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Author Topic: 38 Studios/Big Huge Games Problems  (Read 2356 times)
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metallicorphan
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« on: May 24, 2012, 10:14:13 PM »

Its been making headlines for the past few weeks,that Kingdoms Of Amalur studio are in a lot of trouble

First off,they have been having trouble paying back a loan and missed a payment,and also could not pay their employees
WCVB

then they managed to pay the loan payment(i think i heard their next one was due November)

then it was reported that studio Execs had left
Eurogamer


Now unfortunately,its being reported that 38 Studios have laid off all their staff and Big Huge Games has now closed
http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2012-05-24-amalur-developer-38-studios-lays-off-all-staff-report

Quote
Embattled Kingdoms of Amalur developer 38 Studios is in its death throes, according to a Polygon report.

All of staff have apparently been laid off today, so say sources close to the Rhode Island-based outfit.

A separate Kotaku piece claims subsidiary Big Huge Games has also closed its doors. The Maryland studio, which co-developed EA-published RPG Amalur, was bought by former pro-baseballer Curt Schilling's 38 Studios outfit back in 2009.

Big Huge's past credits included 2003 RTS Rise of Nations and Age of Empires 3: The Asian Dynasties.

38 has been limping along for the past few weeks now, struggling to pay back s government loan and failing to pay staff. As a show of strength, it issued a trailer for planned Amalur MMO Project Copernicus earlier this week (see below), however, it appears that was not enough to keep the wolves from the door.

We're chasing official confirmation now.



I hope they can find a solution to their problems,as i for one really enjoyed Kingdoms of Amalur

It does not mention anything else about the recently shown off MMO with the working title of Project Copernicus,which being a MMO that are not cheap you would expect them to announce its scrapping before the announcement of laying people off,i would of thought anyway and not show it off when having money problems(a week away from laying everyone off)...but then again,maybe they were trying to cut deals at the time,and showing games of under development may of been a good thing for them

EDIT:
there has been an update on Kotaku from an ex-employee

Quote
   38 Studios just laid off its entire staff, both Providence and BHG studios are being shuttered.

    We have not received a paycheck since April 30th.

    On May 15th, we found out we were not getting paid when our checks did not hit our accounts.

    Our medical insurance runs out tonight at midnight.

    We found this out when an employee's pregnant wife was told by her doctor, this was on Tuesday 22nd May this week.

    The company has not communicated anything concrete to the team throughout this process, leaving team members to figure out insurance stop-gaps (where people could afford it), etc. on their own.


and here is the copy of the lay off letter
Quote
   The Company is experiencing an economic downturn. To avoid further losses and possibility of retrenchment, the Company has decided that a companywide lay off is absolutely necessary.

    These layoffs are non-voluntary and non-disciplinary.

    This is your official notice of lay off, effective today, Thursday, May 24th, 2012.

nice(!) and to the point isn't,no thanks for your contributions or thanks for taking one for the team and not being paid for a month etc icon_confused
« Last Edit: May 24, 2012, 10:29:20 PM by metallicorphan » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2012, 10:40:14 PM »

Polygon is reporting on this too:

Quote from: Polygon
Official confirmation is slow in coming, likely due to the complete closure of the company, but at least one former employee of Big Huge Games, a subsidiary of 38 Studios, took to Twitter to lament the company's passing.

"Big Huge Games was home for my wife and me for our adult lives so far," wrote Colin Campbell, lead world designer at Big Huge Games. "I'll miss it terribly, but so proud. Good night and good luck."


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« Reply #2 on: May 25, 2012, 03:07:22 AM »

I feel for all of the people that found out they just lost their jobs via a slip of paper.  I'm not sure what the employment laws are in Rhode Island, but in most states all of those employees are due the wages they worked since April 30th.  Their owners and senior leadership really created a cluster f**k that goes beyond just their own company.  What a mess.
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« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2012, 03:26:39 AM »

curt should at least step in and pay them their wages.  the situation is bad enough as it is, but now people are likely backed up on bills. 
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« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2012, 05:03:34 AM »

This is hardly surprising. They took A LOT of money in the form of a loan from the state of RI, and needed something along the lines of CoD sales to repay it.

