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THQ ends MX vs. ATV, closes studios as part of 'strategic realignment'

THQ is abandoning its MX vs. ATV series, shuttering two Australian studios and axing a development team at its Phoenix, Arizona office as part of an ongoing 'strategic realignment' designed to distance the company from kiddie games and licensed fare, and refocus its efforts on homemade franchises with mass-market appeal.

“With this realignment, we are narrowing our focus to high-quality owned IP with broad appeal that can be leveraged across multiple platforms, and to work with the best talent in the industry,” said Brian Farrell, President and CEO of THQ in last night's statement, continuing, “By right-sizing our internal development capacities for our console portfolio, our five internal studios are focused on delivering high-quality games with talented teams driving the execution of those titles to market.”

Farrell explained these most recent actions are part of THQ's larger goal to capture a more lucrative demographic, adding, “We are making shifts to reduce movie-based and licensed kids’ video games in our portfolio, which underscores our strategy to move away from games that will not generate strong profits in the future...We will continue to evaluate our capital and resources to concentrate on fast growing digital business initiatives such as social games, mobile and tablet-based digital entertainment.”

The studio closures will affect over 200 employees, all of which THQ said are eligible to apply for jobs at any of the company's global offices. GR wishes the displaced THQ staffers all the best in their quest for re-employment.

Aug 10, 2011

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9 comments

  • IceBlueKirby - August 13, 2011 9:06 p.m.

    I'd care about this if MX/ATV Reflex didn't suck. But it did, so I'll be happy playing Unleashed. Or Untamed. Either one, really. The only reason I care that THQ even exists at this point is because they're publishing Saints Row: The Third.
  • LTS - August 12, 2011 1:18 a.m.

    "distance the company from kiddie games and licensed fare" So he WWE franchise is in jeopardy?
  • Spybreak8 - August 11, 2011 3:05 a.m.

    I enjoyed MX Vs ATV Unleashed a while ago but yeah I'm not going to buy the title over and over again. Seems like their new pricing method didn't pan out lol.
  • TruckThunders - August 11, 2011 1:15 a.m.

    More wrestling, right? Maybe a WWE FPS? Can't wait to see what they do next.
  • PanzerDSS - August 10, 2011 7:44 p.m.

    THQ circles the drain?
  • FoxdenRacing - August 10, 2011 7:24 p.m.

    I really hope this downturn in the industry ends soon...I'm running out of 40s to pour for fallen studios creating the enjoyment to keep my hobby alive. This is THQ's way of saying 'Huh. Spending millions for the rights to use a famous brand doesn't guarantee sales', 'Shit, shit, we're losing money hand over fist', and a suspected 'Leveraging isn't working without big hits [the practice of some games being permitted to turn a loss because the mega-hits will even things out]' combined with 'We're jealous of CoD'. It's a shame to see MX vs ATV go...despite a feel that couldn't quite make up its mind between full-on arcade and pseudo-sim, it was a fun, lighthearted premise that needed refined and supported, not stuck flying under the radar and then ditched. Another great series lost to the 'ZOMG everything has to be really, really REAL' craze. If I wanted reality that badly, I'd go outside. Give me ways to go over the top, embellish, or go to places that don't exist, times I'm not alive for any day.
  • TheoneandonlyPym - August 10, 2011 7:15 p.m.

    It sounds like they are making games for just money and nothing else. But in a way it's good they're moving away from movie games like they used to do. They just better not mess up with the less casual stuff.
  • Crabhand - August 10, 2011 7:10 p.m.

    That is actually kind of surprising. I wonder who will move in to fill in the market share of people who want Motocross games. My sister will certainly be disappointed.
  • Zepaw - August 10, 2011 7:02 p.m.

    “We are making shifts to reduce movie-based and licensed kids’ video games in our portfolio, which underscores our strategy to move away from games that will not generate strong profits in the future..." It is nice to hear they are getting into more "serious" fare. It is interesting to hear them say it is more profitable than the casual/kiddie stuff.

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