman to Nintendo - you weren't doing anything with him anyway.
2. Get me the Ultimate MvC3 U we talked about at E3.

thanks.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: shingi_70 on September 18, 2013, 11:19:47 PM
The only franchise of Capcom's that really needed to be westernized imo was Monster Hnter and Capcom did a good job of that with Dragon's Dogma.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: ThePerm on September 19, 2013, 03:57:30 PM
Well if Capcom does poor enough Nintendo can buy them and flip them. Sega and Nintendo relationship has been close lately. one day :P
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: nickmitch on September 19, 2013, 10:17:39 PM
Nintendo buying Sega AND Capcom is every Nintendo fanboy's pipe dream right now.

Maybe in an ideal world.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Stratos on September 20, 2013, 02:13:08 AM
Marvel Vs Nintendo? Super Smash Marvel?


Disney owns Marvel so this could get very complicated or awesome really fast.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: ShyGuy on September 20, 2013, 04:13:12 PM
Mario vs Ryu vs Hulk vs Darth Vader vs Kermit the Frog vs Uncle Scrooge vs...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Arbok on September 20, 2013, 11:47:48 PM
I can guarantee Capcom atleast 1 sale of an Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 U Edition.

Make that two guaranteed sales.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2013
Post by: Luigi Dude on February 18, 2014, 03:50:52 PM
Time to update that list again, Irrational Games is shutting down.  This was the studio that made Bioshock and Bioshock Infinite for anyone who didn't know.

http://www.irrationalgames.com/ (http://www.irrationalgames.com/)


Yep, the traditional gaming industry is still healthy and with the PS4/One raising cost even more, it'll only get healthier.  :)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: oohhboy on February 18, 2014, 05:24:34 PM
That is pretty messed up. I heard they were a little under expectations in regards to Infinite, but that one ball was enough to sink them? AAA is real healthy alright.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: pokepal148 on February 18, 2014, 05:32:14 PM
Yo Nintendo get shopping now
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: Phil on February 18, 2014, 05:47:19 PM
That is pretty messed up. I heard they were a little under expectations in regards to Infinite, but that one ball was enough to sink them? AAA is real healthy alright.


When you have a team that is made up of 100-200 people, and they take five or more years to make a game, even one that gets four million sales in four months, there's an issue here. Paying a salary all those years, marketing, etc. It adds up. Apparently it added up to much more than what Take Two made from Infinite's sales.


EDIT: Anyway, I agree with you. The AAA business model is unsustainable, and has been for quite a while now.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: Stogi on February 18, 2014, 05:58:36 PM
The higher development costs all around are unsustainable, not just for AAA games.

I really do think the cheaply priced, dedicated, fast (load times) console would be a success. Not only with customers, but with developers who want to make full console experiences.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: ShyGuy on February 18, 2014, 06:07:51 PM
Hopefully some of the terminated staff will drift down to Texas were Retro Studios has been posting want ads.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: Ian Sane on February 18, 2014, 06:49:32 PM
These guys made two of the most well regarded games of the last generation and now they're kaputz.  That sucks.  I never ever want to see a company fail for making something GOOD.

What model is sustainable?  Probably shitty free-to-play microtransaction scams.  It ain't like Nintendo's "one gen behind" approach is working anymore.  And how would the market tolerate scaling things back?  To really be cost effective we probably need a Wii/Gamecube/3DS level of hardware but we've had over 8 years of "HD games".  There are gamers now that have never known anything but.  So how do you put that genie back in the bottle?  How do you suddenly cut off games like Bioshock Infinite?  We had those games.  We played them.  Now we have to accept something that comes across as scaled back and out-of-date?  I can't see the market accepting that.  HD is now the expected standard and as long as games like Call of Duty can still make money, as long as ANYBODY can make money, with that formula that's where the bar is set and everything else loses market potential in comparison.

25 years ago it would have been cheaper to make an Atari 2600 style game but it wouldn't be accepted in comparison to the much more advanced NES games that were available.  But that was okay because it was affordable to make an NES game.  Until last gen everybody could afford to push a console's hardware so that became the expected practice.  Games constantly became prettier and bigger and more ambitious.  So that's what the consumer has come to expect.  So what now?  Did we peak and now have to scale back?  That's new territory for the gaming market.  Would it be accepted?  And I don't think it possibly could until literally no one could afford to make such games so that they are effectively banned because is anyone can do it they'll have a huge advantage over everyone else.  Their games would be like NES games competing against Atari.  Everyone knows this so they won't scale back and give the other guy that advantage.

A crash is probably due which I fear would move everything to cellphones and effectively kill the gaming industry as we knew it.  I don't mean the current HD industry but the one from the NES onwards, maybe even from the very beginning.  But assuming we survive and everyone scales back, this last gen would be so bizarre because it would have these incredibly expensive and elaborate classic games that would come across as incredibly ambitious and excessive compared to what would be current titles.  Could that even survive?  Why would anyone buy new games that come across as lesser product to retro ones?

I don't think that could happen.  We can't go back.  It would never fly and even if we scaled back for a time someone would look at these grand retro titles and get the idea to match or top them and then we're right back in it.  This is either the future standard or the whole thing is wiped out for good.  You cannot uninvent the HD era.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: Kytim89 on February 18, 2014, 08:41:32 PM
Despite the financial success of the PS4, Sony's fate is still up in the air. They are still hemorrhaging money right now. I read an article that gave them a 78% chance of going bankrupt. It is really indicative of the health of the industry when a company like Sony is hurting. By the time the PS5 is released Sony will be answering to a mother company. Who ever that is is debatable?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 18, 2014, 08:50:50 PM
This situation reminds me of something relating back to House of Lies last night.

The Term "Hood Rich".
When someone from the hood/ghetto get rich quick and spends uncontrollably to obtain all the ridiculous **** you see in music videos and movies and are unable to leave "the hood" behind. The reason why "Hood Rich" people usually end up back in the hood is that they don't realize how much it cost to maintain all the things they just spent their riches obtaining.

How this relates to the gaming industry, is we all of sudden got Sony (& MS) the tech giant pushing all these new and expensive technologies into the consoles (the loss leader approach), the developers get their taste of dedicated performance and want to continue to push the envelope as their games are looking nicer, and they have so much more freedoms in design and scope. They get all these ambitious ideas that require more and more expensive technology, to which Sony (& MS) are happy to provide (regardless of how much it is actually costing them in the short term). What they don't realize is that by the time they have created what they originally envisioned 3-4 years ago, they have spent millions on staff, millions more on marketing, and are way over what their intended budget was.
Let's say the game does well enough to get sequels, well now the bar has been set, expectations have been raised and you need something that looks as good, plays as well and is even bigger to follow it up.... problem is, that just took you years to accomplish.
The studio next to you is trying to out do you and they are going way over budget to achieve such visual clarity,depth, detail. The next studio over get ignore because their game doesn't look anywhere near that level visually, regardless of if the game is actually any good or better.

The point is, that it's nice to want nice things, but you don't always need them to get the job done.
Games have become so complex and expensive due to the technological push, that they have to make blockbuster numbers to get decent returns on every game made. and as much as a developer loves to work on the most modern setup available, it all comes at a cost that was previously overlooked until it was staring them in the face.
that price at this point is increased dev time, which leads to increased dev cost, which means bigger budgets (for more people) and bigger sales targets to break even.
It's that hidden cost that is killing everyone. More Detail = More Time = More Money
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 18, 2014, 09:05:15 PM
Despite the financial success of the PS4, Sony's fate is still up in the air. They are still hemorrhaging money right now. I read an article that gave them a 78% chance of going bankrupt. It is really indicative of the health of the industry when a company like Sony is hurting. By the time the PS5 is released Sony will be answering to a mother company. Who ever that is is debatable?

no offense, but we need sources.
my main interest is will Sony spin off their movie Division before filing, or will Disney be able to get that Spiderman franchise back in a bankruptcy sale or something.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: Shaymin on February 18, 2014, 09:39:24 PM
Is it just me, or does that statement Irrational put out make Levine sound like a real see you next Tuesday?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: Kytim89 on February 18, 2014, 09:55:26 PM
Despite the financial success of the PS4, Sony's fate is still up in the air. They are still hemorrhaging money right now. I read an article that gave them a 78% chance of going bankrupt. It is really indicative of the health of the industry when a company like Sony is hurting. By the time the PS5 is released Sony will be answering to a mother company. Who ever that is is debatable?

no offense, but we need sources.
my main interest is will Sony spin off their movie Division before filing, or will Disney be able to get that Spiderman franchise back in a bankruptcy sale or something.