If they had done half the world with twice the story in Amalur I bet they could have had a solid hit on their hands. Dark Souls and Dragons Dogma (which I purchased) have proven that people crave action rpg's. I'm certainly getting my money out of both of them, which is something I really didn't with Amalur (I rented it and didn't feel it was worth my money to purchase)

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« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2012, 05:42:44 AM »

I really don't think it was KOA that doomed them.  It was having such a HUGE staff working simultaneously on Project Copernicus.  Instead of a 300 employee team, they should have stayed in the 80's and worked on one game at a time, built a following and some success and THEN went for the big MMO.  AAA MMO's are very costly.  BIG mistake trying to start off the company making one.
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« Reply #6 on: May 25, 2012, 06:51:59 AM »

Quote from: StitchJones on May 25, 2012, 05:42:44 AM

I really don't think it was KOA that doomed them.  It was having such a HUGE staff working simultaneously on Project Copernicus.  Instead of a 300 employee team, they should have stayed in the 80's and worked on one game at a time, built a following and some success and THEN went for the big MMO.  AAA MMO's are very costly.  BIG mistake trying to start off the company making one.

38 Studios was founded to make the MMO, they only bought Big Huge Games a couple years ago to re-work their action RPG into a game in the same universe. 
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« Reply #7 on: May 25, 2012, 07:01:13 AM »

I wonder what will happen with the Amalur IP.  It should be worth quite a bit, given that the game sold 1.2 million copies and generated a lot of buzz.  Hopefully, they can sell the IP and the Copernicus assets to someone who can remake it into a single-player sequel to Reckoning.
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« Reply #8 on: May 25, 2012, 01:01:26 PM »

Quote from: EngineNo9 on May 25, 2012, 06:51:59 AM

Quote from: StitchJones on May 25, 2012, 05:42:44 AM

I really don't think it was KOA that doomed them.  It was having such a HUGE staff working simultaneously on Project Copernicus.  Instead of a 300 employee team, they should have stayed in the 80's and worked on one game at a time, built a following and some success and THEN went for the big MMO.  AAA MMO's are very costly.  BIG mistake trying to start off the company making one.

38 Studios was founded to make the MMO, they only bought Big Huge Games a couple years ago to re-work their action RPG into a game in the same universe. 

Then they had flawed logic from the get go.  They burned through all of that taxpayer money and all we saw were a couple screenshots and some flyover video.
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« Reply #9 on: May 25, 2012, 01:20:54 PM »

Quote from: StitchJones on May 25, 2012, 01:01:26 PM

Quote from: EngineNo9 on May 25, 2012, 06:51:59 AM

Quote from: StitchJones on May 25, 2012, 05:42:44 AM

I really don't think it was KOA that doomed them.  It was having such a HUGE staff working simultaneously on Project Copernicus.  Instead of a 300 employee team, they should have stayed in the 80's and worked on one game at a time, built a following and some success and THEN went for the big MMO.  AAA MMO's are very costly.  BIG mistake trying to start off the company making one.

38 Studios was founded to make the MMO, they only bought Big Huge Games a couple years ago to re-work their action RPG into a game in the same universe. 

Then they had flawed logic from the get go.  They burned through all of that taxpayer money and all we saw were a couple screenshots and some flyover video.

