THQ Denies Rumors of Shutting Its Doors
THQ has responded to the assertions from Kevin Dent, well-known gaming insider who claimed through Twitter that THQ cancelled its 2014 games and started looking for a buyer. The rumors began when Dent claimed that the Warhammer MMO was cancelled after years of development. Shortly after this tweet, he claimed that more and more games were getting cancelled.
Various development studio heads started speaking on behalf of THQ, stating that they had just renewed contracts extending beyond 2014. Later in the day, THQ sent a press release concerning the rumors:
THQ has not cancelled its 2014 line-up, and has not made any decisions regarding the planned MMO. As part of the ongoing review of our business, we have made decisions to ensure that the company is strategically addressing the most attractive markets. As we have previously announced, we have dramatically reduced our commitment to the kids’ boxed games sector which leads to a significantly more focused release schedule moving forward. Our slate for calendar 2012 and beyond is focused on high-quality core games and continues to build our digital platform and business. We are excited for our pipeline of original and high-quality content along with our relationships with some of the best talent in the industry
2011 has not been THQ’s year, with many studios getting closed and some major IPs getting permanently cancelled, like Red Faction. Most recently, the uDraw studios were closed, abandoning the kid-friendly peripheral after a short life span.
Sales on promising titles, like Homefront, made for more bad news throughout the year, and many speculated that the studio closings were a way to redistribute budgets to stronger projects.
Unfortunately, no one can point out any of those “strong” projects.
THQ has never been a giant, like EA or Activision. However, after spending a huge budget on marketing and distribution, THQ seemed ready to position itself as a publishing giant. Now, the repercussions of its financial decisions are being felt.
Also, as many professionals can testify to, renewing contracts is no guarantee that these contracts will be honored. Companies do not list “bankruptcy” as part of their five-year plan. At any moment, these contracts can be reneged due to change of ownership or bankruptcy.
As of the writing of this article, Kevin Dent has stated his information came from rumors, but has defended some of his statements: “…on Warhammer at least. Why not say ‘he is a loon’ it is 100% happening” [sic].
Later today, GameTaffy’s Alex Larrabee plans to write an editorial about how to fix THQ at this critical time in its history. If you have ideas for what games need to be resurrected or cancelled, which business plans need restructuring, or who THQ needs to sell out to or partner with, leave a comment below.