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Author Topic: Bizarre Creations-About to be axed?  (Read 1122 times)
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metallicorphan
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« on: November 16, 2010, 08:00:52 PM »

Looks like Activision are looking for ways to sell off the studio which made Project Gotham Racing and Blur,and apparently 200 staff have been given 3 months notice

http://kotaku.com/5691455/bizarre-devs-took-a-chance-may-get-closedbizarre-devs-took-a-chance-may-get-closed


Quote
Three years after purchasing the developer behind Project Gotham Racing and Geometry Wars, Activision appears to be in the process of deciding how to ditch the studio.

"Over the past three years since our purchase of Bizarre Creations," an Activision spokesperson told Kotaku today, "the fundamentals of the racing genre have changed significantly. Although we made a substantial investment in creating a new IP, Blur, it did not find a commercial audience. Bizarre is a very talented team of developers, however, because of the broader economic factors impacting the market, we are exploring our options regarding the future of the studio, including a potential sale of the business."

Another option would be the studio's closure.

Rumors of the Liverpool-based development studio's imminent closure about this afternoon, with Twitter in particular abuzz with word that Bizarre Creations' owner, Activision, is planning to shut the studio down. Sources close to the studio have informed Develop that some 200 members of the Bizarre Creations staff have been put on three months notice.

Activision purchased Bizarre Creations in 2007. Since the purchase Bizarre has created two titles for the publisher: The well-received racing combat game Blur and it's most recent release, James Bond 007: Blood Stone, which has received mostly average reviews thus far.


some people have suggested that Microsoft should buy them back,lets hope Bungie have a hit on their hands for their next game
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« Reply #1 on: November 16, 2010, 08:18:09 PM »

http://twitter.com/#!/taswell/status/4593477140619264
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metallicorphan
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« Reply #2 on: November 16, 2010, 08:25:43 PM »

http://twitter.com/#!/JonTt (Tell Tale Games Boss)

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JonTt Jon Burton
Sad Day for games developers. Really glad I didn't sell my company to Activision.
3 hours ago  

from my first post,I just remembered Bungie are only in a publishing deal with Activision
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« Reply #3 on: November 16, 2010, 08:57:10 PM »

Considering they put out 4 critically acclaimed Project Gotham games and Blur also ranked in the 80's, they certainly don't deserve this. IMO PGR4 is the most underrated arcade racer released this gen. Unfortunately they seemed to have stepped out of their comfort zone with  007 Blood Stone and it looks to have cost them. I hope they find a way to keep going.
« Last Edit: November 16, 2010, 09:00:29 PM by kronovan » Logged
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« Reply #4 on: November 16, 2010, 10:05:31 PM »

Quote from: kronovan on November 16, 2010, 08:57:10 PM

Considering they put out 4 critically acclaimed Project Gotham games and Blur also ranked in the 80's, they certainly don't deserve this. IMO PGR4 is the most underrated arcade racer released this gen. Unfortunately they seemed to have stepped out of their comfort zone with  007 Blood Stone and it looks to have cost them. I hope they find a way to keep going.

Didn't all of those games sell pretty poorly?  I loved PGR (all of them) but I don't think PGR4 or Blur sold well at all.
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Mithridates
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« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2010, 10:14:14 PM »

Man, I thought Blur was great.  Absolutely loved it.  Too bad it didn't do better for them.
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« Reply #6 on: November 17, 2010, 12:48:14 AM »

Quote from: Mithridates on November 16, 2010, 10:14:14 PM

Man, I thought Blur was great.  Absolutely loved it.  Too bad it didn't do better for them.

Yeah, same here.  I loved Blur and thought they did a great job with the PGR games.  In my opinion none of their games were marketed to sell what they should have.  It will be a real shame to see this studio closed down so soon after selling out to Activision. 
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« Reply #7 on: November 17, 2010, 02:42:10 AM »

The lesson that is sadly reinforced here is that developing excellent, high quality games means absolutely nothing in today's environment.  Developing games that sell a bajillion copies - regardless of quality -  is the only thing that matters anymore. 

frown
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Larraque
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« Reply #8 on: November 17, 2010, 01:44:11 PM »

Quote
The lesson that is sadly reinforced here is that developing excellent, high quality games means absolutely nothing in today's environment.  Developing games that sell a bajillion copies - regardless of quality -  is the only thing that matters anymore. 

You'd think that Activision would have learned (from the oversaturation of the guitar hero franchise) that developing poor quality games is the fastest way to destroy an IP. From the little bit of it that I played, Blur was a fantastic game. I just hadn't gotten around to buying it yet.