The problem was that there were stipulations with the loan that they had to hire x number of people by x time. It was a stupid loan that paid no attention to proper planning for the game. Both parties are at fault for not realizing this.
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« Reply #10 on: May 25, 2012, 02:44:59 PM »

how was it a bad loan?  somewhere a group of private investors is reaping enormous gains from a risk they never had to take because they paid a bunch of politicians to force other people to cough up cash for the bills.  im sure, for the price of a few luxury seats at fenway and dinners out around town, they are now guaranteed somewhere north of $110 million dollars after interest for a business venture that completely and utterly failed.

that sounds like the best kind of loan, from the perspective of the ones issuing it.  now for the ones forced into guaranteeing it on the other hand...
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« Reply #11 on: May 26, 2012, 12:22:55 AM »

It gets worse!!


Quote
Yesterday, hundreds of staff from the beleaguered studio behind Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning were laid off. Today, if the latest reports are to be believed, things have got much, much worse.

Apparently, some of the employees from ex-baseball star Curt Schilling’s 38 Studios have been informed by banks that the homes they thought had been sold to the company have remained in their name.

That means that not only have they lost their job, they’re also unknowingly defaulting on a mortgage they were assured they no longer had. Unpaid mortgages can lead to personal bankruptcy and homelessness.


It’s being speculated that those involved with 38 Studios’ relocation program are the victims. While moving from Massachusetts to Rhode Island, 38 Studios offered to buy their employee’s old homes to make the process of relocation a little quicker and easier. Except it would seem that didn’t happen.

Or, at least, it didn’t happen in the way that employees had been led to believe. Instead it’s being suggested that 38 Studios did not buy the homes from those employees at all.

While much of the story is yet to be fleshed out, Polygon are claiming that “several sources” have confirmed that they’ve received massages from their banks asking why their old mortgages have not been payed.

Further questions have been raised regarding the legality of 38 Studios’ use of state money. The company has received significant investment from Rhode Island itself, money that you are not legally allowed to spend on financing homes or paying mortgages.

38 Studios are also facing accusations from Gov. Lincoln Chafee that because they didn’t alert the state ahead of time about the company’s 379 layoffs, the company is once more in default on the loan agreement with Rhode Island.

Whatever the outcome, expect this story to run for some time. It seems increasingly likely that alongside the continuing case between West/Zampella and Activision, this year’s biggest headlines will be more about courts than consoles.
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« Reply #12 on: May 26, 2012, 02:35:16 AM »

Yep. The whole thing is reading more and more like a "The Producers" style scam.

It's becoming pretty clear that this wasn't just misguided execs, but rather some real malice put into this from some people intent on grabbing the money or embezzling then running the studio into the ground to hide it.

Thankfully, verbal agreements stand, so those people could find a way to get out of those mortages, probably by jumping in on a class action from other employees. But all that will still take backseat to all the other money issues.

What really sucks is that Amalur was a decent game, I'm probably going to purchase it when it drops a little more in price. I was looking forward to more from that studio now that they had gotten more experience.
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« Reply #13 on: May 26, 2012, 04:39:37 AM »

I can't believe they were in talks to potentially buy another studio 6 months ago.  They were clearly in no position to do so and this is just ridiculous.
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« Reply #14 on: May 26, 2012, 06:00:30 AM »

I could certainly be better with money, but holy shit storm..
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« Reply #15 on: May 29, 2012, 09:30:33 AM »

KoA 2 was in development


Quote
Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning 2 was in development at Big Huge Games, before the recent closure of parent company 38 Studios, it has been revealed.

The design bullet points for the project were improved graphics, no loading screens, expanded and improved combat animations, a more linear quest and greater effect on the world by players.

That’s according to sources close to the project at Big Huge Games. Apparently, despite Reckoningnselling 1.2 million copies in under 90 days, EA were not interested in a sequel. Big Huge Games were attempting to find another publisher.

Following the fall of Big Huge Games’ parent company 38 Studios, however, it’s unlikely that the project will ever see the light of day. Not as a Kingdoms of Amalur title, anyway.

It is possible, however, that the assets may be picked up by another publisher and integrated into a different game. Reckoning was originally planned as an RPG called Ascendant for THQ, before it was decided that the RPG would best suit the Amalur universe. That trick could be repeated and Reckoning 2 could resurface as a different title.