I can not post links anymore due to my low karma. My word will have to be taken at face value. Disney will eventually gobble up the film rights to all of their Marvel IPs sooner or later.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 18, 2014, 10:18:31 PM
Despite the financial success of the PS4, Sony's fate is still up in the air. They are still hemorrhaging money right now. I read an article that gave them a 78% chance of going bankrupt. It is really indicative of the health of the industry when a company like Sony is hurting. By the time the PS5 is released Sony will be answering to a mother company. Who ever that is is debatable?

no offense, but we need sources.
my main interest is will Sony spin off their movie Division before filing, or will Disney be able to get that Spiderman franchise back in a bankruptcy sale or something.

I can not post links anymore due to my low karma. My word will have to be taken at face value. Disney will eventually gobble up the film rights to all of their Marvel IPs sooner or later.

HAHAHA are you serious?

low karma = no posting of links? that's hilarious.

and sadly, no, I think Fox will keep X-Men forever just as Sony will hold onto Spider-Man with their last dying breath...
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 18, 2014, 10:32:21 PM
Is it just me, or does that statement Irrational put out make Levine sound like a real see you next Tuesday?

Isn't it though?
They are closing down Irrational, but he and 14/15 others are staying on @ 2k Games to work as a "new" smaller studio.... focused on games for core gamers with a more replayable narrative.

Sounds like he lost his dream due to selling out his studio to a bigger one, but his golden parachute was to hand select a few and start a new. I guess not all was lost... even if he lost his baby (Bioshock).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: broodwars on February 19, 2014, 12:18:38 AM
I can't say I'm sad to see Irrational go. Bioshock Infinite sucked. I just feel sorry for all the artists and programmers who lost their jobs because Ken Levine put out an incredibly poorly-designed and focus grouped-to-hell, generic shooter.

Seriously, I lost all respect for Levine when he took Elizabeth off the cover because he was afraid stereotypical "dude bro" shooter fans wouldn't buy an FPS with a woman on the cover.  That certainly didn't stop Naughty Dog from putting out The Last of Us with Ellie on the cover, which went on to both high sales and general consensus GotY acclaim.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: Phil on February 19, 2014, 02:24:32 AM
Kytim89 is a massive liar. It was nowhere near 75%. It was 78%. God.


I'm just joshing! :)


I think this is the article you were wanting to link to, Kytim.



http://www.technobuffalo.com/2014/01/02/sony-has-78-chance-to-go-bankrupt-in-two-years-says-macroaxis/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: Stogi on February 19, 2014, 02:37:27 AM
I don't normally agree with Yahtzee from Zero Punctuation (although I always find it entertianing), but he brings up the exact point I made about a dedicated game console.

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/videos/view/zero-punctuation/8789-The-Legend-of-Zelda-A-Link-Between-Worlds
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: Luigi Dude on February 26, 2014, 01:22:25 AM
Sony Santa Monica laying off 50 workers and canceled one of the games they were working on.  For anyone that doesn't know, this is the studio behind the main God of War games.

http://www.ign.com/articles/2014/02/25/layoffs-hit-god-of-war-studio-sony-santa-monica (http://www.ign.com/articles/2014/02/25/layoffs-hit-god-of-war-studio-sony-santa-monica)

Look like the PS4's success is truly revitalizing the industry all right. :)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: Oblivion on February 26, 2014, 02:20:41 AM
Look like the PS4's success is truly revitalizing the industry all right. :)


Yeah, because everyone is saying just that. *rolls eyes*
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: BranDonk Kong on February 26, 2014, 09:27:00 AM
They probably canceled a PSVita God of War game. Now it's hard to say that the PS4 is revitalizing anything - but it is selling a **** ton of consoles (322,000 in Japan in 2 days).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: Luigi Dude on February 26, 2014, 03:09:03 PM
They probably canceled a PSVita God of War game. Now it's hard to say that the PS4 is revitalizing anything - but it is selling a **** ton of consoles (322,000 in Japan in 2 days).

Nope, it was a brand new IP that was considered a unique sci-fi game that was being worked on by the Director of God of War 3.  It was even set to be shown at E3 this year meaning something really got messed up.

https://twitter.com/jonathanhawkins/status/438753163777019904 (https://twitter.com/jonathanhawkins/status/438753163777019904)

https://twitter.com/shinobi602/status/438761105767559168 (https://twitter.com/shinobi602/status/438761105767559168)

https://twitter.com/shinobi602/status/438762496166756352 (https://twitter.com/shinobi602/status/438762496166756352)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: MagicCow64 on February 26, 2014, 08:21:34 PM
Everything is just fine:

http://www.gamespot.com/articles/massive-layoffs-at-disney-game-unit-as-700-people-lose-their-jobs/1100-6418153/ (http://www.engadget.com/2014/02/18/irrational-games-closing/)

Edit: Fixed
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: BranDonk Kong on February 26, 2014, 09:12:25 PM
A little late to the party. That's what happens when Publishers have control of the IP though. They'll move on to form a new studio and make good games.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on February 26, 2014, 09:47:29 PM
You guys are more than a week late with that one ;)

Time to update that list again, Irrational Games is shutting down.  This was the studio that made Bioshock and Bioshock Infinite for anyone who didn't know.

http://www.irrationalgames.com/ (http://www.irrationalgames.com/)


Yep, the traditional gaming industry is still healthy and with the PS4/One raising cost even more, it'll only get healthier.  :)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: MagicCow64 on February 27, 2014, 01:22:05 AM
Whoops, my bad. I'll edit the post to replace that link with a link to a story about the next high-profile studio closure/layoff in 2-3 days.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: BranDonk Kong on February 27, 2014, 08:03:25 AM
That's all we ask.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: Phil on March 07, 2014, 09:09:16 PM
Here's sadly a new one. This becoming too much of a common occurrence...


It's the studio that was behind Stubbs the Zombie and the criminally overlooked Wii game Guilty Party.


http://www.hardcoregamer.com/2014/03/06/stubbs-the-zombie-developer-wideload-games-the-latest-victim-of-disney-interactive-layoffs/77321/
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: ShyGuy on December 10, 2016, 09:41:28 PM
Time to update this thread to 2016, Majesco is out of the game. :(

http://www.gamespot.com/articles/majesco-merges-with-biotech-company-leaves-the-vid/1100-6446150/ (http://www.gamespot.com/articles/majesco-merges-with-biotech-company-leaves-the-vid/1100-6446150/)

How comes its never companies I don't care about leaving the industry?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: oohhboy on December 10, 2016, 10:12:24 PM
I can't say I will miss them. Despite the sheer number of games, I haven't played let alone every owned one of their games. I have Psychonauts in my Steam Library, by it is the Mac version and I haven't started it up yet.

I am sure there are other people who actually have fond memories to share. My money is on the Cooking Mama games.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: ShyGuy on December 10, 2016, 10:41:07 PM
They've developed and/or published a number of titles people are fond of:

Cooking Mama series
Costume Quest 2
Psychonauts
A Boy and his Blob
Slender Man
Shadow Warrior

Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: oohhboy on December 10, 2016, 11:14:49 PM
Shadow Warrior??? That's 3D realms/Devlvor Digital unless I missed something

The rest checks out.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2014
Post by: ThePerm on December 11, 2016, 01:10:27 AM
It looks like Devolver Digital has the rights to the Shadow Warrior franchise. In the Shadow Warrior 2 wiki pages, it doesn't mention 3d realms. That doesn't mean too much. I can imagine this has something to do with the 3d realms weirdness that occurred when Duke Nukem Forever got made.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: BlackNMild2k1 on December 11, 2016, 06:25:14 PM
i was just gonna update the date in the title, but I guess a mod beat me to it... hours ago.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: oohhboy on December 12, 2016, 01:17:24 AM
The thread title died 3 years ago trying to murder suicide the thread. This is the twin sibling.

Ubisoft looks like it is in danger of losing it's "Independence".
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: oohhboy on December 12, 2016, 04:33:36 AM
Crytek is dying. Be sure to get front row seats.

http://www.kitguru.net/gaming/matthew-wilson/source-crytek-is-sinking-wages-are-unpaid-talent-leaving-on-a-daily-basis/

VR and 2016 claims another victim.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: ThePerm on December 13, 2016, 05:37:57 AM
I wish Nintendo kept track of some of these. Especially Crytek. Some ex-goldeneye staff work there. RARE-FREERADICALS-CRYTEK UK.

