Infogrames paves recovery road

France-based publisher to channel $149 million in raised capital to increased casual development; Alone in the Dark delayed to May for more "polish."

In late 2007, Atari parent company Infogrames set out to reverse its declining revenues by issuing 150 million euros (about $219 million) worth of convertible bonds. At the time, the publisher only said that the funds would be used to "finance operations and investments," with some 41 million euros being shaved off to repay outstanding Bank of America loans. In an interview today with French media outlet Les Echos, Infogrames chairman and CEO Patrick Leleu painted a clearer portrait of how the ailing publisher intends to channel the approximately 102 million euros (about $149 million) in its most recent restructuring plan.

Not unlike Majesco, one of the primary shifts in store for Infogrames, according to Leleu, will be a focus on casual development. In addition to a new emphasis on Nintendo DS and Wii titles, Infogrames will be launching a casual-game online portal, under the moniker Atari.com, which will offer "a series of specially developed games for playing online or downloading."

"In keeping with the brand's image and the market's dynamics, Infogrames' goal for the next three to five years is to become a well-known publisher of family games, not just a company famous among an elite gamer population," said Leleu.

The publisher doesn't plan on abandoning high-profile, big-budget development outright, however. Leleu said that there are still plans to continue publishing games spun from primary franchises, including Dragon Ball Z, Alone in the Dark, Test Drive, and Dungeons and Dragons. After saying that the publisher plans to place a heavier emphasis on quality, Leleu said that Eden Studio's Alone in the Dark has been delayed until May, meaning that the publisher will have failed to ship a single game for the PlayStation 3 or Xbox 360 in its fiscal 2007-2008 year.

Putting a positive spin on that fact, Leleu noted that more than a dozen games for the systems are slated for the two systems in the 2008-2009 fiscal year, one of which being the recently announced Dragon Ball Z: Burst Limit. Leleu also said that Infogrames will double its support for Nintendo's platforms this year, with 30 titles currently expected to ship.

With Alone in the Dark bumped out of fiscal 2008, Leleu expressed doubt on whether Infogrames would meet its revenue projections of 305 million euros for the year. He did say, however, that holiday sales were "good."

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31 comments
TonyMangtana
TonyMangtana

I'm definitely gunna be buying this one. I'm expecting it to be very good. The screens look good. I can't wait for this..

doonbuggy17
doonbuggy17

What's with all the hating? because of it coming out on ps2 and wii? They are being developed by different teams. I mean just watch some videos of the gameplay and look at the difference in screenshots. It's going to be a badass game. I won't think twice. at worse the ps2 version will be an extremely watered down next gen game.

Azwhtknight
Azwhtknight

I agree with GRUUG, there are way too many companies that are making the switch to casual gaming. I think that instead of just pumping out DS games and quick cheap games, they should concentrate on 1 or 2 really high quality games, either series sequels (Alone in the Dark, The Witcher, D & D, ect) or develop a cool new title to start another fan base. I think that there is more revenue to be had by doing this (especially with the sequels since people already know and follow them) than by wasting countless man hours developing inferior products that people won't buy. I hope they follow through with these kinds of games and quality as they promise to.

nwood_1241
nwood_1241

I just wish they'd get off their butts and make another Baldur's Gate game. Or sell the license to someone else who has the desire to put forth a great game for all of us hack and slash fantasy fans.

Filaki
Filaki

I am filaki´s complete absence of surprise at the delay

defjam33
defjam33

wait a sec...i thought Dungeons & Dragons license belongs to Turbine? or did i miss something?

mrkame16
mrkame16

blah blah blah, just release Alone in The Dark already, enough is enough!. or sell the rights to someone who can, this games has been anounced since what? 05' OR 06" I cant even remember anymore.

Fat_Boy_PT
Fat_Boy_PT

Delayed? Oh hell! Well, lets hope they recover and make a great game!