The source also cleared up a misconception about the funding of Reckoning, saying, "Reckoning was developed with EA publishing money, NOT Rhode Island tax dollars... It had nothing to do with the $50 million dollars from RI. That money went directly to the MMO project [Copernicus]."
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« Reply #16 on: May 29, 2012, 11:19:59 AM »

Quote from: metallicorphan on May 29, 2012, 09:30:33 AM

KoA 2 was in development


Quote
Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning 2 was in development at Big Huge Games, before the recent closure of parent company 38 Studios, it has been revealed.

The design bullet points for the project were improved graphics, no loading screens, expanded and improved combat animations, a more linear quest and greater effect on the world by players.

That’s according to sources close to the project at Big Huge Games. Apparently, despite Reckoningnselling 1.2 million copies in under 90 days, EA were not interested in a sequel. Big Huge Games were attempting to find another publisher.

Following the fall of Big Huge Games’ parent company 38 Studios, however, it’s unlikely that the project will ever see the light of day. Not as a Kingdoms of Amalur title, anyway.

It is possible, however, that the assets may be picked up by another publisher and integrated into a different game. Reckoning was originally planned as an RPG called Ascendant for THQ, before it was decided that the RPG would best suit the Amalur universe. That trick could be repeated and Reckoning 2 could resurface as a different title.

The source also cleared up a misconception about the funding of Reckoning, saying, "Reckoning was developed with EA publishing money, NOT Rhode Island tax dollars... It had nothing to do with the $50 million dollars from RI. That money went directly to the MMO project [Copernicus]."

Sonafabitch. We'll never see a difficulty patch, and now metallicorphan posts this just to kick me in the groin while I'm already down....

And F! Electronic Arts for passing on sequel to a game that sold 1.2 million units in less than three months.
« Last Edit: May 29, 2012, 11:21:49 AM by Dante Rising » Logged
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« Reply #17 on: May 29, 2012, 02:15:28 PM »

I think they passed on the studio's overall troubles. It's likely EA had more information than us and saw the writing on the wall.

I mean, honestly, the single player version of an MMO, that costs even more money to make, and isn't done yet only sells 1.2 copies? Then, the studio has already burned through large amounts of money?

That's a sure sign that something is seriously wrong.

If 38 Studios had operated with a much smaller team on a smaller budget, then produced KoA1 for a fraction of the cost (and probably a smaller, more condensed world), then 1.2 million sold would be a good number. But they were running in the red.
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« Reply #18 on: May 29, 2012, 03:33:07 PM »

Could Curt Schilling lose his $50mil personal fortune?

Quote
Curt Schilling has admitted his personal $50 million baseball fortune may be wiped out after investing it in a Rhode Island studio that last week buckled under its own debt.

Days since the former Phillies pitcher was forced to lay off about 300 staff at 38 Studios, as well as axe another 100 at Baltimore subsidiary Big Huge Games, Schilling has broken his silence on the matter and blamed state officials for meddling.

In particular he criticised Rhode Island governor Lincoln Chafee for delivering "devastating" public comments on the health of 38 Studios, and said such rhetoric had "scared off private investors".

In May, Chafee claimed that Rhode Island was trying to keep 38 Studios "solvent" - a claim which, according to Schilling, scared off an unnamed publisher which resulted in the loss of $35 million in investment.

Now the empty studio is owned by the state with about $112 million to repay in loans and interest.

In 2011, Schilling's studio moved to Rhode Island as part of a complex $75 million taxpayer-backed bonds deal.
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« Reply #19 on: May 29, 2012, 03:46:06 PM »

Quote from: Turtle on May 29, 2012, 02:15:28 PM

I mean, honestly, the single player version of an MMO, that costs even more money to make, and isn't done yet only sells 1.2 copies? Then, the studio has already burned through large amounts of money?

