Sacred 2 developer bankrupt

Ascaron Entertainment enters administration due to extended development time on Xbox 360, PS3 editions of action RPG; PC expansion, Sacred 3 teased.

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Last week, cdv Software Entertainment announced that the Xbox 360 edition of Ascaron Entertainment's Sacred 2: Fallen Angel had gone gold and was expected to ship alongside the PlayStation 3 edition this May. That game's release apparently couldn't come soon enough, however, as Ascaron confirmed today that it has filed for bankruptcy protection in its native Germany.

"After four years developing Sacred 2: Fallen Angel, an extended development delay made it necessary for Ascaron to go into administration," the developer said in a statement. "Even with the high personal commitment of all Ascaron employees, it was not possible to make up for this delay." The German developer also said that it has entered into negotiations with "several well-known interested parties to discuss a positive takeover."

Ascaron noted that its bankruptcy filing will not impact the release of Sacred 2: Fallen Angel, saying that development on both console editions has now wrapped and reconfirming their May release. Ascaron's Heiko tom Felde also emphasized that the PC edition of Sacred 2--released in November 2008--will see no interruption with its online multiplayer component or SecuROM game activation software.

Indeed, assuming Ascaron resolves its monetary issues, the game maker said it is already at work on an expansion to the PC game. The developer also confirmed that it has begun development on a full-fledged follow-up, Sacred 3. No other details on either project were revealed.

For more on Sacred 2, check out GameSpot's full review, as well as the most recent trailer for the console editions of the game.

Discussion

66 comments
ignoman
ignoman

This is just more evidence in the case that the old model of game development and publishing is failing. I don't claim to have the answers but its obvious the face of the industry is changing. Personally, I don't think piracy is the problem, or DRM the answer, so I won't entirely open that worm can. Really though, I think someone decided that they could somehow force pirates to pay for games that they would have not otherwise, and that's proving not to be the case. Gamers will buy the games they want to buy and steal the games they want to steal, and nothing is ever going to change that... I still think that the classic business model of making a product that people *want* (which would ultimately lead to more thefts AND more sales) is the best way to go. It's just a shame the stakes of the game are so high nowadays... Ascaron was the latest cook to leave the kitchen after feeling too much heat. Sacred 2 is fun though, my friends and I are playing it on PS3 and it serves its purpose as the next-gen Guantlet/CoN/Diablo clone well. Hopefully they will direct their efforts towards improving their game with patches, DLC and sequels before they run themselves out of the market worrying about how they'll get dishonest people to make an honest purchase.

min82
min82

it is due to the institution of piracy that drove games from Ascaron to use such stringent methods (even Ubisoft games once used Starforce 5 security system that installed a driver in your hard drive to detect emulation etc.) that actually deterred sales etc. It wasn't their fault, we can't blame them or the game itself for being 'crappy' by using such strict security. If you were the CEO of such title/game, you will want to protect against malfeasance as well. I don't blame the game being "crappy" for its strict security or, against "lousy titles" etc. A lot of commitment & dedication was put into the creation of the game; heck it took 4 years, amidst the administration difficulties, and security compromises. Several patches and updates including additional game content was released after the game was sold. This is INDEED one company that LISTENS to fans, (they added content fans wanted in the following patches, its under the 'wishing well' section of Ascaron forums) and not like some BIG POPULAR companies, such as EA for example (though I do like EA games sometimes, but they hardly LISTEN and make changes to their games). Even after bankruptcy, they kept on going for their upcoming promises; the Xbox 360 and PS3 will be shipped as promised, as well as the development of Sacred 3 at fans requests. Seems inertial pressures from the environment that favour successful institutions such as EA and Blizzard has dampened Ascaron's ambition of creating an action-RPG and games that fans would like. Though it is subjective, and others may not like it, at least they did come up with something special and a unique ARPG rather than stereotypical RPG's with the same mechanics. Credit is given where credit is due. I hope the next developer or company that buys Ascaron follows in its vision and evaluates fans feedback rather than just change the environment to suit themselves like other big & famous companies had done. After all, the fans are the ones that make the game, not entirely the game itself. Cheers!

