Funcom shares tank following Secret World launch

Shares of studio on Norwegian Stock Exchange fall dramatically since new subscription-based MMO game's launch on Tuesday.

The launch of Funcom's new massively multiplayer online role-playing game The Secret World this week was not a boon for the studio on the Norwegian Stock Exchange. Shares of the Oslo, Norway-based game company plummeted this week by almost 40 percent.

It's no secret that Funcom's shares are falling.

On Monday, July 2, Funcom shares were at a high point, selling for 17.4 NOK ($2.85). The shares then began to fall, hitting 16.4 NOK ($2.68) on Tuesday, dipping further to 15.7 NOK ($2.57) on Wednesday, and reaching a new low of 13.4 NOK ($2.2) yesterday. As of press time, Funcom shares have fallen further, down to 11.3 NOK ($1.85), an improvement over the day's low of 10.55 NOK ($1.73).

On the eve of the game's launch this week, Funcom CEO Trond Arne Aas stepped down from his role at the company, remaining with the firm as a strategic advisor to the board of directors, as well as chief strategy officer.

As of press time, Funcom had not responded to GameSpot's request for comment.

Originally announced for the Xbox 360 and PC in 2007, The Secret World is a subscription-based MMO game that posits an alternate universe in which a modern-day world has been torn asunder by the reemergence of magic and other occult activity. Players will join one of three occult factions and battle one another for control of strategic locations throughout the world, including Egypt, New York, and Seoul.

[CORRECTION] An earlier version of this story reported Funcom share figures in DKK instead of NOK. GameSpot regrets the error.

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Discussion

166 comments
takakashi111
takakashi111

The game seems fun, but the problem is that it has critical errors and memory leaks, which means every user, no matter how good their computer, will crash and freeze after about 1-3 hours of continuous gameplay. This is a potential class action lawsuit since the game is being marketed as playable, and is essentially not playable. Fix the memory leaks, or give everyone a refund and sell the game to a company that has at least half a brain to fix your mess.

nechiken
nechiken

Funcom made a bad MMO. Completely unexpected. I did not see this coming from miles away. I am genuinely angry and upset that after they delivered the masterpiece that was AoC, they come out with this crap. You would think that after they made AoC, a completely original, fun, and exciting game, they would come out with this. Just what has the world come to.

sephiroth229
sephiroth229

I had a chance to play the beta and I was not impressed at all. I MIGHT HAVE purchased this game if it wasn't for the sub commitment required to play. Ah well, nice try anyways, add another game to the ever-growing Pay To Win column when this starts to tank and goes F2P.

 

It kind of irks me that a game with no real history/franchise strength would get released with a subscription required.

ObsidianReio
ObsidianReio

All I wanted was another The Longest Journey game =(

DAOWAce
DAOWAce

Originally announced in 2007.

 

Yeah; I waited all these years for disappointment.

 

Don't get me wrong.  There's really good elements in the game, the story is very interesting, but the most important part of a game is the gameplay, and it's not fun at all.

Pyro77
Pyro77

So did the stocks fall simply because the CEO stepped down?  I'm no fan of Funcom after Age of Conan but I heard this game was doing relatively well.

weewalio
weewalio

Look at all this drivel in the comments. Seriously...people are making comments, all kinds of comments, without any thought whatsoever. The so-called "fanboys" aren't the problem anymore, it's YOU lot...you band-wagonning, herd-following, meme-spouting drones. Do you people even like to play games anymore?

 

This isn't about brand loyalty; brand loyalty is the dumbest thing ever conceived of by mankind.

 

Let's see now, Bioware, Blizzard, Funcom, Electronic Arts, Bethesda, Id, Atari, Capcom, CCP, Cryptic...that's just a drop in the bucket, and according to you guys, ALL of those companies suck, blow, are ignoring, disrespecting, or scamming you, lied to you, should be hit with a class-action lawsuit, have slapped you in the face, and ruined their franchises. What the hell is wrong with you people??? Why do you go from zero to "WTF FAIL FAIL FAIL!!" on the complain-o-meter in less than 3.2 seconds?