There is nothing "only" about selling more than a million copies of a game. The only exceptions are for very established studios with recognizable brands. This was neither. By launching a brand new IP from an unknown company and expecting sales of at least 3 million, these guys really shot themselves in the foot. A million sales would be considered a great success for almost any other game (and was hailed as such for this game in the media). Someone fucked up management for this game. The red lights should have been blinking very early.

Then again, I'm of the opinion that any time someone suggests making an MMO, red lights should be flashing everywhere. That's a fine way to lose tons of money.
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« Reply #20 on: May 29, 2012, 04:20:36 PM »

What a leadership disaster.  Not just 1 business, but 2 businesses are done now...with hundreds of people and their families impacted.  The first thing their leadership does is blame other people for their failure? 
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« Reply #21 on: June 02, 2012, 05:44:58 PM »

getting a bit worse/weird now,apparently Curt Schilling tried to pay in gold pieces  icon_biggrin

Kotaku

Quote
Curt Schilling, the studio's founder, posted $5 million in actual gold coins to secure a loan to stabilize the company back in February.

That's right. One-ounce gold pieces—"some 200 pounds of South African Krugerrands, Canadian Maple Leafs and American Eagles," says the Globe, according to financial documents filed in Massachusetts.
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« Reply #22 on: June 04, 2012, 12:45:47 AM »

Now it gets better

Quote
Epic Games is set to save team members from troubled 38 Studios' Big Huge Games, who were responsible for Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, to form a new Epic studio.

Epic boss Mike Capps said in a blog post that the move to save Big Huge "very clearly fits with our company values".

Before its able to find a proper office for the studio, Big Huge refugees will be drafted in to Epic's headquarters in Cary, NC to work as contractors, Capps said.

"On Wednesday, the ex-BHG leadership team contacted us. They wanted to start a new company and keep together some of the key talent displaced by the layoff, and hoped that they could use an Epic IP as a starting point for a new game," the Epic boss wrote.

"We loved that they all wanted to keep working together, but it was pretty clear they'd have trouble building a demo and securing funding before their personal savings ran out.

"In one of life's coincidences, Epic's directors had spent the morning discussing how we'd love to build even more successful projects with our growing team, but that we'd need a dramatic infusion of top talent to do so. Which, we all knew, was impossible.

"So now we're planning to start an impossible studio in Baltimore."

Capps added that he's unsure at this point how many team members Epic will hire, or what they'll be working on.

"The way we see it, there's been a big storm in Baltimore, and we're taking in a few of the refugees - as are the awesome folks at Zynga East, Zenimax Online, and other southeastern studios. Epic's in a situation where we can do this, and it very clearly fits with our company values, so we're going to give it a whirl."
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« Reply #23 on: June 04, 2012, 01:14:04 AM »

Epic also just won their case against Silicon Knights, so things are looking pretty good for them. I mean, besides the whole thing where their engine owns the middle-ware market.
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« Reply #24 on: June 04, 2012, 01:16:31 AM »

The story from the inside. Puts things in a different light...
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« Reply #25 on: June 07, 2012, 05:56:09 PM »

Quote
38 Studios has declared bankruptcy, according to a company spokesman.

The news comes Thursday as the head of the Rhode Island State Police tells The Providence Journal that state and federal authorities have launched an investigation into Curt Schilling's video-game company.

According to statement to The Journal from 38 Studios, "This action comes after several weeks when the company has reviewed, considered and received the recommendations and advice with respect to potential avenues for relief that are currently available. After ongoing negotiations with the State of Rhode Island and potential investors and other interested parties, the Company has been unable to find a solution to the current stalemate."

Meanwhile, Col. Steven G. O'Donnell, superintendent of the Rhode Island State Police, says that his agency, the FBI, the U.S. Attorney's office and the Rhode Island attorney general "are working together to investigate activities that have recently come to light at 38 Studios."

http://news.providencejournal.com/breaking-news/2012/06/38-studios-decl.html
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« Reply #26 on: June 07, 2012, 06:06:46 PM »

Meant to post this a couple of days ago:

Epic Games seems to be stepping up.


