Thursday, February 2, 2012

Is the 40K MMOG "Dark Millemium" in peril of cancellation?



While it happened 2 weeks ago, I thought I would cover this story, which is pretty important to us gamers.  Dark MIllenium Online was to be a THQ produced MMOG based on the Warhammer 40 Universe.  But THQ is in trouble and has started cancelling projects.  What is not clear, is if DMO is one of them.

Kotaku.com reported that THQ may well have cancelled DMO.  Reports from Kevin Dent, an industry insider say THQ is being forced to save cash as it prepares itself for sale.  The whole article is here.  The relevant portion is:

Kevin Dent, a games industry veteran, tweeted late yesterday that THQ had canceled an MMO it was developing under license from The Games Workshop, meaning Warhammer 40,000: Dark Millenium Online (pictured above). Dent went on to say that the publisher had also canceled all projects due for release in 2014 and was in the process of returning intellectual property to their licensors.

The purpose, Dent alleged, was to ready THQ for sale. "I am hearing everything (in 2014 is canceled), they need to preserve cash," he said. Dent noted THQ's stock price is around 66 cents; it was about $6 this time last year.

THQ then responded with this:
"THQ has not cancelled its 2014 line-up, and has not made any decisions regarding the planned MMO. 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."

What is telling is that THQ doesn't say Dark Millennium Online is NOT dead.  It gives that wonderful corporate double speak to say they are "reviewing" it.

GamesIndustry.biz then corroborated the speculation about Dark Millennium Online with separate sources, which claimed the MMO was being offered for sale to other companies. 

Some will remember that Cryptic Studios took over Star Trek online when the company producing it previously went bankrupt.  MMOGs are notoriously expensive projects to develop.  I know that I consulted with an actor friend who wanted to develop one for his IP and had to get it through his head that he, and even the small company he was working with, did not have the resources to do so.  He finally dropped it.

Hopefully we will hear in the near future about the plans for Dark Millennium Online.  I for one was looking forward to playing it.





3 comments:

Son of Dorn said...

I think the worst we'll see is the game being pushed back a year. I don't think they'd be able to sell it to anyone as GW's only licensed to THQ exclusively thus far. I'm not worried.

Crimsonshark said...

I am not worried either as Vigil Games, the company actually developing the game is still advertising Job openings linked to DMO.

Michael Whelan said...

Sell it to Blizzard. Love or hate WoW they're a compnay that knows how to make and support MMO, especially ones with a rich back story.

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