 

This article is a perfect example. TSW has received good reviews so far, and all I read about it from players is "Ya know, this game..it's pretty damned awesome, I wasn't expecting this!"

 

But no..article about stock prices = the company sucks, the game sucks, "FAILcom", blahblahblah....

 

Lemmings.

decoy1978
decoy1978

CEO stepped down at the day it went public. I just don't see this game competing with WoW. As it is, that is the STANDARD of MMO; if a game convince you to sub for 2+ months it is a success other wise see you in the F2P section.

Phan_Phir
Phan_Phir

Free to play whenever WoW is free to play.

knightros
knightros

Funcom has been putting the "FU" in "fun" for a decade now. Any long time players of AO understand what I'm talking about.

MrDouglas
MrDouglas

Put it on Steam and remove it from Origin and I might take TSW under consideration.

made_u_look
made_u_look

I admire Funcom for trying new things, but their business was already bogged down so not sure the risk was worth it.  Either way I'm sure they bounce back.

Erebus
Erebus

If Funcom are sharing a tank, I want some time with it.

Halloll
Halloll

so its going free to play sooner

jack_is_cool
jack_is_cool

Crazy, only reading good things about The Secret World.

Ringx55
Ringx55

It's a different MMO and it's definitely not for everyone.

emperiox
emperiox

Runescape > The Secret World

fiendless7
fiendless7

as with any MMO that has released since WoW, failure is inevitable... once gamers realize this then maybe a good MMO will come out once developers see that no ones buying their trash.

Vodoo
Vodoo

If the ceo resigned the day before the game launched, then he obviously didn't have faith that it would be a hit. Looks like he didn't want this potential failure to be on his watch.

GetafixOz
GetafixOz

*GASP* never saw any of that coming.... *sigh*

Stiler
Stiler

The game is a blast imo. The story elements/characters are so much mor einvolved then even SW:TOR. The atmospher eand everything is top notch. Really a breath of fresh air in your generic mmo world.

 

Game still has some of your generic mmo style " go kill x of these" and the combat isn't special, but the world, story, misions that aren't like that (IE detective style clue mi ssions) help make it a lot better.

 

If anyone here likes adventur egames (The jlongest journey, Syberia, Sanitariuj, etc) you'll likely enjoy this game.

IgotEpixx
IgotEpixx

I'm... actually quite surprised. This game avoided the "hype train" that helps to kill things faster like WAR and TOR. If anything I've only heard (mostly) good things from unoptimistic people who were pleasantly surprised.

hlmcpherson
hlmcpherson

Btw, the game is awesome.   Combat is not so much awkward as it is different.  You do need to learn a new style of fighting since you can't just stand there and mash buttons.

hlmcpherson
hlmcpherson

I would rather focus on the fact the shares tanked due to the CEO stepping down.  Which is probably what happens to any company's stock when the CEO suddenly steps down.  Its unfortunate that he did so RIGHT after the game launched which in my opinion makes him weak...

Janpieterzun
Janpieterzun

Stock drops don't mean something is wrong. It's probably Algorythm's from prop trading firms selling the stock en mass because certain criteria are met. Creates down ticks. News outlets should really get a clue about the financial markets before publishing idiocy.

njs72
njs72

@strayfies Wow noob

weewalio
weewalio

 @strayfiesFunny, the metacritic user reviews overwhelmingly disagree with you. Guess the part where you're actually required to think to solve quests was just too taxing, yes?

 

S'ok...there are other games out there with quests that will put cute glowy exclamantion marks over eveyone and everything so that you can get it all over with as soon as possible.

 

Realmjumper
Realmjumper

 @SeaMan2ndClass The secret world is totally different, it has some similar things but for the most part strives to be it's own kind of MMO. Sorry but I have to disagree with you having played it, it is a different kind of MMO.

Grimlim
Grimlim

 @SeaMan2ndClass I'm sick of these sub-par gamespot users that do nothing but saturate the comment section with ignorant comments.

