Friday, February 11, 2011

Blog Post: Followup=Activision may try to buy Take-Two!?!?....

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Well, this is sort of a part 2 to my last blog post. When I wrote it up yesterday, I was pretty confused with what looked like Activision's plan to leave developing traditional console video games entirely. How else to explain a publisher cancelling almost their entire roster of IP and closing their studios?

Well, a possible explanation has made itself clear today, and it's not one that would be a good thing. It's being rumored that Activision's next move will be to acquire Take-Two Interactive, the publishing giant who owns Rockstar Games, 2k games, and all their franchises, including, of course, the likes of Grand Theft Auto.

To be completely honest, this scares me. Take-Two has been one of the few publishing giants that I've respected over the years. They allow their games to spend years in development if needed, they're generous with granting their developers the freedom to create new IP, and there's a strong sense of quality to much of what they release, especially from the likes of Rockstar. None of these traits gel well with Activision's strategy, which is to release yearly installments of each and every franchise and to downplay the importance of creating new IP.

What's becoming alarmingly clear, given Activision's decision to cancel a majority of their in-house titles and franchises, is that the company has given up on creating new IP themselves, and instead are content to simply wait until another company's IP becomes successful, acquire it, milk it for all its worth, and close the studio. Not a good thing for the industry at all.

I'm hoping beyond hope that this is just a baseless rumor, and I really hope Take-Two is capable of defending themselves from this buyout if it turns out to be in fact true. This isn't the first time the publisher has been targeted for a buyout, EA tried years ago, unsuccessfully, which demonstrates that Take-Two, at least back then, had a strong desire to remain independent. I really hope beyond hope that this is still the case.

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