Details of the most recent THQ intellectual property auction have come to light sooner than expected, with three companies spotlighted as the big winners. The Homeworld franchise has been snapped up by Gearbox Software, Drawn to Life has gone to 505 Games, while just about everything else – including Darksiders, Red Faction and the MX series – is now in the hands of Vienna-based publisher Nordic Games.
The court documents spell it out:
The Debtors accepted Nordic’s offer of $4.9 million for substantially all the IP except two titles, Homeworld and Drawn to Life. The bids for individual lots for the assets, excluding the Homeworld lot, did not exceed $4.9 million, and Nordic paid a premium over such individual bids to acquire the aggregate lots.
The winning $1.35 million bid from Gearbox beat out unexpected competitor Aspyr Media for the sci-fi strategy franchise. A recent blog post explains that Chief Creative Officer, Brian Martel, was the driving force. At this early stage, there’s been no real discussion about reboots, re-releases or any further development within the franchise, with Gearbox instead stating the company intends “to preserve and assemble the purest form of the original acclaimed and beloved games, Homeworld and Homeworld 2”, including making them available on today’s “leading digital platforms”.
[img_big]center,4702,2011-06-02/5654mr_toots.jpg,Red Faction: Armageddon[/img_big]
…Nordic Games, on the other hand, is crowing from the rooftops about its success. For US$4.9 million, it’s now picked up more than 150 SKUs, spanning PC, Microsoft, Nintendo and Sony platforms – the largest acquisition deal in the company’s history “so far”.
Lars Wingefors, owner and CEO of Nordic Games Group AB comments:
First and foremost we are very happy about this deal which also turns over a new leaf for the entire Nordic Games Group. In the long term, we either want to cooperate with the original creators or best possible developers in order to work on sequels or additional content for these titles.
A very important point for us is not to dash into several self-financed multi-million dollar projects right away, but rather to continue our in-depth analysis of all titles and carefully selecting different financing models for developing new instalments of acquired IPs.
The motion for the sale is expected to be heard in the US Bankruptcy Court on May 13, 2013, with purchase transactions finalised soon after.
If you are interested in shaping the future of gaming by sharing your thoughts on what Nordic Games should do with its newfound wealth of properties, pop on over to the Nordic Games forums and throw your two cents into the bucket.