Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
The Almighty Buck Entertainment Games

EA Abandons Efforts To Take Over Take-Two 98

Posted by Soulskill
from the no-dice dept.
Erik J writes "Electronic Arts has abandoned plans to absorb Grand Theft Auto IV publisher Take-Two Interactive, the company announced earlier today. Following over half a year of hostile buyout offers by EA, the pair went into talks under a confidentiality agreement in late August. From the official announcement: 'EA continues to have a high regard for Take-Two's creative teams and products, [but] after careful consideration, including a management presentation and review of other due diligence materials provided by Take-Two Interactive Software Inc., EA has decided not to make a proposal to acquire Take-Two and has terminated discussions with Take-Two.' The announcement caused Take-Two's stock to drop by 30%, and analysts expect a bidding war to ensue for employment of the GTA creators."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

EA Abandons Efforts To Take Over Take-Two

Comments Filter:
  • by 4D6963 (933028) on Monday September 15, 2008 @07:43PM (#25019497)
    The Flying Spaghetti Monster be praised! Hallelujah and Allahu Akbar!
    • by elrous0 (869638) *
      Does this meant we won't be getting GTA 2009, GTA 2010, or GTA 2011?
      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by joshtheitguy (1205998)
        No this means we will continue to get GTA without install restrictions, SecuROM and all the other EA bullshit.
  • Good (Score:2, Interesting)

    by DanWS6 (1248650)
    We need more publishers, not less. Well, we need less EA but that's too much to hope for.
    • We need EA to start caring about more than the bottom line. Again too much to hope for. Would be solved by gamers not spending money on crap games released year after year with just a different number and no actual improvements. Again...

      • Re:Good (Score:5, Interesting)

        by hairyfeet (841228) <.bassbeast1968. .at. .gmail.com.> on Tuesday September 16, 2008 @12:10AM (#25021535) Journal
        As long as we have jocks and EA has Madden they'll keep dumping junk,because the jocks buying Madden by the truckload can cover the bills. I know one guy who already has a deal in place with a friend at gamestop who sends him Madden for the PS3,PSP,PS2,and Wii the second they get them and just charges his CC. The guy even pays some crazy shipping fees so he gets it the same day. As long as there are guys like that,who don't even care if EA does squat but update the rosters,then EA will have a license to be asshats. But as always this is my 02c,YMMV
  • Good Riddance I say.

  • Thumbs up (Score:5, Interesting)

    by renegadesx (977007) on Monday September 15, 2008 @08:02PM (#25019681)
    Good move, you know EA would have populated the market with yearey (or twice yearley) low quality GTA's and Bioshock's with Spore DRM (SecuROM).

    They would figure most would just buy them anyways = more profit for them.

    One thing that is really good for the industry out of all this, is this prevents EA Sports from monopolizing the sports genre.

    EA recently spoke about trying to win back our hearts and shed this negative image people have about EA. However I must say that they are not doing it right. Yes they are introducing new interesting IP's such as Spore, Mirror's Edge and Dead Space. However they wont win any heats with hostile takeovers and horrible DRM!
    • Re:Thumbs up (Score:5, Informative)

      by Pyrion (525584) on Monday September 15, 2008 @08:26PM (#25019901) Homepage

      FYI, BioShock also has SecuROM.

    • Re:Thumbs up (Score:4, Interesting)

      by philspear (1142299) on Monday September 15, 2008 @08:49PM (#25020103)

      You know, if GTA had been cloned after san andreas, I think a lot of people would have been happy. Not to say that innovation is bad, just pointing out that changing up your cash cow is a risky move that doesn't always work out best for everyone.

      Of course, I liked the new GTA even if I did miss some of the elements of san andreas. It's also worth noting that the transition from 2d GTAs, which were great for their time but got old fast, to the 3d sandbox with cutscenes is a risk I don't see EA taking ever.

      Yes they are introducing new interesting IP's such as Spore, Mirror's Edge and Dead Space. However they wont win any heats with hostile takeovers and horrible DRM!

      Tsk tsk, PC gamers are so self-centered and idealistic sometimes. The lesson they're going to take from the DRM issues this round is "Making games available on the PC is more trouble than it is worth, consoles only from now on." It's reasoning like that which makes me want to kick them in the face, but their security guards always stop me.

      • Tsk tsk, PC gamers are so self-centered and idealistic sometimes

        I'm a console gamer mostly these days, "limited installs" DRM has pretty much made me almost give up on PC gaming, as someone who likes to re-image his machine every 3-6 months.

        Yes I know consoles have DRM too, but at least its not the type that goes out of its way to annoy me.

        • by Ash-Fox (726320)

          I'm a console gamer mostly these days, "limited installs" DRM has pretty much made me almost give up on PC gaming, as someone who likes to re-image his machine every 3-6 months.

          I own quite a few games, I just don't own any games by EA because... Well, they produce nothing I like mainly.

          What non-EA game has limited installs? I can't think of any.

