Author Topic: THQ files for bankruptcy  (Read 1927 times)

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Offline GamerMan316

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THQ files for bankruptcy
« on: December 20, 2012, 07:58:53 PM »
THQ files for bankruptcy
Has found a buyer. Game development to progress unhindered.

Saints Row and Darksiders publisher THQ has filed for a Chapter 11 bankruptcy today, the company announced.

THQ's four owned studios and games in development - Metro: Last Light, Company of Heroes 2, South Park: The Stick of Truth, and the Saints Row title formerly known as Enter the Dominatrix - are still moving forward under the new ownership of Clearlake Capital Group, a company that's buying out THQ's assets for $60 million.

The publisher will still operate under its new owners and THQ noted that it "does not intend to reduce its workforce as a result of the filing, and employees will continue to work their usual schedules and receive normal compensation and benefits, pending customary Court approval."

“The sale and filing are necessary next steps to complete THQ's transformation and position the company for the future, as we remain confident in our existing pipeline of games, the strength of our studios and THQ's deep bench of talent,” said THQ CEO Brian Farrell.

“We are grateful to our outstanding team of employees, partners and suppliers who have worked with us through this transition. We are pleased to have attracted a strong financial partner for our business, and we hope to complete the sale swiftly to make the process as seamless as possible.”

Former Naughty Dog producer and THQ president Jason Rubin added, “We have incredible, creative talent here at THQ. We look forward to partnering with experienced investors for a new start as we will continue to use our intellectual property assets to develop high-quality core games, create new franchise titles, and drive demand through both traditional and digital channels.”

THQ's NASDAQ listing is expected to expire in nine days, as is customary for Chapter 11 filings.

Prior to this the publisher raised over $5 million in a scant two weeks due to its ridiculously cheap THQ Humble bundle.


Offline nCogNeato

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Re: THQ files for bankruptcy
« Reply #1 on: December 21, 2012, 11:07:16 AM »
Best wishes everything works out.

Offline nCogNeato

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Re: THQ files for bankruptcy
« Reply #2 on: January 23, 2013, 05:56:57 PM »


Today, THQ was officially sold and auctioned off. Within the next few weeks, the company will be no more.

The company's assets have been divided, pending final court approval: Sega agreed to purchase Relic (Company of Heroes), Koch Media has agreed to purchase Volition (Saint's Row) and the Metro property, Crytek has agreed to buy Homefront, Take-Two will purchase the unannounced game Evolve, and Ubisoft will buy THQ Montreal and the South Park game.

Here's the letter that THQ's CEO and president sent to all employees, passed along to us from a former THQ employee:

Quote

    To All THQ Employees:

    We now have the answers we've been seeking through our financial restructuring and
    Chapter 11 case. While much will be written, here are the facts of the bids and auction
    that occurred t:

        Yesterday morning, we received a competing bid for the operating business,
        along with Clearlake's offer, and numerous offers for separate assets.
        During an auction process that lasted over 22 hours, the final conclusion was
        that the separate-asset bids would net more than a single buyer for the majority
        of the company.
        Shortly, we will, present the results to the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, which must
        concur with our assessment.
        The proposed sales of multiple assets is as follows :
        Sega agreed to purchase Relic
        Koch Media agreed to purchase Volition and Metro
        Crytek agreed to purchase Homefront
        Take 2 agreed purchase Evolve and
        Ubisoft agreed to purchase Montreal and South Park

    We expect these sales to close this week.

    Some assets, including our publishing businesses and Vigil, along with some other
    intellectual properties are not included in the sale agreements. They will remain part of
    the Chapter 11 case. We will make every effort to find appropriate buyers, if possible.

    What this means for employees

    We expect that most employees of the entities included in the sale will be offered
    employment by the new owners. However, we cannot say what these owners may
    intend, and there will likely be some positions that will not be needed under the
    new ownership. You should receive notice this week or early next week if the new
    owners intend to extend employment to you. Please note that the terms of your new
    employment, including pay and benefits, may be different from the current terms of
    your employment with THQ.

    If you are an employee of an entity that is not included in the sale, we regret that
    your position will end. A small number of our headquarters staff will continue to be
    employed by THQ beyond January 25 to assist with the transition. THQ has sufficient
    resources to pay these employees for work going forward, and we will be contacting
    these employees immediately to ensure their continued employment during this
    transition period. We are requesting the ability to offer certain severance pay to
    minimize disruption for employees of non-included entities as they determine the next
    steps in their careers.

    We know you will have many questions about this news. We'll be meeting tomorrow
    when we return to talk through this announcement and to answer any questions you
    have. You will receive a benefits fact sheet and FAQs with answers to some questions
    that may be on your mind. Please review these materials closely.

    A personal note

    The work that you all have done as part of the THQ family is imaginative, creative,
    artistic and highly valued by our loyal gamers. We are proud of what we have
    accomplished despite today's outcome.