Nintendo should do another British Spy game. I've been watching a lot of James Bond Lately.  Jason Bourne, Jack Bauer, Jack Burton. Joanna Dark was ok. How  about Justin Bieber, James Brolin, Josh Brolin, Jack Black, Jason Biggs, Jimmy Buffet, James Brown, Jim Beam , Jason Bateman, or George Bush?

If I were simply mixing names I'd go with Justin Black. He refuses to wear any other color.

(http://philipcoppens.com/mjb_03.jpg)
I could go on to DEATH with these names.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: oohhboy on December 21, 2016, 04:22:54 AM
Crytek is on life support. I wonder how this will impact Star Citizen which is a **** show as it is.

http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2016-12-20-crytek-breaks-silence-lets-go-of-multiple-studios
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: Phil on December 21, 2016, 08:28:45 PM
I hope Crytek is forced to pay all those employees who haven't been paid in months.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: King of Twitch on December 26, 2016, 04:16:48 PM
Quote
closing down its Budapest (Hungary), Sofia (Bulgaria), Seoul (South Korea), Shanghai (China) and Istanbul (Turkey) studios


Sounds like perfectly obscure places to ignore basic standards of decency and labor laws. Game journalists need to do a better job of holding these people accountable and letting in the sunlight.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: oohhboy on January 27, 2017, 09:44:05 PM
Quote
closing down its Budapest (Hungary), Sofia (Bulgaria), Seoul (South Korea), Shanghai (China) and Istanbul (Turkey) studios


Sounds like perfectly obscure places to ignore basic standards of decency and labour laws. Game journalists need to do a better job of holding these people accountable and letting in the sunlight.
This is a sort of why bother, the US is pretty damn slack about labour rights and depending on state a pretty low floor especially with right to work states(What a joke of a name)

EA only changed their labour policies after the internet outrage from EA mother stating the horrible conditions. So I expect most other companies to be the same, just with nicer offices.

They do get to pay them a lot less as the cost of living compared to the US is pretty low so they can treat them better compared to their US counter parts with less pay.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: pokepal148 on February 07, 2017, 04:51:04 PM
the crowdfunding bubble has begun to burst. (http://www.polygon.com/2017/2/6/14311836/crowdfunding-video-games-down-in-2016-kickstarter-fig-gambitious)

No surprise there.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: NWR_insanolord on February 07, 2017, 04:54:18 PM
I haven't backed a game Kickstarter in over two years and there are still several ones I've backed that have yet to deliver a finished product. I'm guessing that drop is because I'm not alone in that.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: Soren on February 07, 2017, 06:16:35 PM
The only video game Kickstarter I backed was all the way in early 2015. I got my platform select survey yesterday. Video Games are hard to make.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: Evan_B on February 07, 2017, 07:04:05 PM
I happily own the only Kickstarter game I ever donated towards. It's not the best game ever, but it does what it set out to do!

I will likely never donate to a game again.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: Khushrenada on February 07, 2017, 07:20:21 PM
The closest I ever came to donating to a game was Yooka-Laylee. I really do like and miss that old 64 large world exploration with collectables style of platforming. However, they reached their goal fast so I didn't see the need. Glad I'm didn't in the end with the Wii U version getting cancelled and moved to the Switch. Not sure why they couldn't release on both but considering I'm not getting a Switch for awhile and have no intention of buying an XBOX or PS, I'd have been pretty upset if I had contributed. Moreover, with a lot of Kickstarter not living up to expectations, it just does not seem wise to contribute.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: Phil on February 07, 2017, 07:32:24 PM
I have yet to contribute money to a Kickstarter. With Mighty No. 9 and the disaster that Inaflunke (so mature of an insult from me! :P) associated with it, I'm sure he helped turn lots of prospective backers off. Plus, there are so many games from years ago that have been backed that are still not out. That's understandable, though, as the development gets extended with stretch goals met (and game dev is hard as it is!).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: oohhboy on February 08, 2017, 07:33:59 AM
I have kickstarted 3 games. Planetary Annihilation, Wasteland and Jupiter Raising.

Planetary Annihilation was worth the money and I put a good number of hours into it and it fill the "Grand Macro strategy hole". Unfortunately zooming out so far meant you didn't really get to see all the explosions and manoeuvres which sort of place the graphics to waste. There are a replays that are very accurate and watch some of the top players is quite interesting as they understand that player attention time is a more important resource that the ones found in the game.

Wasteland 2 was a disappointment. One of the things that really irritated me was how absurdly diverse the skills are resulting in skills that are related and should be one skill especially most of those skills are meant to unlock chests and the like not to do anything productive.

The combat is not good on the account of the maps. They are simultaneously too large and lack cover considering the number of AP required means way more often than not you can't get to cover. At which point you might as well play it old school where you just stand out in the open trading shots. Well at least it came out and I got the enhanced edition for free.

Jupiter Raising hasn't come out yet until the end of the year. It has some great developers behind it with one legendary dude who made DOOMRL. It is going to be the same sort of game as DOOMRL but with much better graphics.

You really just got to do your due diligence.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: Shaymin on February 08, 2017, 10:02:54 AM
I've backed two games - one is a two-man (essentially) job that has been delayed to ensure the game runs on the platform I chose for it (Vita), the other is in perpetual PC beta (Hover: Revolt of Gamers). So I'm out $10. No big deal.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: pokepal148 on February 08, 2017, 03:34:37 PM
There are some hilarious failed kickstarters. My favorite is Fleetcomm. Apparently it takes four years to come up with the tutorial stages for a f-ing Shoot 'Em Up. (http://gamesnosh.com/fleetcomm-kickstarter-still-awful/)

lol. (https://storify.com/strictmachine/from-zero-to-negative-the-roguestar-story)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: Phil on February 08, 2017, 03:39:45 PM
I want to crowdfund one of my games and have it at, like, $10,000 for the goal. I want to leave St. Louis for a week for a change and get a nice, kick-ass vacat-- Develop a nice kick-ass sequel to Super Push Adventure.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: ThePerm on February 08, 2017, 05:20:36 PM
That is the thing about kickstarters. The kickstarter runner must pay themselves. Time is an important resource. If they don't pay for their time then likely they won't get the project done. I don't think I would start a kickstarter unless I was at least 75% done with a project.

With Yooka Laylee I'm in a bind because I basically have to buy a new game system to get the game, or gift it to someone.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: Stratos on February 12, 2017, 12:48:11 PM
You could gift me the Switch version good buddy :D


I could probably give you some Steam games to compensate as I have some extra copies floating around from Humble Bundles. Think I got some Wii U/3DS ones as well.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: oohhboy on February 17, 2017, 03:00:46 AM
Most people have enough spare keys that we should have a private invite only exchange but you know bad faith actors would make a mess of things as without an escrow who can verify the keys it is nothing but a blind honour system. But all the same if there are keys someone wants to exchange I would be open to it.

I want to crowdfund one of my games and have it at, like, $10,000 for the goal. I want to leave St. Louis for a week for a change and get a nice, kick-ass vacat-- Develop a nice kick-ass sequel to Super Push Adventure.
$10000 feels a bit on the low side, but I have no idea what the game is and you are likely afraid that the game wouldn't get funded at all which is understandable. Not being able to cover your expenses though is even worse as you have to take time off to bring in other income etc or release early which would piss everyone off without a doubt.

I would aim higher than my expected expenses and if it can't get funded for even a small bump for safety then there wasn't a market anyway. (Unless you already taken account of this).

However there is a way you can have your cake and eat it too via stretch goals. If you are sure that you are going to get funded for the initial amount add in features that don't take too much off course to bring in more money which would help ensure success assuming the game doesn't suck.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: Phil on February 17, 2017, 10:12:41 PM
Oh, I was 100% joking about doing crowdfunding. I would not need it for the scope of my games. :)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: oohhboy on February 18, 2017, 12:08:06 AM
The up front income couldn't hurt as an extra layer of security if you can get it especially if you know that you can complete the project with the resources at hand.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: ThePerm on February 21, 2017, 05:08:36 PM
You could gift me the Switch version good buddy :D


I could probably give you some Steam games to compensate as I have some extra copies floating around from Humble Bundles. Think I got some Wii U/3DS ones as well.

