Double Fine interested in THQ assets?

Brutal Legend, Psychonauts developer reportedly shows interest in pursuing acquisition of unnamed THQ properties; auction set for Jan. 22.

Brutal Legend developer Double Fine has joined Electronic Arts, Warner Bros., and Ubisoft in showing interest in acquiring THQ assets during this month's proposed bankruptcy auction.

Distressed Debt Investing reports that Double Fine has requested bankruptcy filings in the ongoing THQ case. It is not clear if Double Fine's request is merely exploratory or which individual THQ assets the company may be interested in acquiring.

A Double Fine representative told GameSpot, "Double Fine owns the full intellectual property rights to Costume Quest and Stacking. However, THQ retains certain limited distribution rights that have not expired yet, and we are exploring our options with respect to those."

A United States bankruptcy court judge ruled this week that THQ must allow individual bids for its studios and franchises. Previously, the company had arranged a $60 million all-inclusive deal with Clearlake Capital Group. However, this move, along with the quick sale period, was contested by creditors and US Trustee Roberta DeAngelis.

THQ's bankruptcy auction, should one be necessary, will take place January 22 at 3 p.m. EDT in Wilmington, Delaware. Up for grabs are THQ studios and properties. These include Relic Entertainment (Company of Heroes), Volition Inc. (Saints Row), former Assassin's Creed director Patrice Desilets' THQ Montreal (unknown), and Vigil Games (Darksiders).

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Discussion

71 comments
leeko_link
leeko_link

Ha.. a developer bidding to buy a publisher now. That's something new, never expected that. I thought Tecmo Koei or maybe Square Enix would jump in, I'd never expected Double Fine.

cheamo
cheamo

This story seems a little blown out of proportion. It just looks like they are interested in their own assets that involve THQ, which makes sense.

Winchester01
Winchester01

I hope some good publisher will buy THQ assets, I don't want their games to tourn into stupid console exclusives

Srg_Ducky
Srg_Ducky

So long THQ :( you did a lot of good for my child hood, hopefully the next news feed from gamespot would be that the auction has been called off and that you are getting back onto your feet. If not, good luck, you've made awesome games, and I'm sure it will not be to long before you get back onto your feet some where else. 

chiper1997
chiper1997

No one cares about what would happen to the WWE games :(

Granpire
Granpire

Based on their statement, I see no evidence of interest in anything other than the rights to Stacking and Costume Quest.

Midnight_Twelve
Midnight_Twelve

Lets have a  kick-starter for THQ!!!!
or at the very least a Ebay auction. 
No, wait... Do that instead.

Cyber_Skaarj
Cyber_Skaarj

Why is it that they *always* list Company of Heroes for Relic in articles like these, but *never* Dawn of War? Considering that the 40k license was what gave Relic it's first truly massive success, I think that's a little unfair.

2bitSmOkEy
2bitSmOkEy

I just know I want another Saints Row.  SR3 was easily one of the funniest games I've ever played.  It's refreshing to play something that doesn't take itself seriously at all.

padddyy5
padddyy5

Three words: Destroy all Humans!

davedrastic
davedrastic

For me I think Ubisoft is the best fit for most of the franchises. 

Metro would be good alongside Rainbow 6, Ghost Recon, Zombi U. They have good FPS franchises but not breakout successes in recent years. 

Saints Row would benefit from their experience with Assassins Creed, but is different enough to have it's own place. 

Company of Heroes makes sense alongside Tom Clancy games, and the likes of R.I.S.K. 

I think Saints Row will be the main draw card for the other publishers. Unless Activision want to Call of Dutyfy Company of Heroes. 

The3rdGracchus
The3rdGracchus

Might be the best news I have heard come out of this mess.

kreegan64
kreegan64

The only game that I can recall from thq at the moment is Red Faction, what else do they have?

tempertress
tempertress moderator staff

These companies seem way to far removed to be interested in acquiring assets.

Simplythebest12
Simplythebest12

I WANT A NEW WARHAMMER 4K DAWN OF WAR GAME !! 

PLEASE SOMEONE ACQUIRE THQ !!

Tabain
Tabain

How is it not clear which ones they're interested in? In the sentence following that question, it says which one they're interested in. 

"Double Fine owns the full intellectual property rights to Costume Quest and Stacking. However, THQ retains certain limited distribution rights that have not expired yet, and we are exploring our options with respect to those."

They're interested in distribution rights to Costume Quest and Stacking.

lazycomplife
lazycomplife

Double Fine could probably turn any game into gold.

Femto513
Femto513

It surprises me that Double Fine can afford to by anyone's assets.

KingofCabal
KingofCabal

Interesting how THQ's fall started with the release of Homefront after which they had a 26% drop in stock price. Just pretty much downhill from there. All because of one crappy game.

Setho10
Setho10

I'm thinking this has something to do with the THQ published Double Fine games. Maybe some lingering rights THQ still had that Double Fine wants to buy back? I don't think they want to buy some big AAA franchise.

crimsonbrute
crimsonbrute moderator

I hope that Saint's Row 4 (and any other Saint's Row game) won't be affected by this.

punkpunker
punkpunker

As long the big three dont scoop up the best IP that THQ has, im good.

