[Update] THQ Responds To Rumors Of Canceled 2014 Lineup
Latest Update: THQ has issued an official statement, saying that, in spite of the rumors, the company has not canceled its 2014 game lineup. THQ reiterated its strategy of focusing more on core games and reducing its dependence on kids' titles as it moves into 2012 and beyond.
Here's the complete text:
"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.
"Additionally, 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%. And coming up next, we have two great titles for the first half of the year including UFC Undisputed 3 and Darksiders 2."
First Update: THQ PR got back to us and said they haven't heard anything about the rumored 2014 cancellations.
Original story: THQ had a pretty rough fourth quarter, with poor sales of its uDraw drawing tablet and Saints Row: The Third, which didn't make much of a showing in an overstuffed market. If rumors are true, 2012 could continue to be tough for the company. Word is, the company has scrapped its entire 2014 lineup in an attempt to make itself look more attractive to potential buyers.
That scorched-Earth strategy would leave casualties including Crytek's Homefront 2, Guillermo del Toro collaboration inSane, and Warhammer 40,000: Dark Millenium Online, as well as former Assassin's Creed creator Patrice Désilets' new project.
Similar rumors have been floating around for the past two weeks. We contacted THQ, and were told that they simply weren't true. We're in the process of contacting them again to see if anything has changed, and we'll update this story if we learn more.
In the meantime, industry insider Kevin Dent has been on a tweeting tear. Here are some of the highlights:
"THQ have made some stellar moves of late though, Patrice, Crytek etc were very smart moves, but were they too late?"
"I think the root of THQ's problems stem from Farrell's insistence on making a second uDraw product, first one sold "ok""
"Those sort of titles are ridiculously expensive risks, Activision and EA can afford to make mistakes, THQ can't. It's that simple."
"I actually don't believe that uDraw was THQs biggest mistake, that would be releasing SR3 into a hyper competitive market, a Q1 release? Yes"