It is worth pointing out that Blur had (IMO) a TERRIBLE marketing campaign.
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« Reply #9 on: November 17, 2010, 04:55:43 PM »

I think this also shows that Activision is a fairly useless publisher outside of their genre comfort zone - Action, FPS, and RPG's via Blizzard. This is a similar concern to what I voiced in the PC forums' Valve thread re. Steam - major players in publishing and distribution that aren't diversified across gaming genres is a growing concern for game consumers. It's become even more of an issue since Microsoft's major retreat from game publishing. I doubt Bizarre Creations will be the only high quality dev studio that's fallen come this time next year.
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metallicorphan
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« Reply #10 on: November 17, 2010, 06:12:34 PM »

it didn't help that Activision released the game a week after Split/Second and Modnation racers for Blur

for Bloodstone,its much dumber IMO,they released that Bond game on the same day as Goldeneye remake(also Activision)which admittedly is the more 'famous' of the two...and then couple that one with the fact that Activision released Bloodstone the week before Activisions COD:Black Ops which we all knew would do well(it was actually the Friday before the Tuesday release of Black Ops here in the UK)
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« Reply #11 on: November 17, 2010, 06:36:19 PM »

Rumour:Microsoft(and others)ARE interested

http://www.computerandvideogames.com/article.php?id=276352

Quote
"Multiple parties" including Microsoft are interested in buying troubled PGR and Geometry Wars studio, Bizarre Creations.

That's according to studio insiders who've spoken to trade mag Develop, following Activision's move to put Bizarre up for sale, risking 200 jobs.

One source told Develop this morning that job cuts were highly likely. That was the mood until Activision execs held a second major meeting with staff to discuss the ongoing process.

"That meeting really lifted the mood here, I think, because we've been told that there's multiple parties interested in buying us," the anonymous source said.

"We are still on consultation for ninety days," he added, "but things look much better than they did last night or this morning. Things here are changing at such a quick pace."

The source declined to name the interested parties so not to risk possible deals, but another source at the studio has understood that Microsoft - previously reported to be looking for a PGR5 developer - has already shown an interest, Develop reports.

"Microsoft aren't stupid," he said, "they know we're talented and have spoken to Activision about us."

Go on Microsoft, make us all happy.

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« Reply #12 on: November 17, 2010, 06:36:49 PM »

Quote from: Gratch on November 17, 2010, 02:42:10 AM

The lesson that is sadly reinforced here is that developing excellent, high quality games means absolutely nothing in today's environment.  Developing games that sell a bajillion copies - regardless of quality -  is the only thing that matters anymore.  

Anything else mattered before?
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kronovan
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« Reply #13 on: November 17, 2010, 07:33:19 PM »

Quote from: metallicorphan on November 17, 2010, 06:36:19 PM

Rumour:Microsoft(and others)ARE interested

http://www.computerandvideogames.com/article.php?id=276352

Quote
"Multiple parties" including Microsoft are interested in buying troubled PGR and Geometry Wars studio, Bizarre Creations.

That's according to studio insiders who've spoken to trade mag Develop, following Activision's move to put Bizarre up for sale, risking 200 jobs.

One source told Develop this morning that job cuts were highly likely. That was the mood until Activision execs held a second major meeting with staff to discuss the ongoing process.

"That meeting really lifted the mood here, I think, because we've been told that there's multiple parties interested in buying us," the anonymous source said.

"We are still on consultation for ninety days," he added, "but things look much better than they did last night or this morning. Things here are changing at such a quick pace."

The source declined to name the interested parties so not to risk possible deals, but another source at the studio has understood that Microsoft - previously reported to be looking for a PGR5 developer - has already shown an interest, Develop reports.

"Microsoft aren't stupid," he said, "they know we're talented and have spoken to Activision about us."

Go on Microsoft, make us all happy.

Oh man, hope that's true - I'd love to see what Bizarre could do with a PGR5. Lets just hope that MS is a bit smarter with the marketing this time.
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CeeKay
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« Reply #14 on: January 19, 2011, 03:37:09 PM »

looks like they couldn't find any buyers for the studio.
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« Reply #15 on: January 19, 2011, 07:20:47 PM »

Quote from: CeeKay on January 19, 2011, 03:37:09 PM


This is a bummer, man.  Thats...that's a bummer.
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« Reply #16 on: January 20, 2011, 04:34:08 AM »