Quote
Our heart goes out to the people affected by the unfortunate events surrounding 38 Studios and its subsidiary in Baltimore, Big Huge Games.  Through it all, the team stayed together in a way that’s been really heartwarming to see.  The team kept working, hoping that there’d be a way to secure last-minute funding and save the company.  People brought extra food into the office to help those unable to pay their bills.  And last week, in bittersweet irony, Big Huge Games was named to Game Developer’s Top 30 studios in the world list.
 
You may be wondering why I’m writing all this – and it’s because Epic is going to do something to help them, and we want people to understand why we think it’s the right thing to do.
 
On Wednesday, the ex-BHG leadership team contacted us.  They wanted to start a new company and keep together some of the key talent displaced by the layoff, and hoped that they could use an Epic IP as a starting point for a new game.  We loved that they all wanted to keep working together, but it was pretty clear they’d have trouble building a demo and securing funding before their personal savings ran out.
 
In one of life’s coincidences, Epic’s directors had spent the morning discussing how we’d love to build even more successful projects with our growing team, but that we’d need a dramatic infusion of top talent to do so.  Which, we all knew, was impossible.
 
So now we’re planning to start an impossible studio in Baltimore. 

It’ll take a while to find space, set up desks and PCs, purchase sufficient Nerf weaponry and Dr. Pepper, etc.  But some of these folks have been going too long without a paycheck to wait for that.  So, as soon as we can, we’re going to try to get people working down here at Epic headquarters in Cary, NC as contractors.
 
There’s a million things to work out.  How many of the team can we hire?  What will it be called?  What will they be working on?  We don’t know all the answers yet.  Please give us some time to figure it out; we hope to have more to share soon.
 
The way we see it, there’s been a big storm in Baltimore, and we’re taking in a few of the refugees — as are the awesome folks at Zynga East, Zenimax Online, and other southeastern studios.  Epic’s in a situation where we can do this, and it very clearly fits with our company values, so we’re going to give it a whirl.
 
Dr. Michael Capps
 
President, Epic Games
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« Reply #27 on: June 07, 2012, 06:34:20 PM »

Good on Epic.
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« Reply #28 on: June 07, 2012, 06:55:45 PM »

Quote from: Laner on June 07, 2012, 06:34:20 PM

Good on Epic.
Also good on the BHG leaders for proactively reaching out to Epic leadership to try and find a place for their people to land safely.  If I were an employee (former employee?) of BHG, I'd be very happy about that.   
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« Reply #29 on: June 07, 2012, 07:53:34 PM »

Quote from: Roguetad on June 07, 2012, 06:55:45 PM

Quote from: Laner on June 07, 2012, 06:34:20 PM

Good on Epic.
Also good on the BHG leaders for proactively reaching out to Epic leadership to try and find a place for their people to land safely.  If I were an employee (former employee?) of BHG, I'd be very happy about that.   

Nice to see people step up and help when they can.
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« Reply #30 on: June 09, 2012, 09:27:50 PM »

http://www.edge-online.com/news/38-studios-files-bankruptcy

$150 million to over 1000 creditors. Granted most is to Rhode Island but thats insane.
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« Reply #31 on: June 09, 2012, 10:17:03 PM »

Quote from: Jumangi on June 09, 2012, 09:27:50 PM

http://www.edge-online.com/news/38-studios-files-bankruptcy

$150 million to over 1000 creditors. Granted most is to Rhode Island but thats insane.

Talk about living/ creating above and beyond your means...
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« Reply #32 on: August 09, 2012, 05:56:30 PM »

Rhode Island now owns it all:

Quote
As the saga surrounding the financial difficulties and collapse of Rhode Island-based 38 Studios comes to a close, Rhode Island's Economic Development Corp has taken possession of all of 38 Studios' assets, and will now look to sell them.

