French publishing giant Ubisoft revealed last week that it had bought the intellectual-property rights to the Tom Clancy name, spanning games, films, books, and merchandising that involve the best-selling author's techno-military media empire. Prior to the deal, Ubisoft had built a successful business out of the partnership with Clancy, which has borne fruit in the long-running Ghost Recon and Rainbow Six franchises, among others.
Rainbow Six Vegas, Ubisoft's successful close-quarters tactical shooter, saw its sequel debut last week and ship more than 1 million copies in the US alone. Additionally, a new Clancy-based property, the WWIII-themed strategy game EndWar, will launch on the PC, Xbox 360, and PlayStation 3 later this year, as will the code-named Tom Clancy's Air Combat. The publisher isn't content to leave Tom Clancy games there, given that group CEO Yves Guillemot mentioned the possibility of developing a Tom Clancy massive multiplayer online (MMO) game in the future.
Ubisoft shares rose as much as 12 percent to €54.98 ($86.54) on the news during trading yesterday, and were at €54.92 ($86.44) as of midday Wednesday on the Paris stock exchange.