I'd take that deal if my pc was better. Yooka Laylee comes out after my birthday. Either I'm going to have a ps4 and a switch, or just a ps4. It depends on how my tax return turns out and the availability of the Switch.

you would certainly be one of my preferred choices.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: Stratos on February 21, 2017, 05:49:42 PM
You could gift me the Switch version good buddy :D


I could probably give you some Steam games to compensate as I have some extra copies floating around from Humble Bundles. Think I got some Wii U/3DS ones as well.

I'd take that deal if my pc was better. Yooka Laylee comes out after my birthday. Either I'm going to have a ps4 and a switch, or just a ps4. It depends on how my tax return turns out and the availability of the Switch.

you would certainly be one of my preferred choices.


I have both PC and WiiU/3DS codes from humble bundles, if a PC code does not interest you.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: ThePerm on February 23, 2017, 01:42:42 AM
Funny thing is I got the same humble bundle. I don't have 3ds. I tried to give the codes away to my sister in law and she never did anything. Then I gave them to Shyguy. I'm not sure if they worked for him. So, you're actually giving away the same thing I am.

I think I'm getting a ps4 for my birthday. So, I can put it on there. But you know Nintendo loyalty and all. I'd rather trade it to someone who puts it on the right home for it. If I get a decent tax return I might just buy a Switch too. So, i woulds ay it is up in the air till the end of March.

On ps4, I'm more likely to only buy ps4 exclusives than multiplatform titles. On switch I'd probably get the multi-platform versions because "im fucking tired of 3rd party Nintendo shunning"
I don't want another third party to have some annoying contrived sales data. Especially De Facto Rare.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: ThePerm on March 08, 2017, 02:55:01 PM
Crytek sold one of its studios to Sega. This could be good news for both companies.

http://www.polygon.com/2017/3/7/14844758/crytek-black-sea-studio-now-creative-assembly-sofia-total-war-sega
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: nickmitch on March 24, 2017, 11:50:51 PM
GameStop closing 150 stores. (http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/news/2017/03/24/gamestop-video-game-stores/99573598/)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: oohhboy on March 25, 2017, 12:20:16 AM
If they operated here in NZ like they do over that they deserve to die.

"Cheaper" second hand games that is 2 dollars cheaper than new.

Perpetual sales that make their shop look like a garbage dump and aren't actual sales or discounts.

Terrible new prices that even Nintendo online prices clown on.

More expensive 2nd hand games even accounting for shipping from just about anywhere else.

Horrible selection on everything with Nintendo being 2nd only to the 2nd hand pile.

Perpetual stocks of items that are a decade old still being sold for full price i.e Blizzard Battle Chest.

I haven't shopped there in a decade or more and I am happy to continue this trend. The last thing I ever brought from them was Metroid Prime Hunters where if you trade 2 games you could get it for ~$15, so I went to another store, got some $1 games and brought it. Turned out the game wasn't very good and they drove the good game store I went to out of business.

If they want to evolve they are going to have to stop piling up entire walls with one game whenever something like Halo or whatever AAA nothing burger shows up and shift that space into merchandising. They can sell loot crates. Clean up their stores of all the tack so you don't feel shame going inside. Offer codes or online games to people who won't/don't have credit cards.

It's won't get me through the door but damn it would get the kids in. But nah, they aren't going to change, good riddance.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: ThePerm on March 25, 2017, 12:42:20 AM
Theres all sorts of ways Gamestop could improve its business model. I doubt they would do them. Gamestops are small. They should be twice as big and still have classic games.

It would be kinda cool if they had some arcade cabinets.

Rarely ever do i spend more than 6 minutes in a GameStop. I usually go in there, see nothing of interest and walk right out because there is nothing to keep me there.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: Shaymin on March 25, 2017, 08:31:42 AM
Quote from: oohhboy
If they want to evolve they are going to have to stop piling up entire walls with one game whenever something like Halo or whatever AAA nothing burger shows up and shift that space into merchandising. They can sell loot crates. Clean up their stores of all the tack so you don't feel shame going inside. Offer codes or online games to people who won't/don't have credit cards.

My local GameStop (ok, EB Games, same thing) is in a mall so they have a U shape. If you're at the bend of the U (the back of the store) the entire right wall is nothing but merch. Sadly, most of it is those bloody Funko abominations.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: King of Twitch on March 25, 2017, 01:55:52 PM
If they want to evolve they are going to have to stop piling up entire walls with one game whenever something like Halo or whatever AAA nothing burger shows up and shift that space into merchandising.

Sounds like Blockbuster
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: Stratos on March 25, 2017, 02:06:24 PM
Wow! What a different: Blockbuster Video!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: Phil on March 25, 2017, 04:40:03 PM
Perhaps takeovers and underhanded ways to buy out the competition is finally catching up karma-wise to GameStop!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: ThePerm on March 25, 2017, 07:50:23 PM
I was reading Sears and K-mart might go out of business. The last time I was at K-mart my friend and I joked how creepy it was on the inside, and that there might be a possibility that we might get stabbed and mugged. It's sad when you see a store so poorly ran that your thoughts are "boy oh boy could I run this place better than it's ran"
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: oohhboy on March 26, 2017, 03:45:12 AM
I am not sure if our K-Mart(NZ) is the same thing as before or something else wearing it's skin, but I don't like going into it as the lights are hard white like bleached bones and having a greeter at the door creeps me out a little.

If I want American brands though I do remember it being pretty good for that.

It seems to be doing ok though, but they don't seem to run any ads so I guess they are going for the lean approach.

Might have a gander tomorrow as I will be out that way.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: nickmitch on March 27, 2017, 09:53:36 AM
Theres all sorts of ways Gamestop could improve its business model. I doubt they would do them. Gamestops are small. They should be twice as big and still have classic games.

It would be kinda cool if they had some arcade cabinets.

Rarely ever do i spend more than 6 minutes in a GameStop. I usually go in there, see nothing of interest and walk right out because there is nothing to keep me there.

I do the same thing in my local GameStop.  I always feel kinda awkward, so I've been trying to avoid going in there unless there's something I want.

I remember seeing a GameCube with a GameBoy Player in the glass on display.  I eventually asked about it, and got an "I dunno" reply from the person there.  I came back a week or two later and was told those actually belong to the employees and are just on display.  I was a bit upset because I knew they didn't have them online, so the display was just false advertising.  They've since put in different consoles.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: oohhboy on August 03, 2017, 12:32:00 AM
Damn, Zynga is still alive after being in the red for years. I laugh though - $5.1 million (GAAP) in profits (on $209 million in revenues). 2.4% profit margin making mobile skinner boxes. I don't know what their expenses are for making a bunch of simple games but that is a ridiculously small margin.

Also please die already Zynga (http://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/302962/After_a_lengthy_losing_streak_Zynga_is_profitable_again.php?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+GamasutraNews+%28Gamasutra+News%29).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: broodwars on October 17, 2017, 03:14:52 PM
EA's killed another one: Visceral Games (the makers of the Dead Space series) is shutting down.

https://www.ea.com/news/an-update-on-the-visceral-star-wars-project

This press release just screams "They were making a Star Wars game we couldn't ruin with loot boxes, so we got rid of them & are starting over."

**** this industry. I liked Visceral.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: Kytim89 on March 04, 2018, 12:14:13 AM
EA's killed another one: Visceral Games (the makers of the Dead Space series) is shutting down.

https://www.ea.com/news/an-update-on-the-visceral-star-wars-project (https://www.ea.com/news/an-update-on-the-visceral-star-wars-project)

This press release just screams "They were making a Star Wars game we couldn't ruin with loot boxes, so we got rid of them & are starting over."

**** this industry. I liked Visceral.


Shameful that EA killed Visceral Games, but perhaps Microsoft can buyout EAand do the same to them.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2017
Post by: Khushrenada on March 04, 2018, 03:12:24 AM
Whoa! Kytim89!

How you doing? Long time no see!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: BeautifulShy on March 22, 2018, 06:15:09 PM
Oh wow Kytim is back.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: ShyGuy on March 23, 2018, 12:01:32 AM
Should Toys R Us be on this list?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: ThePerm on March 23, 2018, 01:35:33 AM
Should Toys R Us be on this list?

Yes. My older brother bought Bart Vs. The Space Mutants at Toys R Us.

That article about crowdfunding says the same number of projects got funded in 2016 as 2015. Though, they apparently were not as big budget. I imagine indy budgets are going to go waaaaay down.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: Khushrenada on March 23, 2018, 01:55:47 AM
Should Toys R Us be on this list?