          Yes I know consoles have DRM too, but at least its not the type that goes out of its way to annoy me.

          I don't know... Charging you to play online with your own hardwa

          • I don't know... Charging you to play online with your own hardware (you hosting a server) on software you have already bought with the internet connection you've already paid for would annoy me (I'm looking at you, xbox).

            Thats not a DRM, thats another annoyance. It does look like with PSN catching up, Live will have to become free (or significantly cheaper) sooner than later.

            • by Ash-Fox (726320)

              Thats not a DRM, thats another annoyance. It does look like with PSN catching up, Live will have to become free (or significantly cheaper) sooner than later.

              It's blocking your digital rights from running your own server without paying. I'd say that's a DRM. With xbox live providing practically everything, but online play for free. I also don't see why Microsoft should consider lowering their prices, xbox owners will pay, they have no other choice when it comes to online gaming with the xbox.

              • It's blocking your digital rights from running your own server without paying. I'd say that's a DRM. With xbox live providing practically everything, but online play for free.

                Point

                I also don't see why Microsoft should consider lowering their prices, xbox owners will pay, they have no other choice when it comes to online gaming with the xbox.

                Yes they have no other choice when it comes to online gaming with xbox but that does give some incentive snub the Xbox in favor of the PS3. They wont get all of em but they will get some, and that equals Microsoft losing customers and business to Sony.
                Yes Xbox Live is superior to PSN but PSN is catching up.

            • Thats not a DRM, thats another annoyance. It does look like with PSN catching up, Live will have to become free (or significantly cheaper) sooner than later.

              FIRST POST... oops I mean you never see non-anons making trollish posts like that, similarly anyone who pulls equivalent crap on Xbox Live gets their account banned. Since it actually costs them if they want to keep doing it, it stops pretty quick. If Xbox live goes free, you can expect to see a barrage of fresh accounts getting made daily with trolls

      • It's also worth noting that the transition from 2d GTAs, which were great for their time but got old fast, to the 3d sandbox with cutscenes is a risk I don't see EA taking ever.

        The 2ds were even more sandboxy

        • by Don_dumb (927108)

          The 2ds were even more sandboxy

          Perhaps my memory is not serving me well but I disagree.

          I quite liked setting up a blockade/defences and getting into a fight with the never-ending supply of police, then trying to leg-it to safety.
          I don't think that was so possible or 'free' (for want of a better word) in the 2d editions. Nor could you just fly around like the 3d editions.

          • The 2d ones were so limited in what you could do that I'm prepared to say it was not sandbox. In GTA 2 you could steal cars that were of varying speeds, listen to really horrible radio (an entire channel of 1 minute looped chinese in a high female voice) pick up aproximately 4 weapons, run over strings of elvis impersonators, and collect "GTA" logos. And then do the missions. I suppose the 2d ones had vehicle jumps, but how could you tell?

            There was more freedom with just the sniper rifle in GTA 3 than an

      • by elrous0 (869638) *

        "if GTA had been cloned after san andreas"

        It was. They called it "Saints Row."

        Thank you folks, I'll be here all week. Be sure to try out our all-you-can-eat potato bar.

    • by MaineCoon (12585)

      As has been mentioned, Bioshock used the same DRM that Spore used, and used a year before Spore came out. I believe GTA4 for PC will use it as well.

    • DOn't forget about Downloadable Content too :3
  • Meh. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by morari (1080535) on Monday September 15, 2008 @08:05PM (#25019713) Journal

    Take Two hasn't done anything really worthy of praise in recent memory. People may think some of the products are groundbreaking or artistic, but its really just been squeals pop culture junk. They probably would have fit in perfectly at EA.

    • Re:Meh. (Score:5, Funny)

      by QuantumG (50515) * <qg@biodome.org> on Monday September 15, 2008 @08:16PM (#25019805) Homepage Journal

      hehe, they ship. That's what makes them different to EA.

    • Re:Meh. (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Idiomatick (976696) on Monday September 15, 2008 @11:37PM (#25021319)

      EA could destroy GTA.

      coder: We are thinking of adding a mission where you have to beat up a hooker for a pimp. You know be the muscle.

      EA: lets send you to our committee

      com1: Sounds wicked, but do you have to beat her?

      com2: You know figures show that hookers offend some of our market, how would you feel about taking them out?

      com3: Do you really NEED to say pimp? Cant he just be a .... mechanic.... that needs his wrench.

      com4: Yeah the girl can be a valuable employee and she gives you the wrench, then you bring it to him.

      com: Thanks for this great idea put it in right away.

      Trust me, EA can take ANYTHING and make it crap.

      • by Ash-Fox (726320)

        EA could destroy GTA.

        coder: We are thinking of adding a mission where you have to beat up a hooker for a pimp. You know be the muscle.

