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Reader Comments (119)

Posted: May 18th 2011 3:03AM Revolting said

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@(Unverified) Actually, I wasn't confusing revenue with profit, I know the difference quite well, thanks, which is why I mentioned neither. "Money maker" is quite an ambiguous term, which can plausibly be applied to both revenue and profit. In this instance I would have thought it fairly obvious that it was being used for revenue, not profit, as that the entire point of this article and discussion is that there was no profit.
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Posted: May 17th 2011 3:43PM Saker said

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Wow. That's something sounds kind of petty, like Atari just demands crap-loads of money NOW! And if they don't get it they'll, like Cartman take their toys and "go home". Not to say that Cryptic hasn't been doing very badly or anything. I've though Star Treks only hope was to go fully to some kind of ftp (done in a better way then they did CO), because it just doesn't seem good (frankly) enough to be old-fashioned AAA title monthly style subscription.

Posted: May 17th 2011 3:43PM Dirame said

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Atari has never been known for their patience, I'm sad to see this happen.

Posted: May 17th 2011 3:44PM Verus said

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They got monthly subscription and c-stote while still being in the red how is that even possible ?

Posted: May 17th 2011 4:37PM Sente said

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@Verus

Because Neverwinter Nights is not bringing in any money and its development likely costs a bit more than the profit the other two games bring in.




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Posted: May 17th 2011 5:19PM Ironraptor said

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@Sente
Of course the development would cost more, they were not able to rush it out the door like they did CO and STO with out risking another backlash.
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Posted: May 17th 2011 3:45PM BigAndShiny said

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Nooooo. Neverwinter cannot be canned. It had promise

Posted: May 17th 2011 3:49PM Dunraven said

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From what they are saying over at STO it isn't that bad scuttlebutt has it that Jack will most likely buy the studio back, which I think is what he's been wanting all along.

Posted: May 17th 2011 3:58PM WhatDeficit said

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@Dunraven Thats a lot of capital for an individual to put up though I agree it would be the ideal situation for the players. He'd have to come in with a consortium of investors and thats not always a good thing.

Worst case scenario.. They get sold in pieces.
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Posted: May 17th 2011 3:50PM Firix said

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NOTHING BAD IS HAPPENING!

Stop jumping to conclusions.

Posted: May 17th 2011 3:52PM WhatDeficit said

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It was time for this studio to go - they've completely bungled their last two released and that cannot be solely blamed on Atari.

I would suspect that WB would be the most logical buyer. The have a greta interest in smaller studios, big IPs and the free to play model.

CBS has its own problems and probably make more than enough from licensing so why take on the burden. I just don't see this as the right fit for Activision but I could be wrong.

Posted: May 17th 2011 5:42PM Ironraptor said

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@WhatDeficit

Personally I dont see WB picking up a 2nd MMO dev epically one in the red.
NCsoft with their standards would end cryptic for good.
SoE would buy and run crytic games with the smallest amount of devs possible.
Don't think EA is willing to gamble on a 3rd mmo studio.
Activision honestly cant say what Bobby and friends would do, They probably be some major changes in cryptic as they don't like red.
THQ may not want to waste what little resources they have
MS would impose its strict rules of online gaming.
Not sure where Accliam and Ubiosft would do.
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Posted: May 17th 2011 6:39PM Rho said

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@Ironraptor

Acclaim has been defunct since 2004 and the unrelated Acclaim Games (which is also defunct) was bought out by Playdom in May 2010 and closed in August of the same year.
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Posted: May 17th 2011 3:52PM Paradigm68 said

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Whats tough for players is they'll have no idea of what's going to happen to their game until a buy picks up cryptic AND decides what they'll do with it.

On the plus side if you are a big fan of Star Trek but hate STO this may open up an opportunity for it to be remade in the future if it doesn't get picked up.

Posted: May 17th 2011 4:00PM Gryphmon said

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I haven't liked Atari since they litigated the Rollercoaster Tycoon franchice to death.

Posted: May 17th 2011 4:01PM (Unverified) said

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Someone will buy Cryptic ... and hopefully it will be someone that is more committed to these titles and will give them increased attention and development.

Posted: May 17th 2011 4:08PM Seldra said

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All I gotta say is, I was tempted to buy a box for STO as it was in the bin for 10 bucks in Gamestop, glad I went for something else then. I was actually debating my decisions over it all day.

Posted: May 17th 2011 5:38PM StClair said

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@Seldra

I finally picked it up (online, via Steam) shortly after the start of the year, around the 1 year anniversary. If it goes down tomorrow, I'll be sad (obviously), but I'll consider it money well spent for the time and fun I had.
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Posted: May 17th 2011 4:10PM Utakata said

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"Support for Champions Online and Star Trek Online will be continuing as normal, our staff is working hard on their projects... and there are no planned changes to the way any of our games and projects will operate."

I remember something similar being officially stated about APB before they pulled the plug on it.

Posted: May 17th 2011 4:15PM aurickle said

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The bottom line is that STO and CO are highly niche games with a small (and highly loyal) player base and niggling interest from everyone else. Since both games have been operating in the red basically from the start, that creates a problem for Atari.

SoE is able to bankroll marginal games (as they've done with Vanguard, PotBS and SWG) by a two-pronged approach. First, they maintain the minimum possible staff to keep people playing the game. Second, they bundle those games into their big "All You Can Eat" subscription. The philosophy is that a game that can't stand on its own can survive if it entices people to buy the more expensive subscription.

This is something Atari could have done with Cryptic's games. However, if their objective is to get out of MMO's altogether then it would make perfect sense for them to sell the studio.

At the end of the day, this might prove to be a good thing for all of Cryptic's games. Any buyer is going to be highly motivated to see a profit. So they might well think of an "all you can eat" subscription option. They are also likely to put a strong emphasis on rolling out new content quickly and fixing problems so that the games can gather more players. Even better, they might well object to some of Emmert and crew's more questionable decisions.

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