    It has been our privilege to work alongside the entire THQ team. While the company
    will cease to exist, we are heartened that the majority of our studios and games will
    continue under new ownership. We were hoping that the entire company would remain
    intact, but we expect to hear good news from each of the separate entities that will be
    operating as part of new organizations.

    For those THQ employees who are part of entities that are not included in the sale, we
    are confident that the talent you have displayed as part of THQ will be recognized as you
    take the next steps in your career.

    Thank you all for your dedication and for sharing your talent with the THQ team. We
    wish you the best of luck and hope you will keep in touch.

    Sincerely,

    Brian Farrell
    Chief Executive Officer

    Jason Rubin
    President

[Kotaku]

Offline nCogNeato

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Re: THQ files for bankruptcy
« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2013, 06:00:08 PM »








Offline GamerMan316

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Re: THQ files for bankruptcy
« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2013, 06:05:48 PM »
I wonder who will buy the WWE rights!


Offline GamerMan316

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Re: THQ files for bankruptcy
« Reply #5 on: January 23, 2013, 06:44:57 PM »
Take Two have got the WWE rights.   :)


Offline Sload

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Re: THQ files for bankruptcy
« Reply #6 on: January 23, 2013, 07:00:20 PM »
And Vigil Games is gone, goddammit!

Offline GamerMan316

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Re: THQ files for bankruptcy
« Reply #7 on: January 24, 2013, 06:18:52 AM »
Dust Settles on THQ Sale, No Buyer for Darksiders Studio Vigil

Yesterday, all of THQ’s assets, including its IP and owned studios, were auctioned off to the highest bidder.

And while most of the rumoured buyers from earlier in the day turned out to be correct, including SEGA picking up Company of Heroes studio Relic and Koch Media buying Saints Row dev Volition, there were a few surprises.

Foremost amount these is that no buyer came forward for Darksiders developer Vigil Games.

Reflecting on the closure, Vigil Games’ Lead Combat Designer Ben Cureton wrote an emotive farewell message on NeoGaf.

“I'm sitting at my desk among... what appears to be a warzone,” he wrote. “The walls look bare. It's quiet.

“The seats are empty.

“We've all been on edge for the past couple months... and more so, the last couple weeks. I mean, I'm sure you can imagine what it's like to wonder if you will have a job tomorrow. Most of us here joked about it just to keep the mood light, but we all knew what could happen. Now I look around and I realize... it did happen.

He continued, “...so maybe you can imagine what it feels like when you read the list of who bought what only to discover your name is not on the list. Why? Did we do something wrong? Were we not good enough? Were we not worth 'anything?' Imagine that.”

You can read the full, heartbreaking letter here.

Meanwhile, Darksiders lead designer Haydn Dalton also weighed in on the apparent death of the studio.

"There was a shimmer on a slither of hope, that at one point, there'd be a Darksiders 3," he tweeted. "Four-player co-op: it rode off into the sunset today."

That’s four-player co-op with all of the Horsemen of the Apocalypse.

Speaking to GI.biz, THW President Jason Rubin said, “I was brought in eight months ago to help turn this ship around, and while I’m disappointed that we could not effect a sale for the entire operating business, I am pleased that the new buyers will be providing jobs to many of our very talented personnel.

“When we first announced the sale process, I said I would be happy if the company’s games and people had a bright future, even if it meant I did not have a job at the end of it. And I still feel that way.”


Offline nCogNeato

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Re: THQ files for bankruptcy
« Reply #8 on: January 24, 2013, 11:21:23 AM »
That f*cking breaks my heart.   :'(

Offline zerosum

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Re: THQ files for bankruptcy
« Reply #9 on: January 25, 2013, 12:51:12 AM »
More of the sads stuffs....
(click to show/hide)

Source:[Kotaku]

Quote
This afternoon, THQ CEO Brian Farrell and president Jason Rubin met with about a hundred of their staff at corporate headquarters in southern California.
 
Tomorrow, most of them will lose their jobs. Within the next few weeks, the video game publisher will disappear entirely. This was their last meeting.
 
"There were plenty of people crying," said one former employee who preferred that we not use his name. "Brian seemed very emotional."

Although THQ has been struggling for the past year or so, the company still employed hundreds of people, many of whom had no idea what was going on until yesterday. For most of this week, according to the person we spoke to, THQ's employees were just sitting at their desks, checking websites like Kotaku for rumors on what might have been happening during the auction on Tuesday and the bankruptcy hearing on Wednesday.
 
Yesterday afternoon, Farrell and Rubin sent out a letter: the company would be closing. Everyone would be losing their jobs.
 
"We had no inside info until that letter came," the former employee said. "So that kinda sucked. But it wasn't a huge surprise by that point... I think people had sort of written off the company a long time ago. It's been a downhill journey steeply for the last year."
 