Daemoroth
Daemoroth

 @weewalio

I dunno about you, but I'm loving TSW. It's something different, not just an MMO that promises to be different and only manages to be different in title.

 

I think the article is misleading as well. If you look at any company that had a CEO suddenly quit apparently out-of-the-blue, the market gets a heart attack (Hell, even if a CEO announces retirement and it's not handled perfectly the stock price will fall). Most of the stockholders will think the CEO knows something they don't, and they'll jump ship purely for that reason.

 

But, as you said... Lemmings. :)

dwringer
dwringer

 @knightros I bought AO pretty close to release... needless to say, I never even made it to 'long time player' with the travesty of a release state THAT was in. People want to complain about unfinished games being shipped, that may very well be the worst example I've personally encountered.

Kayweg
Kayweg

 @MrDouglas

 Neither Steam nor Origin is required, you can get it directly from the official TSW website.

dwringer
dwringer

 @Halloll The fewer people who are suckered into buying it before then, the sooner that happens. Of course by then who'd want to? In fact, I think it would be a nice thing  if gamers made a personal pledge not to buy games from studios who don't survive the release or post-release of the game. Even if it is the publisher's fault and not the developer, this sends a message to the ones in charge of the dough - not the ones who were used, abused, and discarded who did all the work.

GetafixOz
GetafixOz

 @Ringx55

 Sounds like a business model shareholders will be thrilled about.

weewalio
weewalio

 @VodooAnother example of massive stupidity. "He stepped down the day before launch so that his record wouldn't be affected by what he saw as a failure". Stupid, stupid, stupid. The guy was there for the entire development time of The Secret World, but JUST BECAUSE HE LEFT BEFORE LAUNCH, you think he'll be able to claim "Who me? I wasn't even there when it went live, don't blame ME for anything that has to do with this game that was in development under my care for 5 years!"

 

Seriously, seriously stupid posters.

 

RTHKI
RTHKI

 @Vodoo He stepped down but he's still with the company advising the board of directors and helping make a Lego mmo.

Zennious
Zennious

 @Stiler Thanks for your comments, I found them informative. Maybe you could edit your post for some spelling and grammatical errors, it was a little difficult reading this. Thanks again for your comments!

weewalio
weewalio

 @IgotEpixxI wasn't going to play this. I'd barely heard of it, so I figured it couldn't be very good. Now I don't even know if I'm going to bother playing Guild Wars 2 lol!!

 

N0tYrBeezin
N0tYrBeezin

 @hlmcpherson It sounds like he just wanted to torpedo Funcom or undermine them. Such a nasty move!

EvilShabazz
EvilShabazz

 @Janpieterzun If there's anything that the Market doesn't like, it's surprises.  The CEO's sudden resignation, regardless of how TSW did or does, is something the Market will at least temporarily punish the company for.

weewalio
weewalio

 @dwringer

 Oh gimme a break. The truth is, all you 'tards want every single MMO to go "free to play" because you don't want to pay for it. You're not protesting, you're just cheap freeloaders.

decoy1978
decoy1978

I dare a developer explain that to the shareholders =P That their video game is not meant for everyone... I'd bail as fast as the CEO too.

Stiler
Stiler

 @Zennious Can't seem to edit comments on these new ones :(, my keyboard's space key gets stuck sometimes and messes me up.

blaze_boy30
blaze_boy30

 @k41m    @decoy1978 

What he's saying is that shareholders want to make money. Creating a game with the "same ole pattern" is a much safer investment (a.k.a. bet) than a game that tries to be different and isn't for everyone. I am sure there are shareholders who invest in innovative projects, but not  solely for the sake of innovation. I assume those shareholders have taken a much higher risk than usual, hoping to be rewarded for it.

 

Disclaimer: This is not a reflection of my own beliefs.

k41m
k41m

 @decoy1978

 So what developers aren't ever supposed to try something new? Just follow the same ole pattern of elves and dwarves huh? Exciting..