Nah, we already got a thread about it here: http://www.nintendoworldreport.com/forums/index.php?topic=53498.0
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: broodwars on May 14, 2018, 03:15:31 PM
Cliffy B's Boss Key Productions, makers of absolutely nothing anyone cares about, has closed.

https://www.polygon.com/2018/5/14/17353126/cliff-bleszinski-leaving-boss-key-studios (https://www.polygon.com/2018/5/14/17353126/cliff-bleszinski-leaving-boss-key-studios)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: Evan_B on May 14, 2018, 06:32:30 PM
Whooo!
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: King of Twitch on June 19, 2018, 02:38:10 PM
They should call it FunkoStop with all %#)$ bobbleheads they sell now.

Not even a pile of gaming garbage could turn the ship around, because GameStop is in talks with buyout firms.
 (https://www.reuters.com/article/us-gamestop-m-a/gamestop-says-in-talks-for-possible-transaction-idUSKBN1JF1M4)
Quote
The retailer’s stock has slid more than 32 percent over the last 12 months, bringing its market capitalization to $1.42 billion, down from about $9.4 billion in 2007.

Ouchy. It was inevitable and highly entertaining to watch. Some of us thought it would’ve happened long ago with downloadable games and DLC and horse armor creeping in. Sit right back and you’ll hear a decade-long tale, courtesy mostly of posters who have long since logged off and disappeared forever, but a few that are still around. Perhaps more than a few still bitter about a decade’s worth of horrible store policies, employees that rubbed them the wrong way (sometimes through incompetence, sometimes idiotic corporate strategizing, or just plain immaturity), worthless trade-ins, predatory salesmanship. If you wanted to start a gaming store chain, you couldn’t create something this bad if you tried; the story of Gamestop is a series of mismanagement that piggybacks on its own mistakes and rides them through the mud like a rodeo clown.
 
GameStop closing 150 stores. (http://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/news/2017/03/24/gamestop-video-game-stores/99573598/)

That was only a year ago.
 
Perhaps takeovers and underhanded ways to buy out the competition is finally catching up karma-wise to GameStop!

Ask and you shall receive! What a long strange trip it's been. Here, one of the great opening lines to a longstanding thread "So nobody likes GameStop? (http://www.nintendoworldreport.com/forums/index.php?topic=27671.0)" which references waay back to the Gamecube era, started March 21, 2009, the day after the opening of spring that year, but far from the beginning of the spring of the forum's discontent:
 
Quote
I was reading some of the negative comments about GameStop in the NWR 2006 thread...


 
One of the great things about the forums is learning about all the flyover, unwashed states from sea to shining sea, the yearning overweight masses huddled uncomfortably close together in a grimy sea of humanity:
 
The GameStops here in Anchorage are teh_evil, claiming to hold items for you and then, once you get there, deny memory of holding anything for you (like an hour ago--screw you guys) and hey--they're all out of (whatever they were supposed to be holding). It has happened to me many times.
 
More irritating are the times where they try to sell you a used game in a generic DVD case for full price, or when they give you crap for credit on fairly new games. I don't like the type of employee who thinks he's better than you, which I've encountered many times.
 
What turned me away from GameStop for good was the time I had to go in and renew my GameInformer subscription. I stood in like for like fifteen minutes behind some idiot fat guy who kept asking about release dates and whether they had this game or that.
 
I noticed that the whole store was crawling with people who looked homeless or, at the very least, hadn't showered in weeks. When I finally got up to the counter and asked to renew my GI subscription, they asked if I wanted to reserve any games. The person behind me belched loudly and chuckled with his idiot friend.
 
I renewed my subscription and haven't been back since.

 
We also got to see how our lovely forumers interact with people who are paid to do the same thing we do on the forums, only with the added wrinkle of the slow realization that not every employee in the ENTIRE country is as bad as the ones in my neighborhood:
 
GameStop is overpriced. Gamestop employees are rude and stupid. Gamestop only stays afloat because of a lack of competition. I've been to several different stores in several different states and the story is always the same.

 
One thing that always bothers me about Gamestop hate is that they pick on the employees, labeling them all as incompetent fanboys simply because of a couple of them in ONE store.
 
Many of my friends are Gamestop employees. S_B's girlfriend is a Gamestop manager. And I've met and talked with many wonderful Gamestop employees, so to me whenever someone bashes the employees I get upset.
 
Yes, like ANY store in the world, there are some really bad employees, ones that will test your patience. But simply because you encountered one bad employee you shouldn't convince yourself that all of them are bad. Many are just like you and me; hard working people trying to make a living. And they also get bullcrap from the store and its clients.
 
Hell, I've even encountered pregnant employees, handling multiple reservations when they should be resting! So because of that I've gained empathy towards employees because they are humans.
 
If you want to hate the store, hate on its policies, ideas and deals, but leave the employees out of it because they have it just as bad, if not worse, as we.
 
Regarding Gamestop hate, I think gamers hate it for the same reason many hate Wal-Mart: Its one of the biggest game stores in the US right and its contemporary. Since they have kind of a monopoly on the selling and trading of used games they get away with some dubious things, and that's why so many gamers say nothing but horror stories about them.
 
Now, if there were more Gamestop like stores and there was real competition then maybe the hate would ease up. Maybe.
 
Finally, it seems the hate comes from problems with ONE store. I've been to multiple Gamestops, and the service DOES vary. There are stores which are organized and the employees are nice and friendly. Then there are stores that are a mess and its employees are rude.
 
So it seems that if they have experiences with one store they label them all like that.

The thread even contained an UNSOLVED MYSTERY:


Wait, GP shops at the Gamestop where Dirk shops? How do they both know the same Amanda clerk?
 
Furthermore, GP is in Washington. Dirk is in New Hampshire. Pap is in Puerto Rico. Smash Bros is in Alaska. Athena is in King of Fighters. HOW DO YOU ALL SHOP FACE TO FACE AT THE SAME GAMESTOP?

 
I’ll give em this: they did try responding to market changes. They've given good preorder bonuses over the years. I’ve bought a few gaming knickknacks from them. Now I go in there and I want to throw up. In any case, this change happened right around 9 years ago. I think that's right around the time Nintendo also announced they'd start selling games in non-game stores. Which was exciting at first, but then it just meant that you could buy those retarded beach minigames for Wii at the grocery store.

 
Gamestop now offering over priced and somewhat ugly gaming clothing
« on: February 03, 2009, 03:37:12 PM » (http://www.nintendoworldreport.com/forums/index.php?topic=27327.msg485389#msg485389)


STOP GIVING GAMESTOP YOUR MONEY! (GameStop Vs Amazon) (http://www.nintendoworldreport.com/forums/index.php?topic=33684.msg659539#msg659539)
[size=0px]« on: March 08, 2011, 05:35:39 PM »[/size]

 
Quote
GameStop humbly offers me $16.00 for Epic Mickey..... Original Value? $49.99 + $2.50 State Tax= $52.49


Kingdom hearts Re:coded.... Much more recent, hasn't really aged much, and including Tax and all that stuff, I originally  payed $36.74
 
Now what does Lovely GameStop want to give me for this fairly pricey DS game?
 
12.00.....
 

 
GameStop to Challenge Steam, OnLive and Maybe One Day Apple
 (http://www.nintendoworldreport.com/forums/index.php?topic=33969.msg664568#msg664568)« on: April 02, 2011, 10:14:57 AM »


Quote
Well, it looks like GameStop's plans following its acquisition of Impulse and Spawn Labs may be even grander than we had suspected. At an investor conference today, GameStop said flat out that it is "becoming a technology company," and that it does indeed plan to introduce a cloud-based gaming service similar to OnLive as a result of the Spawn Labs acquisition, while Impulse will be used to "compete fiercely" with Steam.
[size=78%] [/size]
But that's just the start of things. According to the Dallas Morning News, GameStop also plans to expand the gaming service to a variety of mobile devices, and it's apparently even entertaining the idea of a GameStop-branded tablet, saying that "if we feel like we could do a better job of making a tablet, we'll do that." Of course, some of that is still quite a ways off, but GameStop will be taking its first steps fairly soon -- it's already showed off a demo of how the service will be integrated into its website (see above, complete with a "try it now" option), and it plans to begin a public beta sometime this year before rolling out the full service early next year.


I don't remember this in the slightest, or what came from this, and it seems as if, once the history of our era is written, no one else will either.

