In an update of Saturday’s story, where news broke over Twitter suggesting that THQ had allegedly cancelled its entire 2014 lineup – their including Warhammer 40,000: Dark Millennium MMO – the publisher has responded today with a statement that sheds further light on the future of the company. It seems that the rumors of mass cancellation are not true. Regarding Vigil’s Warhammer MMO, the company has yet to make a decision.
Rather than shelving it, it looks as if THQ is dramatically changing its 2014 lineup to serve more profitable markets, most notably decreasing the output of casual software in favor of ‘high-quality core games’.
Part of their statement reads:
As part of the ongoing review of our business, we have made decisions to ensure that the company is strategically addressing the most attractive markets. As we have previously announced, we have dramatically reduced our commitment to the kids’ boxed games sector which leads to a significantly more focused release schedule moving forward. Our slate for calendar 2012 and beyond is focused on high-quality core games and continues to build our digital platform and business. We are excited for our pipeline of original and high-quality content along with our relationships with some of the best talent in the industry.
Rumors over the company selling itself to ‘Asian firms’ remain unaddressed, as are the troubles regarding a failed Disney IP. 2011 was not an easy year for THQ, who had to shut down five of its development teams. In addition, its much hyped project, the uDraw, generated disappointing sale figures across all platforms. It wasn’t all bad however, as the statement goes on to explain:
…We are thrilled with the great performance of Saints Row: The Third, which on a like for like period in North America has tripled in sell-through from Saints Row 2. In addition, WWE ’12’s worldwide sell-through sales are up almost 40% year-over-year for the same sales period with fewer platforms. According to NPD, for the month of December and the 2011 year, THQ was the #5 publisher overall, #4 third party, with reported sell through growing over 18% in a market that was down almost 6%.
Along with titles such as Darksiders 2, Metro: Last Light and the recently announced South Park game, it seems that we still have a lot to look forward to from THQ. There is also the rumored sequel to Homefront currently being made by CryTek UK and Guillermo Del Toro’s project inSANE.
On the other hand, this does feel more like a ‘desperate times call for desperate measures’ kind of reaction.