Yup, very dissapointing to hear that. frown  If it's come to this, I'm suprised someone didn't pull an EA-Looking Glass Studios on them; acquire them then shut them down anyways and pocket the IP's. Honestly, I'd rather have almost any other Publisher than Activision hold those IP's.
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« Reply #17 on: February 14, 2011, 08:03:34 PM »

not looking good for the Liverpool based Studio,the studio behind Project Gotham Racing and Blur is to close this Friday as it has failed to find a buyer,i am hoping for a last minute jump in by Microsoft,and they can fall in love again

it would be a shame for the devs to close,they have had some good games out
copied and pasted from wiki page in the spoilers
Spoiler for Hiden:
    * The Killing Game Show / Fatal Rewind — Amiga (1990), Atari ST (1990), Mega Drive (1991)
    * Wiz 'n' Liz — Amiga, Mega Drive (1993)
    * Formula One — PlayStation, PC (1996)
    * Formula 1 97 / Formula One: Championship Edition — PlayStation, PC (1997)
    * Metropolis Street Racer — Dreamcast (2000)
    * Fur Fighters — Dreamcast, PC (2000)
    * Fur Fighters: Viggo's Revenge — PlayStation 2 (2001)
    * Project Gotham Racing — Xbox (2001)
    * Treasure Planet — PlayStation 2, Game Boy Advance (2002)
    * Project Gotham Racing 2 — Xbox (2003)
    * Project Gotham Racing 3 — Xbox 360 (2005)
    * Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved — Xbox Live Arcade (2005), Windows Vista (2007), Windows XP (via Steam) (2007)
    * Boom Boom Rocket — Xbox Live Arcade (2007)
    * Project Gotham Racing 4 - Xbox 360 (2007)
    * Geometry Wars: Galaxies - Nintendo DS, Wii (2007)
    * The Club — Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC (2008)
    * Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved 2 — Xbox Live Arcade (2008)
    * Geometry Wars: Touch - iOS4 (via iTunes App Store) (2010)
    * Blur - Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC (2010)
    * James Bond 007: Blood Stone - Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, PC (2010)[5][6]

CVG


Quote
Bizarre Creations will close its doors this Friday, February 18, Develop reports.

The future of the Liverpool-based company, which was formed in 1994, has been hanging in the balance since November last year when owner Activision told CVG it was looking at options for the studio.

Last month, Activision recommended Bizarre be closed as it hadn't been able to find a buyer for the Blur developer.

CVG wishes all the best to those affected by the closure.

s'pose i ought to start slagging off Activision again ..*sigh*

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« Reply #18 on: February 18, 2011, 11:54:38 AM »

well,today is the day.....seems Microsoft is not coming to the rescue as i hoped

Bizarre Creations 1994-2011

the link includes a nice farewell video
CVG

PGR4 is my favourite arcade racer this gen,and its a shame that they wont be doing PGR5,maybe the new devs for the game will keep some of that Bizarre magic

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« Reply #19 on: February 18, 2011, 03:18:38 PM »

Quote from: metallicorphan on February 18, 2011, 11:54:38 AM

PGR4 is my favourite arcade racer this gen,and its a shame that they wont be doing PGR5,maybe the new devs for the game will keep some of that Bizarre magic

yeah, PR_GMR is going to be bummed too, he named himself after tha games afterall  icon_wink
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« Reply #20 on: February 25, 2011, 11:19:07 AM »

most of the Ex-Bizzare guys have now formed Lucid Games

http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2011-02-25-ex-bizarre-devs-form-lucid-games


Quote
Pete Wallace, a former Bizarre senior manager and now Lucid managing director, said: "With the great history of Bizarre behind us, we are proud to be part of Lucid and are committed to the UK game development community.

"We plan to build a studio which encourages open communication with its partners, customers and other developers."

Lucid is already talking to several publishers regarding potential projects, it said.

hopefully a certain publisher will get the cold shoulder  Tongue
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« Reply #21 on: February 25, 2011, 02:03:10 PM »

Quote from: CeeKay on February 18, 2011, 03:18:38 PM

yeah, PR_GMR is going to be bummed too, he named himself after tha games afterall  icon_wink

Really? I always thought it was Power Gamer
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« Reply #22 on: February 25, 2011, 04:17:39 PM »

Quote from: metallicorphan on February 25, 2011, 11:19:07 AM

most of the Ex-Bizzare guys have now formed Lucid Games

http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2011-02-25-ex-bizarre-devs-form-lucid-games


Quote
Pete Wallace, a former Bizarre senior manager and now Lucid managing director, said: "With the great history of Bizarre behind us, we are proud to be part of Lucid and are committed to the UK game development community.

"We plan to build a studio which encourages open communication with its partners, customers and other developers."

Lucid is already talking to several publishers regarding potential projects, it said.

hopefully a certain publisher will get the cold shoulder  Tongue

Money is money. I wonder if they sold their old IP to themselves. smile
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« Reply #23 on: April 06, 2011, 05:28:52 PM »

ex-staff speaks with Edge magazine[/rul].  There is one claim that Activision offered to let them buy themselves back, but they felt a third party buyer would work better.
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