The studio, founded by former pro baseball star Curt Shilling, filed for bankruptcy earlier this year after receiving heavy funding from the state of Rhode Island as part of an economic development plan for the state. Due to the collapse, the state has now lost out on millions in taxpayer-backed bonds.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Mary Walrath has granted the state and the Bank of New York Mellon Trust Co. possession of all 38 Studios assets, including the video game intellectual property from Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning and in-development MMORPG Copernicus. The state will now be looking to sell these assets to pay back as much of the loan as it can, reports Bloomberg.

A spokesperson for the state said that it was necessary to take this action, as "all or substantially all of the intellectual property could be irretrievably lost" when the trustee company appointed to dismantle the company begins abandoning 38 Studios property.
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« Reply #33 on: October 23, 2012, 03:15:13 AM »

PDF file of the assets being auctioned off tomorrow.
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« Reply #34 on: October 23, 2012, 03:21:14 AM »

There's some random stuff in there... but including a lot of nice computers.
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« Reply #35 on: October 23, 2012, 04:44:45 AM »

I'm surprised employees didn't run off with some of those smaller items.
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« Reply #36 on: October 23, 2012, 05:08:34 AM »

I suspect that's because they might have been locked out of the building before they even heard they were being laid off, then everything got carted away to be cataloged for sale.
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« Reply #37 on: February 09, 2013, 06:06:52 AM »

Quote from: Bullwinkle on June 07, 2012, 06:06:46 PM

Meant to post this a couple of days ago:

Epic Games seems to be stepping up.


Quote
Our heart goes out to the people affected by the unfortunate events surrounding 38 Studios and its subsidiary in Baltimore, Big Huge Games.  Through it all, the team stayed together in a way that’s been really heartwarming to see.  The team kept working, hoping that there’d be a way to secure last-minute funding and save the company.  People brought extra food into the office to help those unable to pay their bills.  And last week, in bittersweet irony, Big Huge Games was named to Game Developer’s Top 30 studios in the world list.
 
You may be wondering why I’m writing all this – and it’s because Epic is going to do something to help them, and we want people to understand why we think it’s the right thing to do.
 
On Wednesday, the ex-BHG leadership team contacted us.  They wanted to start a new company and keep together some of the key talent displaced by the layoff, and hoped that they could use an Epic IP as a starting point for a new game.  We loved that they all wanted to keep working together, but it was pretty clear they’d have trouble building a demo and securing funding before their personal savings ran out.
 
In one of life’s coincidences, Epic’s directors had spent the morning discussing how we’d love to build even more successful projects with our growing team, but that we’d need a dramatic infusion of top talent to do so.  Which, we all knew, was impossible.
 
So now we’re planning to start an impossible studio in Baltimore. 

It’ll take a while to find space, set up desks and PCs, purchase sufficient Nerf weaponry and Dr. Pepper, etc.  But some of these folks have been going too long without a paycheck to wait for that.  So, as soon as we can, we’re going to try to get people working down here at Epic headquarters in Cary, NC as contractors.
 
There’s a million things to work out.  How many of the team can we hire?  What will it be called?  What will they be working on?  We don’t know all the answers yet.  Please give us some time to figure it out; we hope to have more to share soon.
 
The way we see it, there’s been a big storm in Baltimore, and we’re taking in a few of the refugees — as are the awesome folks at Zynga East, Zenimax Online, and other southeastern studios.  Epic’s in a situation where we can do this, and it very clearly fits with our company values, so we’re going to give it a whirl.
 
Dr. Michael Capps
 
President, Epic Games

And then Epic closed them 6 months later.   icon_mad
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« Reply #38 on: February 09, 2013, 07:03:12 AM »

Sad.
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« Reply #39 on: February 09, 2013, 03:29:06 PM »

Boo.
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