Critics: Saints Row IV is big, goofy fun

Saints saints-row-4-topRow IV may not be a game people point to when making the “games are art” argument, but that’s not stopping critics from lavishing praise on the latest installment of this open-world action romp — even if they feel a little guilty doing so.

In a year filled with games that take themselves quite seriously, Saints Row IV revels in its utter ridiculousness. In the game’s first 30 minutes, you’ll travel from the Middle East to the White House to an alien space ship. And that’s just the set up for a story that borrows liberally from “The Matrix,” “Independence Day,” Mass Effect, and Grand Theft Auto.

Read more at Yahoo! Games

Video Game Industry Can’t Catch a Break, Still Struggling

January 100427964-man-looking-at-video-games-store-getty.240x160was not kind to the video game industry.

One major publisher was split into pieces. One high profile development studio was shut down and another seems likely to be headed in that direction. And another publisher is trading in the Nasdaq red zone. What’s going on?

Read more at CNBC.com

Tumultuous game industry rocked by wave of studio closures

The game-companies-closedsad truth of the modern video game industry is that regardless of how talented (or lucky) a game maker is, nobody has unlimited lives.

January was certainly proof of that. A one-time powerhouse publisher was ripped to shreds. A legendary developer was handed a pink slip. If things don’t radically reverse course, the next month or two could see another studio and another game god meet the same fate.

Read more at Yahoo! Games

THQ assets sold off, company shuts down

THQ thq-logohas shut its doors.

A bankruptcy auction marked the formal end of the company that was once the industry’s third largest publisher, divvying up its pieces among bidders like Vikings after a raid. Several companies bought THQ’s franchises and developers for total of about $72 million.

Read more at Yahoo! Games

THQ split-up complete as competitors take pieces

THQ, saints_row_2once the third-largest publisher in the videogame industry, is no more.

A bankruptcy auction, concluded Wednesday, has broken up the company into pieces and sold them to competitors, along with its key videogame titles and licenses, dashing executives’ hopes that it could remain intact with the help of a corporate white knight.

Read more at Daily Variety

With THQ’s demise, plenty of questions remain

The thqblackfat lady has sung at THQ. After years of near misses, the company that was at one time the industry’s third largest publisher is being sold for parts.

THQ has a lot of haters in the game world, with plenty of people pointing fingers of blame at the company’s management, expansion philosophy and business methods. But any time a publisher is forced to close its doors – especially when it has titles on the near horizon that seem to have so much potential – it’s sad.

Read more at Gamasutra

What does bankruptcy mean for the future of THQ?

There’s metrolla certain irony that THQ — a company whose name is an abbreviation of Toy Head Quarters — met its fate less than a week before Christmas.

Make no mistake, THQ as we’ve known it is no more. The name might live on — and many of the games that were in the pipeline will likely make it to market. But even if that entity eventually proves to be a major force in the video game publishing industry at some point in the future, it won’t be THQ that succeeds. It will be its offspring.

Read more at Gamasutra

Majesco shares enter dangerous territory

Zumba zumbafitFitness publisher Majesco is in danger of having its stock delisted. Editor-at-large Chris Morris examines the 26-year-old company’s precarious place on the stock market.

For the second time this year, a video game publisher is in danger of having its stock delisted.

Following THQ’s rocky start to the year, Zumba Fitness publisher Majesco’s stock is entering the red zone. For the past 25 days, the company’s stock has traded below $1. And unless things change by Dec. 12, that’s going to trigger a response by Nasdaq.

Read more at Gamasutra

Ubisoft’s Guillemot on evolving audiences, Wii U, and possibly buying THQ

Among third-party publishers, you aren’t likely to find a bigger Wii U booster than Ubisoft chairman and CEO Yves Guillemot.

That’s hardly surprising, given his company’s big bet on the system (it has 10 games in the Wii U’s “launch window,” including six day one titles). But even Guillemot has some things he’d like to see Nintendo doing differently.

Specifically: He’s not a big fan of the console’s price.

Read more at GamesIndustry.biz

THQ delays its games, faces uncertain future

Struggling publisher THQ is looking even more vulnerable after the company announced plans Tuesday to push back the release of its three biggest upcoming releases and suspend all earnings guidance for the foreseeable future.

The company also announced it had hired an adviser to help it review its options and find new ways to raise money. Investors were quick to punish the company’s stock, with THQ shares plunging 42 percent Wednesday morning.

Read more at Yahoo! Games