ciaxhieu
ciaxhieu

seriously F&%$ those people who discriminate against a company for protecting their games, maybe if you people actually BUY the game, yeah i said it! pay for the god dam game, than maybe good developer like this wont need to put so much security in their games. hell i am betting that blizzard will need to put forth as much money to protect diablo 3 too when it comes out!

kargion
kargion

Sacred was great Sacred 2 is great enough said

Inconnux
Inconnux

Securom = no sale ... I am glad you guys finally figured it out... too bad it was before you had to declare bankruptcy

Shiftfallout
Shiftfallout

Sacred 2 is a crappy game, there is a reason they went bankrupt and part of it has to do with the recent crappy titles and excessive use of horrible game protection/malware included in their games.

GagyiLaszlo
GagyiLaszlo

I hate it that everybody wants to buy Sacred 2 now. It's as though Ascaron is a "cyber-bum" asking you for some change. Survival of the fittest!

Vasot
Vasot

Sacred 2 was in general a FAILURE and did not sell as well as they expected (and even by releasing 100000 patches it is way late now...) . By the way they can go scr*w themselves with their awful Securom activation protection. Developers that choose this kind of unfriendly DRM for their games deserve the worse !!

kokonut1971
kokonut1971

First off the title of this article is misleading people into thinking that Ascaron is bankrupt or has shutdown which is not the case at all. For the moment at least. Facts: Before making half arsed comments about the game or the situation here, people should use google and do a little bit more research on what is really going on. If you do not know what the game is about then try the pc demo before saying anything about the game. The game has been patched many times and is getting better as time goes by. Ascaron has an official forum that will give you info on what is going on if you are wondering what is up. http://forum.sacredeng.ascaron-net.com/forumdisplay.php?f=107 is their official forums http://forum.sacredeng.ascaron-net.com/showthread.php?t=58951 is a thread in their forums that explains what is going on somewhat more clearly.... peace!

Curzad
Curzad

Going to buy Sacred 2 now. Ascaron is a good company and would hate to see them go under.

xerxmasters
xerxmasters

buy Sacred 2 for the sake of Ascaron! In moments like this I kinda hate piracy...

EPaul
EPaul

That sucks at least the still are trying to make a sequel

okassar
okassar

Oh well,at least Sacred 2 is will be released.

gk_of_berea
gk_of_berea

Yeah, you hate to see a company that puts out quality work go under. I hope they are able to recover.

glhx2112
glhx2112

I usually wait 6 months or longer after a game is released, before buying it. In this case, the company may not be around, or able to support the game after release. I hope they survive. Either way, I plan on trying out the 360 version of this game. The sooner they get this game on the street, the faster they will make some money!

solidstein
solidstein

just cuz there in bankruptcy does mean there going out of business we dont no how much they owe versus how much they have in assets and also if sacred does well then that could help them alot ..but even if they get out of bankruptcy will they be able to get loans to make anymore games it can become very tricky once u file for bankuptcy

bennae66
bennae66

sacred1 was ok on pc. my gf and i both looking forward to a 360 version

NavIGOtoR25
NavIGOtoR25

What a pitty, they made fashinating games.

zgreenwell
zgreenwell

Its possible they could recover from this if Sacred 2 for consoles does well.

bodylotion
bodylotion

I might buy Sacred 2 when it's a bit cheaper.

Gen-Gawl
Gen-Gawl

That sucks. I like their games.

BlackBaldwin
BlackBaldwin

thats too bad... I hate it when little studios go these stages of hardships... Its strange really that when your a big company you really don't push out great games with big ideas but when your a little one you usually surprise people with your creative ideas... I totally hope Ascaron gets the help it needs..

