As planned, the remaining assets in THQ’s stable of properties went up for auction this month, and the many leftovers sitting in the former video game publisher’s archives have been scattered to the wind. Bids for five lots of different game properties were made between Apr. 1 and 15, and according to documents detailing the court proceedings, the company raised quite a bit of money. Not as much as you might expect for properties that produced more than 30 games and costs hundreds of millions in development and distribution costs over the course of nearly fifteen years, but still a healthy chunk of change nonetheless.
Seventeen bids were made for the six separate lots representing THQ’s remaining holdings, raising between $6 and $7 million in the process. The offers won’t be presented to the court and finalized before May, but they will put a number of notable series into new studios hands.
The lots were arranged in an unusual way, and four of them represent individual properties. One includes the Darksiders franchise, while another represents the four games from the Red Faction series. The other two were for the long dormant Homeworld series of space simulators and the long-running racing series MX vs. ATV, which THQ tried – unsuccessfully – to reimagine as a microtransaction-based budget series.
It’s the remaining two lots that are the most intriguing, though. They are grab bags of different original series and licenses still held by THQ with some real gems within. Lot five, for example, includes the rights to forty individual games including bombs like uDraw that crippled THQ, but it also includes critical and commercial hits like the de Blob, Destroy All Humans!, and Full Spectrum Warrior series.
The sixth lot meanwhile is for thirty-six licenses held by THQ. That these weren’t sold individually is sure to be an annoyance for a number of different developers. Tim Schafer’s Double Fine, for example, was looking to gain back the console publishing rights to its games Stacking and Costume Quest, but these were lumped into the lot. The same goes for the console rights to Jellyvision’s 2011 You Don’t Know Jack. Hopefully those developers won’t have to fight too hard to regain these publishing rights or it could make future releases less likely for players.
There has already been a great deal of interest in the various properties, but we won’t know until at least May where the properties landed.
Source: GamesIndustry International