Farewell Gamestop, I hope your fine organization gets a fantastic trade-in value.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: ShyGuy on June 20, 2018, 09:48:10 AM
Soon we will only have Walmart, Best Buy, and Target.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: King of Twitch on June 20, 2018, 05:20:42 PM
I was going to say that BB is on its way out, but it appears that ***** has been good for business.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: Ian Sane on June 20, 2018, 05:28:43 PM
There are a handful of mom n pop game stores that I've become familiar with in the lower mainland of BC and northwest Washington state.  They sell new games and old games and have trade-ins so on the surface this seems like the same Gamestop business model.  Though while Gamestop has more and more of their store full of toys and knick-knacks and less games, the independent stores I visit have lots and lots of used games from multiple generations.  Retro gaming is hip but Gamestop has nothing retro in their store at all.  Their used games are almost all from the current generation and they've been clearing out their previous gen stock.  So the only games they carry are the ones that are all available as digital purchases.  Gamestop is a physical store selling physical copies of what are essentially digital games.  They're the videogame equivalent of stores selling CDs in the post-iTunes era.  Those stores went under but the used record stores remain.  The retro gaming stores are the used record stores while Gamestop is HMV.  And the ironic thing is that with their focus on trade-ins and used games they could EASILY have transitioned to a retro gaming chain once the writing was on the wall for physical games.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: broodwars on June 20, 2018, 05:58:25 PM
I saw on Twitter that GameStop had Shadow of War on sale for $20, and it's supposedly decent now that they patched out all the pay-to-win B.S. so I decided to go buy a copy. This is pretty much a transcript of what happened next. Just FYI, I had allowed my PuR card to expire since I don't really buy anything at GS anymore, opting instead for Amazon:
*She rings up the game*

"Do you want to preorder anything coming up?"

"No, there's nothing I really want the rest of the year."

"There's Red Dead Redemption 2 coming out, Assassin's Creed Odyssey, etc."


"I'm good, thanks."

"I see your membership expired back in May. Do you want to renew it?"

"No".

"It's only $15 & comes w/ a coupon."

"I'm good."

"You saved $700 last year with it."

"I'm good!"

"You would have saved $60 last month!"

"I'm fine, thanks"

*She finally rings up the sale, looking pissed*

This routine is why I don't shop at GameStop anymore, and likely why their stock is in the toilet and they're on the verge of Bankruptcy. Look at how many times I got hassled in that conversation when I came in to buy one thing and made that very much clear.
Meanwhile, I see a thing I want on Amazon, I click a few buttons, and I'm done. And probably for cheaper, too.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: segagamersteph on June 20, 2018, 08:33:43 PM
I can beat that. When I went in to buy FF 15 I asked do you have Final Fantasy 15. The guy frowns and says we don't have any used copies in just yet. We can put your name on the list. I said what about new I'd rather buy it new. He said oh well if you want to come back on Monday we should have some more used copies are you sure you don't want to wait.

I asked do you have any NEW copies? I want new not used. He said I am not sure if we have any new copies but we'll have some used ones in a day or two. I asked the guy putting games on the shelf. do YOU know if they have any copies of FF15. I kept asking because there weren't any on the wall. But there were plenty of display boxes that said ask an associate.
He walked over to the wall and pulled on from behind the ask an associate box and said here it's the last one. We can sell you this but if you want the used copy we can sign you up. I was annoyed I said listen I just want to buy the NEW copy I am not interested in used. I don't buy used games. I want this game new.


The only reason I was even in there was because I did a story on them for the Switch launch for our newspaper and I had some in store credit for doing the story. I wanted that game. They hassled me for using the credit and asked if I wanted to pick up a used game to go with my purchase. I was so pissed they kept pushing the used game I grabbed a $20 new copy of Dungeons 2 and said I'll take this too.

That was the last time I went into Game stop and that was probably a good 2 years or more from my last visit that also didn't go well.


On that same story. The reason they gave me store credit wasn't for doing the story for the newspaper, that would be unethical. It was because I tried to snap a photo of the long line forming of people there to pre order the new Nintendo console. I had just done a story on the NES Classic for our Holiday Buying Guide (boy I felt like a jerk for telling people to buy one of those that Christmas)
 Anyways there was one jerk in line who got belligerent and threatened me for taking his picture without his permission. I politely said it's okay sir this is going into the newspaper. He got in my face and said You do not have my permission to take my photo. I said sir, this is a public place, you are on a large crowd, this is news, my boss sent me here to take a picture and i have a constitutional right to take this picture. If you don't want to be in the photo you can gladly step aside and these people will save your spot in line He grabbed my camera and said if you take a picture I break your camera. Three customers in line rushed between me and him and said back of this person is just doing their job.

He grabbed my camera and said Im going to break your camera if you don't get out of here. I said go ahead you're going to be buying me a new camera. At this point the store manager told him if he didn't want to be in the photo he could step aside or you can go home. The man turned towards the wall and I snapped the photo of the long line, cropped his ass out of my photo anyways and the manager offered me store credit to apologize for the incident.

The store was glad to get the positive press but they knew if I had gone back with a story of gamestop customer assaults journalist while standing in line for new video game it would have been a **** storm so I came out ahead and all they asked is that I crop the name out and say a local video game store in my story.  That is what I ended up doing.
That wasn't even the worst thing that ever happened but it was just another day on the job. I, won't shed any tears for GameStop going out of business.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: King of Twitch on June 20, 2018, 09:22:30 PM
LOL. Are you saying you bought a new game from Gamestop out of spite?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: segagamersteph on June 21, 2018, 10:57:25 AM
I had store credit, I picked a NEW game over a used copy because they were pushing the used game. Read up on their policies they try to force people into used games because of profit margins its their circle of life program.
The game was free for me. The value was $20. I didn't tell the story right. I used the rest of the credit later on my Switch pre-order which I only got from them because I was there and they let me make payments. I was really just planning on swooping in to snap a picture and it escalated.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: ThePerm on June 22, 2018, 01:13:29 AM
You know what I wonder. If Gamestop just liquidated all of its stuff to a competitor that would be simpler than a closeout sale. Wal-mart used to have this sister company called Buds that were in older model Wal-marts that sold discount stuff. It could be a good time to start that up again.

Wal-mart inexplicably closed a bunch of Sam's clubs. They could just turn them into big online warehouses.

edit: that's just what they did.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: segagamersteph on June 24, 2018, 11:39:28 PM
I'd rather they bury their inventory in the dessert in New Mexico somewhere so we can dig it up 30 years later.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: ThePerm on July 03, 2018, 09:03:31 PM
Still looking for ET
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: RABicle on August 07, 2018, 05:36:39 AM
Microsoft should quit consoles and focus on Xbox Live Game Pass as a platform independent Netflix of games (https://pietriots.com/2018/08/03/xbox-adrift-can-microsoft-save-the-xbox-one-should-they/) and other unqualified opinions.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: broodwars on September 21, 2018, 03:51:53 PM
Developing story: Telltale has laid off 225 of its 250 employees. The remaining employees will finish Walking Dead Season 4, and then the studio will close.

I was a big Telltale fan since the original Sam & Max Season 1, but it's hard to argue that Telltale hasn't spent the last 6 years since Walking Dead Season 1 spinning their wheels & pissing away all their goodwill. I did love Wolf Among Us, Tales from the Borderlands, and Batman S1, though.

https://www.theverge.com/platform/amp/2018/9/21/17888162/telltale-games-layoffs-the-walking-dead?__twitter_impression=true (https://www.theverge.com/platform/amp/2018/9/21/17888162/telltale-games-layoffs-the-walking-dead?__twitter_impression=true)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: lolmonade on September 21, 2018, 03:56:35 PM
That one hits me hard, as I loved both The Walking Dead S1 and The Wolf Among Us.  I was really hopeful they'd get to making The Wolf Among Us S2 and Stranger things, but I wonder if they tried to take up too many projects, and then dontnod effectively eats their lunch with Life is Strange with how good that series is both with the choices you can make and the polish those games comparatively had. 
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: pokepal148 on September 21, 2018, 03:59:54 PM
Broodwars beat me to it. It's a really surprising bit of news in that I've been under the impression that telltale has been churning out the same game 11 times a year. You'd think that the operating costs there would be pretty small.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: Stratos on September 21, 2018, 07:07:58 PM
When churning out the same games you tend to shrink your market share with each iteration unless you got some  hook, and the IP themes alone stopped being a good enough hook.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: ShyGuy on September 21, 2018, 07:18:25 PM
Going to miss Wolf Among US season 2. I imagine all the voice acting and animations made their style of game cost more than other games of a similar scope.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: ejamer on September 21, 2018, 09:07:53 PM
Mixed feeling about this.