11Marcel
11Marcel

How about making a new good rollercoaster tycoon? They know as well as anyone that if it's done right there's a big audience that wants it. Including me.

indyano
indyano

Delayed again, too bad, way too bad.

krolstone
krolstone

v8nnwilder - I'm sure I read somewhere that the PS2/Wii version was being developed seperately from the X360/PS3 version so hopefully it'll still have the "next-gen" feel to it rather than just being an upscaled PS2 game

vahid_xbox_360
vahid_xbox_360

I want to have this game alongside with Alan Wake and Silent Hill.

devil_1994
devil_1994

seriously coming to the ps2 and wii i wanted to get it on 360 but just like v8nnwilder said ill think twice

v8nnwilder
v8nnwilder

I was really looking forward to Alone In The Dark... But seeing that it is coming out for the PS2 and the Wii as well made me think twice. Don't get me wrong they are still both good platforms but I just can't see it being really "next-gen" in graphics and game play... I could be wrong thou... I agree with umbaquaw as well can't wait for a decent Horror title to come along... Resident Evil 5 & Silent Hill 5.... Can't friggin' wait!!!!

Myugenjin
Myugenjin

Noooooooooooo... the only thing Info (aka IFG) should be focusing on is Wii/DS software. And this is coming from a PS3 fan!!! Their best bet is to publish/create titles for those 2 and their guranteed to turn profits. According to google IFG's stock quote is at 11 cents a share while ATARI at about $2 sumthin! Imagine if they could rise to $6-$8 dollars a share with smash hits on Nintendo Hw.....a man can dream!

werc96
werc96

Wow.... All this diss towards em. Theyve had a few (VERY FEW) cool games to come out...We cant completely dimiss em... Aside from friver 1...They had the wayyyy overlooked Indigo prophecy which i still love and play...The witcher is amazing...The new test drive was a major improvement...And budokai 3..(not dbzt3) was kicka$$. So dont give up hope...They might just come back up in full gear...although...this is the last shot im givin em.. After all...konami was once in dark times...until metal gear solid hit. Yup....lets see.

Gruug
Gruug

Seems that many publishers are focusing on "casual" gaming. Sure hope they are not ignoring their loyal "hardcore" gamers. While I think the future of gaming depends upon bringing more people into the fold, so to speak, the hardcore gamer is where the money is at. Make high quality high content games and publishers will make money. Or, make low quality cheap games and fill the shelves with unsold copies of Deer Hunter.

Canitbe
Canitbe

[quote]Bodboy466 Alone in the Dark? [/quote] Alone in the Dark was one of the first, 3d story driven horror games I can remember. It came out back in '92 or '93

LordSpleach
LordSpleach

Atari is like a weak little Las Plagas now.

Scynt
Scynt

Please Infograms/Atari, just give DBZ publishing completely over to Namco like we know you are going to and just die already! PLEASE!

KarthikKane
KarthikKane

AITD 5 has been delayed? This is bad news. I remembered how Driver 3 was delayed as well and they claimed it was to polish it but when it came out, it was one of the biggest disappointments ever.

Pete5506
Pete5506

I can wait, I just want the game to be good

mr_montoya85
mr_montoya85

Infogrames' goal for the next three to five years is to become a well-known publisher of family games, not just a company famous among an elite gamer population," said Leleu. Good luck with that sense you guys couldnt keep the elite gamer population happy.

Bodboy466
Bodboy466

Alone in the Dark? I'm not really sure what that is... Though, horror games were never on the top of my list. Hopefully they'll turn it around.

umbaquaw
umbaquaw

I can't wait to get my hands on some Next-gen horror games! First Condemned 2 then Alone in the Dark? Hoepefully Silent Hill 5 doesn't miss the 08 window.

Fauij
Fauij

last good game they published was driver

Canitbe
Canitbe

Unfortunate really, Infogrames used to be known for decent games, back in the day(my 286-486 days!).

MigElite
MigElite

it is on Wii and PS2 too? This game won't be good.