Poodlejumper
Poodlejumper

Fascinating.  Could be great.  

Could be disaster.

Better than no THQ whatsoever or EA/Activision buying everything...

Bakaro
Bakaro

If EA buying their assets...We all know what gonna happen. 

Please, just no.
(Remember WestWood!)

SavoyPrime
SavoyPrime

Ummm...Double Fine can't handle AAA games. Hence the reason why they do smaller budget games. It has been successful for them. I don't see this happening. They need to be working on Psychonauts 2 is what they need to be doing.

neumanbr
neumanbr

Cool! Double Fine it's probably the only company that's always worried about making games with good stories!!! Can you imagine Darksiders with Tim Shafer's imagination on it?

uglypinkmoose
uglypinkmoose

crazy THQ went bankrupt in the first place.... seemed like Saints Row and Darksiders were big enough hits to keep em afloat 

Vatusus
Vatusus

what? Wasnt DF close to bankrupcy? Anyways, I'd love for Tim Shafer to direct a Darksiders game.

deviant74
deviant74

If my 6 numbers come in I'm going to be at the auction.

Salt_AU
Salt_AU

LOL they must have used their Kickstarter cash to purchase a yacht.  Seems like some backers got rick rolled.

Shango4
Shango4

@davedrastic If Ubisoft doesn't buy this company their will be no company left to save


randomtext
randomtext

@kreegan64 Darksiders, Metro and Saints Row are the ones that are worth anything. 

Edit: company of heroes might be worth something as well.

pathosfire
pathosfire

@Tabain That wasn't posted when the article was originally written.  Originally, it said, a Double Fine representative was not available for questions.

davedrastic
davedrastic

@Femto513 Why doesnt someone start a Kickstarter for everyone to do a mass joint bid on the entire lot. Or similar.

RealFabioSooner
RealFabioSooner

@KingofCabal The stock price sudden fall on Homefront's release didn't remain for more than a handful of days. It was only a knee-jerk reaction of investors to the Metacritic score as THQ was already suffering financially. Once the sales figures for Homefront were out, they calmed down as Homefront still broke the 1-million mark rather quickly. It sold more than most THQ properties (particularly the first Darksiders game and the latest Red Faction).

Medal of Honor (2009) had pretty much the same critical reception as Homefront and still made 3+ million copies sold, hence the sequel. People still prefer to get a mediocre shooter than a great game in other genres, and Homefront may have well given THQ some breathing room. What killed it was pouring an absurd amount of money on uDraw for PS3/Xbox just because it has sold well on the Wii. It was like Capcom trying to bring Monster Hunter Tri over and spending money like it was CoD.

davedrastic
davedrastic

@KingofCabal No. A history of losing money, and Udraw was the final straw. According to articles i've read

Hurvl
Hurvl

@F22_King_Raptor I also hope it will be business as usual. By the way, what does "Ranger" mean? I've only seen "Moderator" next to people's user names, never any other titles.

Setho10
Setho10

@SavoyPrime I'm curious if THQ owned the rights to any of the games it published for Double Fine. Maybe DF just wants to buy back the rights to Costume Quest or some other THQ published game they may have lost the rights to. After all, THQ has dozens of owned franchises. They may only focus on five or six of them but they have been around for decades. Who knows what obscure, long dormant, THQ franchise Double Fine might want.


Meta-Gnostic
Meta-Gnostic

@SavoyPrime Who says AAA IP's have to always be AAA games? There are countless examples of AAA IP's being used for smaller games. Look at Nintendo, making AAA Mario and Zelda games and then making smaller portable titles using the same IPs.

davedrastic
davedrastic

@uglypinkmoose It goes to show how much money developers cost. I'm pretty sure that the first Platinum range for the PS1 were games that had sold a million copies - whcih then was considered highly successful. Now a million copies will barely break even. I think. 

RealFabioSooner
RealFabioSooner

@davedrastic @lazycomplife Double Fine is one of the few studios that I'll get games from as soon as they're released without thinking twice and before even bothering to play a demo.

The others being... Let me think... Platinum Games, CD Projekt Red... Insomniac if Fuse proves to be as good as Resistance. Klei Entertainment in spite of Shank being mediocre, they won me with Mark of the Ninja and Don't Starve. And that's probably pretty much it.

Oh, Kojima Productions. But it's a one-series studio so far, it almost doesn't count. 

SavoyPrime
SavoyPrime

@Setho10 Good call Setho! I had completely forgot that THQ had published Costume Quest for them. And I believe they published Stacking as well. So like you said, maybe they want to buy back the rights to those particular IPs if they don't own them (which I assume they probably don't).

SavoyPrime
SavoyPrime

@Meta-Gnostic Darksiders is the only IP I care about that THQ has. Frankly, I can't see Darksiders being used for a smaller game. Not when the very principles of Darksiders is built on big set pieces.

davedrastic
davedrastic

@Meta-Gnostic @SavoyPrime I can't see FIFA as anything other than a football game. F1 is unlikely to be anything but a racing game. I'm not quite sure how accurate your postulation is.