I have a long-standing appreciation of point-and-click adventures, and TellTale really is responsible for some great titles and a general revival of that genre over the past decade plus. Unfortunately, their games suffered from some pretty consistent problems on the technical side and some writing/design choices that seemed to stagnate. (Or maybe that's just my impression...)

They will definitely be missed, but will leave behind a solid (if somewhat mixed) legacy.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: broodwars on September 21, 2018, 09:11:54 PM
There's a rumor going around now online that Telltale will not be finishing Walking Dead Season 4, but instead the Minecraft Story Mode deal they already had with Netflix

If that's actually true, then they need to offer refunds for Walking Dead S4 Season Pass owners, somehow. I wonder if someone besides THQ Nordic will buy them out before the end.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: Shaymin on September 21, 2018, 10:15:00 PM
THQ will buy it in 2023 for like, ten bucks.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: MagicCow64 on September 22, 2018, 12:33:12 AM
It's hard for me to feel too bad about this. Their actual adventure games ranged from okay (Back to the Future, Sam and Max Season 1, some of Monkey Island) to great (Sam and Max Seasons 2 and (especially) 3, some of Monkey Island), but they never should have gone further in the story game direction than Jurassic Park. (I actually think Jurassic Park was their most fun narrative game because of the constant pressure, "hit point" system, and actual obstacles.)

I enjoyed the first Walking Dead season, and have since played a number of other Telltale titles, but once you realize that the actual hook of these games, narrative choice, is total bullshit, it's really hard to form much of an attachment to them. The first Walking Dead season at least still had a few perfunctory "puzzles", but the studio quickly abandoned any aspect of real interactivity. Thus they had no actual design hooks or gameplay exptertise anymore, and it's not at all hard to copy this game-type or to incorporate a "story design" that depends on the novelty of picking A/B/C/D decisions occasionally that have no major effect on anything. Until Dawn, for instance, did a much better job of fabricating a dynamic narrative, and tons of games now have meaningless dialogue response options on top of traditional gameplay.

In general, though, as might be obvious, I'm pretty disdainful of this "I made my character act rudely sometimes! This is my story!" thing that shouldn't pass as game design and shouldn't be a substitute for what a true dynamic narrative would entail. 
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: oohhboy on September 22, 2018, 01:14:18 AM
I had no idea they were in that much trouble let alone had 250 employees. That is a lot of people cranking out such relatively small games. All those IP gotta be expensive.

They promised to port Sam And Max season 1 to MacOS which never happened. BTTF was good. Walking Dead S1 killed it for me. If you're going to give me a choice, give me a choice.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: nickmitch on September 22, 2018, 09:01:26 AM
I wonder what will happen to the rights to the games. Will someone scoop them up, or will they revert to the IP holders?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: pokepal148 on October 04, 2018, 04:16:51 PM
Telltale apparently got rid of the skeleton crew.

link (https://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/327978/Report_Telltale_Games_lays_off_remaining_skeleton_crew.php)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: Khushrenada on October 04, 2018, 08:31:07 PM
Telltale apparently got rid of the skeleton crew.

And Halloween was just a few weeks away. That's rough. Guess they went with trick instead of treat. Oh well. I don't think it's any skin off the skeleton's back.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: Shaymin on October 04, 2018, 10:01:54 PM
Does anyone know where to find retractable cacti? Asking for a friend.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: oohhboy on October 05, 2018, 11:25:00 AM
Telltale apparently got rid of the skeleton crew.

link (https://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/327978/Report_Telltale_Games_lays_off_remaining_skeleton_crew.php)

F
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: Stratos on October 05, 2018, 11:33:08 AM
They may be getting laid off as they finish their parts of the last projects.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: pokepal148 on February 17, 2019, 03:48:01 AM
Razer is closing down their online store thingy,

link (https://www.engadget.com/2019/02/16/razer-closes-game-store/)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: oohhboy on February 17, 2019, 07:06:26 AM
Razer needs to go away. They straight up make junk.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: Shaymin on February 17, 2019, 08:33:45 AM
Razer also made a cryptocurrency, so they deserved to die and I hope they burn in hell.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: ShyGuy on February 19, 2019, 09:55:17 PM
Did Razer make good stuff like 10 years ago or am I imagining things?
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: pokepal148 on June 13, 2020, 12:13:24 AM
Looks like at&t is looking to sell WB's gaming devision. (https://www.cnet.com/news/at-t-looking-to-sell-warner-bros-gaming-unit-for-4b-report-says/)

Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: nickmitch on June 13, 2020, 12:40:00 AM
Looks like at&t is looking to sell WB's gaming devision. (https://www.cnet.com/news/at-t-looking-to-sell-warner-bros-gaming-unit-for-4b-report-says/)

I'm sorry, but I really need to see something that proves WB Interactive is worth four billion united states dollars.  They put out like 6 games in 2019 and 3 of them were ports??  Are they saying the rights to publishing games based on WB properties is worth $4B??
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-2018
Post by: ShyGuy on June 13, 2020, 02:02:40 AM
AT&T is really cutting the fat because they are swimming in debt. I hope DC Comics survives.

WB Games only makes licensed games and Mortal Kombat.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: Shaymin on June 13, 2020, 08:11:34 AM
Mortal Kombat is probably the biggest multiplatform fighting game IP in the business, and the Batman games did REALLY well for WB as well (with another seemingly on the way). Add in the possibility of a bidding war - I'm sure Activision would like another 5-6 studios to pump out CODs - and $4bn may be realistic.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: broodwars on June 13, 2020, 08:51:44 AM
Unfortunately, from the available bidders probably the best outcome here is 2K buying the WB Games Division. They'll likely force hundred of dollars of predatory microtransactions into whatever those teams make (though Gearbox seems to exist without them), but they'll otherwise leave them alone.

The 3 big prizes in all this are clearly Rocksteady; Monolith; and NeverRealm. Sony & Microsoft both have teams that do big open world 3rd person adventure games & Microsoft already has a team that does fighting games (Killer Instinct). AT&T would almost certainly keep their IPs, so NeverRealm and Monolith will be relatively worthless. I could see Rocksteady providing value to a potential buyer, though.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: Order.RSS on June 13, 2020, 12:08:57 PM
Damn, feel bad for all those employees. Who's gonna buy NetherRealm if Warner/AT&T hold onto the Mortal Kombat license you know?
Worth mentioning this presumably also affects TT Games/TT Fusion, who make the LEGO games. WBIE owns them outright. Universal

If this goes ahead, depending how things shake out, it could mean another big player leaving the market. While I'm personally not really in the market for much of their stuff, WB sits on a lot of licenses which could make for decent games (The Matrix, Dune, Godzilla, King Kong, Pacific Rim, Harry Potter, DC Comics, Mad Max, Lord of the Rings, etc.).
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: Adrock on June 13, 2020, 06:01:21 PM
I feel like the Mortal Kombat IP and NetherRealm Studios should be packaged together as they're really not as valuable separately. Any developer can make a Mortal Kombat game. NetherRealm Studios can make a different game. In both cases, should it? And any company that pulls Ed Boon away from the franchise he created nearly 20 years ago is going to face some backlash. A developer is going to have to develop the next Mortal Kombat. Might as well leave it in the hands of the people who have been making it since always.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: nickmitch on June 13, 2020, 06:22:41 PM
Mortal Kombat is probably the biggest multiplatform fighting game IP in the business, and the Batman games did REALLY well for WB as well (with another seemingly on the way). Add in the possibility of a bidding war - I'm sure Activision would like another 5-6 studios to pump out CODs - and $4bn may be realistic.