Hundreds watched on video-cast during the meeting as Farrell and Rubin thanked THQ's employees for their service and gave them the rundown on what would happen from there. Some people asked tough questions: one employee, for example, asked why the bankruptcy seemed focused on getting money for the companies that THQ owed, rather than providing money to help employees keep their jobs.
 
"It's taken its toll on people for sure," the former employee said.
 
The last days of THQ have not been pleasant for many of their employees: during the time leading up to the announcement that THQ's studios and game properties would be auctioned off, only a few people were told what was happening.
 
There was one married couple that worked at THQ, the former employee told me. The wife knew about the auction: the husband didn't. So she had to lie to her husband, making up excuses for why she was working 14 hours a day.
 
"I know people who have worked there for 17 years," the former employee said. "It's hit them hard."
 
Last night, one THQ employee sent an event invitation to the rest of the staff: Friday afternoon at 3pm, many of the people who once worked at the embattled video game publisher will go to one last party.
 
"f*ck it, let's drink."
« Last Edit: January 25, 2013, 07:39:35 AM by zerosum »

Offline nCogNeato

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Re: THQ files for bankruptcy
« Reply #10 on: January 25, 2013, 11:09:29 AM »
"f*ck it, let's drink" indeed.   :(

If there's a silver lining in here somewhere, perhaps we'll see more talented indie studios pop up in the coming months?   :-\

Offline zerosum

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Re: THQ files for bankruptcy
« Reply #11 on: January 25, 2013, 07:31:37 PM »
Video documentation of the last moments:
<a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jt0TdwcPkDo" target="_blank">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jt0TdwcPkDo</a>

You know that bottle's going collector's item soon!

Offline nCogNeato

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Re: THQ files for bankruptcy
« Reply #12 on: January 26, 2013, 05:16:35 PM »
That was beautifully appropriate.  I'm sad.

Offline nCogNeato

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Re: THQ files for bankruptcy
« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2013, 05:10:17 PM »
Crytek's new Austin studio could be a second chance for Vigil

Crysis developer Crytek is coming to America.

The newly-formed Crytek USA Corp. will be located in Austin, Texas, and headed by CEO David Adams, the former GM and co-owner of local Darksiders developer Vigil.

Adams will oversee a team of "35 experienced developers" consisting of "some of the brightest development talent in the industry," according to a statement given to Gamasutra. Though we've yet to confirm this for sure, a representative strongly hinted at the possibility that this staff may have several other veterans from Vigil, whose days appear to be numbered after bankrupted owner THQ failed to find it a buyer.

When asked if the new Austin studio was essentially a purchase of Vigil Games, Crytek rep Jens Schafer told us Crytek USA is "more like a new start for [the team at Vigil]." We're following up for more details.

A new studio could be good news for a crippled Austin game development community. In addition to Vigil's slow death, the last eight months alone saw a major reduction at Starhawk developer Lightbox, a near-shutdown of Zynga Austin, and a restructuring of BioWare Austin.

Crytek USA is the Frankfurt, Germany-based company's 9th worldwide studio, and its first in the United States. Its other studios are located in the Ukraine, Hungary, Bulgaria, Seoul, Nottingham, Shanghai and, most recently, Istanbul.

In addition to the Crysis and Warface series, Crytek is also the developer of the CryEngine game engine.

The company is currently working on Homefront 2, the license for which it acquired from original publisher THQ in its bankruptcy auction.

[Gamasutra]

Offline GamerMan316

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Re: THQ files for bankruptcy
« Reply #14 on: January 29, 2013, 09:47:45 AM »
Crytek Opens New Austin Studio, Saves a Number of Vigil Staff

Following THQ's demise and the auctioning off of its assets to various parties, Darksider II developer Vigil Games' future looked uncertain, but it looks as though most of the staff from the doomed studio have found a home at Crytek's newly founded studio in Austin, Texas.

Crytek's ninth worldwide studio, Crytek USA is headed up by former GM and co-owner of Vigil Games, David Adams, with a team of "35 experienced developers" consisting of "some of the brightest development talent in the industry."

Apparently a number of these are thought to be former Vigil staff, which has led to the question of whether this is in essence a purchase of Vigil Games by Crytek.

Crytek representative Jens Schafer told Gamasutra that Crytek USA is "more like a new start for [the team at Vigil]," rather than an outright acquisition of the Darksiders dev.

Of course, Vigil's core team isn't Crytek's only THQ-based acquisition, with the developer also snapping up the rights to Homefront 2. This could also mean a light at the end of the tunnel for Vigil's 'Crawler', which had also been in the pipeline before THQ folded. It's uncertain whether the Darksiders series will live on however.

Former THQ boss Jason Rubin expressed his relief at the fresh start for the core Vigil team, stating on Twitter: "Great news for Vigil, at least the core team... Thanks to Crytek for saving as much as they could of a fantastic team."



 

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