THQ sales, losses nearly double

Warhammer 40K: Space Marine ships 1.2 million; publisher tops forecast with $146 million in sales, $92 million in net losses; new "exciting core title" to be announced next month.

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The September release of Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine sparked sales for THQ but couldn't improve the company's bottom line. THQ today reported its financial results for the three months ended September 30, revealing that Space Marine shipped 1.2 million copies to retailers as the publisher posted revenues and net losses that both nearly doubled year-over-year.

Titus racked up 1.2 million new notches on his bolter.
Titus racked up 1.2 million new notches on his bolter.

For the quarter, THQ reported sales of $146 million, up 89 percent from $77.1 million for the same quarter last year. While the publisher's sales nearly doubled, so too did its net losses. The quarter saw THQ post a net loss of $92.4 million, compared to $47 million in red ink for the same period the year before.

Despite the losses, THQ expressed optimism for the future. The publisher expects its October-December quarter--anchored by Saints Row: The Third, WWE '12, and the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 launches of the uDraw Game Tablet--to be the company's biggest ever in terms of revenues and profits. In a post-earnings conference call, THQ CEO Brian Farrell said preorders for Saints Row: The Third and WWE '12 are both up significantly over the preceding installments in those series.

While the uDraw is set to launch before year's end, the game THQ described as a "killer app" for the peripheral--Disney Animator--has been delayed. In the conference call, THQ CFO Paul Pucino said Disney Animator has been pushed from its original March 2012 launch window and is now planned to debut on the Wii U and uDraw in the company's fiscal 2013, which runs from April 2012 to March 2013.

Finally, Farrell said THQ has more up its sleeve. Specifically, he teased that the publisher has "one more exciting core title that will be unveiled next month."

Space Marine casts players as Captain Titus of the Ultramarine chapter of the iconic Warhammer 40,000 fighting force, one of humanity's last hopes in an intergalactic war against the sinister Orks. Players are charged with defending an Imperial Forge World from the Orkish invasion, a task made more complicated when the forces of Chaos make their presence known.

For more on the third-person shooter, check out GameSpot's review of Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine.

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