WiredDreemz
WiredDreemz

I actually really liked Sacred 2, although so many reviewers gave it such a bad review. It's one of the titles that you can play slow in your own time. I really look forward to a sequel and expansion pack.

somberfox
somberfox

That sucks, Sacred is awesome and rivals, if not surpasses Titan Quest as the best Diablo style game.

Se-Bo
Se-Bo

btw: this is the 2nd time Ascaron files for bankruptcy. First time was back in 2001. So this isn't necessarily the end for this studio.

Ian-Cognito
Ian-Cognito

@Avenger1324: Makes perfect sense, by being protected from bankrupcy they won't go under before the income arrives. If they went bankrupt they wouldn't receive a penny from the sales of the game, and any income from sales doesn't trickle through to the developers as soon as it hits the tills... takes time to get to them. This way they've got protection until the cash starts to appear in their bank account, when everything's back to normal they just leave administration and get back to normal trading.

zero9167
zero9167

hopefully it has coop. even better if it has 4 player online coop!

corwinn01
corwinn01

If these developers would make better games maybe they wouldn't be going bankrupt

Avenger1324
Avenger1324

Odd timing to file for bankruptcy - just before all the revenue from selling the completed game would come in. Does that make sense to anyone?

thisranks
thisranks

I enjoy Sacred 1 as well. It's sad but not surprising to see this happening. Development just costs too much nowadays. While i didn't like the move to good/bad routes, i am looking forward to playing this on the PS3. Can't say no to a Sera........

Kleeyook
Kleeyook

It's just an ordinary game to play before FF13's arrival. :(

jansdman
jansdman

It's sad that both action rpg game Titan Quest and Sacred developers are gone. As much as I love Diablo series, I am a big fan of action RPG genre and Iron Lore did a very good job on Titan Quest. I had hopes on Sacred 2 but heard about bugs throughout the game. Till Diablo I|I comes out, I suggest D2 LOD or Titan Question IT to satisfy your arpg cravings.

Vasot
Vasot

Sacred 2 was a failure. It was nothing special and had some nasty bugs when it was released. Gamespot gave it a 7.0

mpeg3s
mpeg3s

MS should BUY this company for an XBOX exclusive. Please report that MS is aquiring!

asmoddeuss
asmoddeuss

Sacred 2 PC is great I just love it , my wife and my brother like it also. The last update added better graphics and phyxs effects to the game , it has a great phyxs engine. Its a sad to read the above news , as Sacred 2 was going to the right direction. I hope Ascaron can survive and deliver to us more fun ! If you didn't play sacred 2 for PC yet , go and buy it, I highly recommend it , just don't forget to patch the game to the latest version otherwise the game will be buggy.

geomyr
geomyr

too bad i haven't played the first one yet and now the developers say that they are bankrupt :(

guppieface
guppieface

hopefully itll be fun, i would buy it this is my kind of game. more sword and sorcery, im tired of aliens and sci fi.

adders99
adders99

so is this game going to have online co-op?

ahpuck
ahpuck

hehe, dude walks like he is got a wedgie. if this game gets a decent score i'm going to buy it.

Jettero-Heller
Jettero-Heller

I never even heard of this game until I read this article about Asceron's dilema.I love a good hack 'N slash & if the console version is up to snuff they will definitely get my money.

tooki
tooki

I would have bought this a long time ago for the PC if the price would just go down a bit. I have a hard time justifying spending $50 on this when I'm not even sure how much I'll like it.

Koi-Neon-X
Koi-Neon-X

I can't wait until this game comes out! I'm sure Sacred 2 will sell just fine!

godzillavskong
godzillavskong

Sounds weird to see a company going into bankruptcy, yet teasing of a release of Sacred 3? Maybe they should wait to see how well Sacred 2 sells.

Folleyrules
Folleyrules

This will be the best RPG on x-box 360 to date. I will go gold to play this with 4 of my buddy's.

firedrakes
firedrakes

true but this can help. seeing the money that comes in will fill their account. again to make games