I'd need to know more about the financials of the Arkham games to know if that makes the buy more viable. For one, if AT&T maintains the license, you're now in a negotiation with them every time you want to make a Batman game. I couldn't imagine the studio getting charged much for the license being a wholly own subsidiary. So the cost would almost certainly have to go up. And that would be the same with all the franchises that WBIE has access to. There's certainly value in buying talented teams of devs, but the IP is the valuable part and I'm not sure how much is there.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: MagicCow64 on June 13, 2020, 09:04:47 PM
Well, if WB sells off the games division, they'll surely still want to make money on games based on their properties. Presumably Rocksteady, WB Montreal, whoever, aren't just going to trash their projects. I would think it'll just become more like the Star Wars game licensing.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: pokepal148 on February 03, 2021, 03:39:31 PM
RIP Stadia studios. (https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2021/02/google-closes-stadias-dedicated-game-studios-after-less-than-2-years/?comments=1)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: Khushrenada on February 03, 2021, 04:05:13 PM
RIP Stadia studios. (https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2021/02/google-closes-stadias-dedicated-game-studios-after-less-than-2-years/?comments=1)

Such a shame. They had made so many great games over the year. Just another studio Nintendo let die instead of buying and saving like Alphadream! Nintendo has so much developer blood on their hands!  >:(
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: broodwars on February 03, 2021, 04:50:28 PM
Mockery aside, I am sad at the closure of Typhoon Studios, who Google bought immediately upon the success of their only game, Journey To The Savage Planet, and then threw them onto Stadia work. I quite liked that game. I hope they can rebuild from this.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: ThePerm on February 04, 2021, 08:36:24 PM
Google is ran by weird people. They can't take the time to make something work. These things don't work often immediately.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: broodwars on February 25, 2021, 06:19:36 PM
Sony is effectively shutting down Sony Japan Studio as of 4/1/21, allegedly to focus their studios on games with "worldwide appeal."

https://www.videogameschronicle.com/news/sources-playstation-is-winding-down-sony-japan-studio/ (https://www.videogameschronicle.com/news/sources-playstation-is-winding-down-sony-japan-studio/)

In addition to assisting on various projects (such as The Last Guardian, the Demon's Souls remake, the Wild Arms series, etc.), the studio's put out such games as Ape Escape, Legend of Dragoon (continuing Sony's legacy of not giving a **** about Legend of Dragoon), Fantavision, Puppeteer, and Knacks 1 & 2.

Look, I'm not going to pretend that Japan Studio put out the most wondrous games, but I appreciated the variety of the stuff they worked on, stuff that modern Sony apparently just refuses to make anymore. However, I will also note that Sony LOVED to not market Japan Studios' games, so I don't completely blame them for their games not selling.

Still, the studio was apparently reasonably profitable, and Sony desperately needed the variety in art styles and game concepts. It just wasn't making "All of the money" (to use a phrase coined by a certain internet blowhard).

I still want a PS4/PS5 version of Puppeteer, Sony. The fact that you homage it in the most recent Astro Bot is rather infuriating.

But hey, we get to look forward to a future of nothing but generic 3rd person action games with light stealth and crafting elements. Because that's what Sony makes now when they don't have a legacy franchise or major license to shill.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: Mr. Bungle on February 25, 2021, 06:23:58 PM
I still want a PS4/PS5 version of Puppeteer, Sony.
Same here. Puppeteer is one of my favorite PS3 games. It looks gorgeous in stereoscopic 3D. I would love a PS4 version that works in PSVR, but that is very unlikely.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: nickmitch on February 26, 2021, 04:44:37 PM
RIP Stadia studios. (https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2021/02/google-closes-stadias-dedicated-game-studios-after-less-than-2-years/?comments=1)

Updates and insights on Stadia (https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2021-02-26/google-video-game-unit-stadia-struggled-to-be-googley-enough)

Basically, the writer says that Stadia failed to follow the usual Google approach.

Quote
But all the buildup had some developers within Stadia worried, according to people familiar with the matter. Their deadline to ship the platform in the fall of 2019 wouldn’t allow them to deliver what players expected, they said. They argued that Google should position the launch as another beta test. After all, Google’s most successful products had followed a similar approach. Gmail was officially in beta testing for five years, for example, as the company continued to tweak and refine it.

This may or may not come as a surprise.

Quote
Stadia missed its targets for sales of controllers and monthly active users by hundreds of thousands, according to two people familiar with the matter, who asked not to be identified discussing private information. A Google spokesperson declined to comment for this story.

A really interesting tidbit to me is this part about how much Google spent on each port. (Emphasis added)

Quote
His team wooed big-name publishers like Ubisoft and Take-Two Interactive Software Inc., shelling out tens of millions of dollars to get games like Red Dead Redemption II on Stadia, according to two people familiar with the deals. The amount of money Google was willing to spend came as a shock to veteran game developers, but even that wasn’t enough. Video game platforms live or die on exclusive content. So Harrison also brought in Jade Raymond, a veteran executive who has worked on Assassin’s Creed and Star Wars, to start building an in-house development division.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: MASB on February 27, 2021, 12:34:10 PM
The whole Stadia thing felt like the third-party developers knew it wouldn't amount to anything and were just trying to get as much of the grift as possible. Now that we know it was tens of millions per port, the third-parties must have felt like they met the prize sucker of the decade.

As for Japan Studio, it's sad. But Sony Santa Monica has made it known for quite some time that those  "Japs" and their games aren't wanted. It kind of feels like Sony's game development is run by all those hipster game journalists and indie devs (usually indie devs who haven't accomplished anything since) that were constantly crying about how Japanese game devs and design were out of touch a decade ago.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: broodwars on March 29, 2021, 11:38:12 PM
Continuing Sony Interactive Entertainment CEO's Jim Ryan's legacy of incompetence and disdain for Sony's heritage, Sony finally officially confirmed today the closure dates for the PS3, PSP, & Vita PSN Stores. This follows last year's removal of those systems from their redesigned-to-be-**** browser-based store.

The PS3 & PSP online stores will go offline on 7/2/21, and the Vita's store will go down on 8/27/21. This effectively permanently kills off the Vita (which was still seeing new indie games), as Sony shut down manufacturing of Vita game cards years ago so no new physical media can be produced.

The one good(ish) piece of news from all this is that owners of these consoles will still be able to redownload titles from their Download History, provided they're willing to scroll through the thousands of pages of entries they've accumulated by this point (I did that once. Never again).

I fucking despise Jim Ryan. I've never seen someone so dedicated to killing the PlayStation brand, from his censorship policies almost exclusively against Japanese games, to his on-record disdain for older games, to the closure of Sony Japan Studios, to his lack of interest in making anything other than games in the Naughty Dog mold.

https://www.ign.com/articles/playstation-store-shut-down-ps3-vita-psp (https://www.ign.com/articles/playstation-store-shut-down-ps3-vita-psp)
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: Mr. Bungle on March 30, 2021, 01:10:17 PM
I really miss the wishlist in the store. I had a list of a dozen games I planned to get and they are gone. I can only remember half of them. I need to pick up a game or two on vita before it's too late.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: broodwars on March 30, 2021, 01:25:50 PM
I really miss the wishlist in the store. I had a list of a dozen games I planned to get and they are gone. I can only remember half of them. I need to pick up a game or two on vita before it's too late.

I really don't understand why they redesigned that storefront to REMOVE functionality. Along with Wishlisting, they also removed categories, the ability to filter games, and the demo section of the store in general, which got especially strange when games like RE8 and Ys 9 got demos after the change.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: Ian Sane on March 30, 2021, 07:27:11 PM
I heard the rumours about the PS3 store going down so my brother and I were spending a good part of the weekend downloading patches for all of our physical releases.  We only recently started living in the same house again so we had amassed independent PS3 collections over the years.  So I was going through a stack of his games downloading the most recent patches on the off-chance I might play his games someday and he was doing the same with mine.

Meanwhile I had bought some huge Capcom Humble Bundle years ago and had downloaded and installed a few of the key games I was interested in but had not downloaded a good 8 or 9 games because I was running low on hard drive space.  I had demos I didn't need anymore that I could delete but that was not a time sensitive job so I kept putting it off.  I also wouldn't have enough room for all the games anyway so I assumed I would have to upgrade the hard drive.  Well I deleted the demos on Saturday and started downloading the remaining games, often over night so as to not affect any internet performance for the rest of the family.  The lack of space was resolved by installing some of the biggest games on my brother's PS3 since he has a bigger hard drive and now that we're in the same house it really doesn't matter which PS3 "my" game is on.

Of course now it turns out you can re-download stuff so presumably this was all unnecessary.  Well, it still got me off my butt to do something I had literally put off for years so it wasn't a total waste.
Title: Re: Games Industry Death Watch 2010-present
Post by: ThePerm on March 30, 2021, 08:56:33 PM
Consoles with battery clocks should have a window to open and replace them.

Score one for the Sega Saturn. The system had built in storage, and external storage, and you could replace the battery.
Too bad I only ever play the system around the time the battery died. But it's usually a fun weekend playing Nights again.