        EA: lets send you to our committee

        com1: Sounds wicked, but do you have to beat her?

        com2: You know figures show that hookers offend some of our market, how would you feel about taking them out?

        com3: Do you really NEED to say pimp? Cant he just be a .... mechanic.... that needs his wrench.

        com4: Yeah the girl can be a valuable employee and she gives you the wrench, then you brin

        • You should try being a postman then - you'll be laughing all day!

        • EA could destroy GTA.

          coder: We are thinking of adding a mission where you have to beat up a hooker for a pimp. You know be the muscle.

          EA: lets send you to our committee

          com1: Sounds wicked, but do you have to beat her?

          com2: You know figures show that hookers offend some of our market, how would you feel about taking them out?

          com3: Do you really NEED to say pimp? Cant he just be a .... mechanic.... that needs his wrench.

          com4: Yeah the girl can be a valuable employee and she gives you the wrench, then you bring it to him.

          com: Thanks for this great idea put it in right away.

          That actually sounds funny to me. I'd play a game for such humor.

          The game that you would play wouldn't be the committee meeting. It would be fetching wrenches for mechanics. ...Unless you want to make a game where you're an employee in a large video game company.

      • by morari (1080535)

        EA could destroy GTA.

        Rockstar seems to have done that well enough on their own. The move to 3D has done very little but water down the experience so as to better carter to the frat boy demographic.

    • by IorDMUX (870522)

      Take Two hasn't done anything really worthy of praise in recent memory

      I guess it depends on your definition of "Recent", but ...

      TES IV: Oblivion?
      Civilization IV?
      Manhunt?

      (Yeah, I know, BioShock, too, but I played the old System Shock's and agree that BioShock is just "pop culture junk".) And besides... if EA eats up Take Two, Duke Nukem Forever might be *gasp* published! Think of the earth-numbing anti-climax as a Quake III lookalike narrated by Madden and with ~ 2 hours of gameplay appears from the darkness... *shudder*

      • by morari (1080535)

        Oblivion was infinitely inferior to the greatness that was Morrowind however. Outside of the much improved journal system, Oblivion was dumbed-down for a console release and was not better for it.

        • by IorDMUX (870522)
          I'm not so certain about that... I've got my quips with Oblivion, but most are easily modded away. Have you looked at the PC-side content creator for Oblivion--the TES Construction Set? It is superior to the Morrowind version, which shows that the programmers certainly didn't forget about their huge PC-modding audience. Oblivion is far more malleable than was Morrowind... though I do return to bask in Morrowind's greatness from time to time. :-)
  • Good (Score:5, Interesting)

    by unity100 (970058) on Monday September 15, 2008 @08:34PM (#25019967) Homepage Journal
    EA has a bad habit of screwing everything they put their hands on. look at spore and how did it end up.
    • Re:Good (Score:4, Funny)

      by Garridan (597129) on Monday September 15, 2008 @08:40PM (#25020029)
      Don't worry. They'll be back for Takover of Take Two, Take Two. In fact, they had to give up once, for precisely that.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Ash-Fox (726320)

      EA has a bad habit of screwing everything they put their hands on. look at spore and how did it end up.

      Spore didn't interest me to begin with?

      It really doesn't matter who distributes, develops it etc. - I am not interested at all in it.

      I am sure there are plenty of other gamers like me.

      • by nedlohs (1335013)

        Wow, that's amazing.

        Who knew that not everyone likes the idea of every game ever thought of.

        Next you'll be claiming some people prefer vanilla ice cream over chocolate ice cream.

        • by Ash-Fox (726320)

          Who knew that not everyone likes the idea of every game ever thought of.

          *Motivational poster border*

          *Spore creature that looks like poop*

          "Crappy game is a crap game!"

    • How would you know? (Score:4, Informative)

      by Moraelin (679338) on Tuesday September 16, 2008 @04:56AM (#25022925) Journal

      How would you know? Was there a Spore before and after being owned by EA, or wth? Because from where I stand, it kinda looks to me like Maxis was owned by EA for a long time now.

      Speaking of which, have you noticed how nobody else funded a Spore or a The Sims? I don't have much love for EA as a corporation or for their DRM, but when was the last time anyone _else_ brought a new genre to the mainstream? I can't think of anything before or after The Sims, all the way to when Id made Wolfenstein 3D. Ok, ok, there was also Ultima Online which brought us the graphical MMO... also published by EA. If you look back for two decades or so, there are exactly two companies which blessed us with new genres: Id and EA. Hmm. Maybe it says something.

      Or even a new take on an existing genre? Well, Spore sure feels that way. Or the only PC single-player RPGs this decade which _weren't_ yet another medieval theme? Well, blimey, I can only think of two publishers: LucasArts publishing yet another title in their StarWars franchise (but cancelling almost anything else than SW titles) because they already knew it sells, and EA taking a chance with MassEffect. You know, at a time where everyone else was rationalizing their risk-aversion via convoluted armchair-psychologist conjectures about how players only relate to swords and can't get in-character with a gun.

      The average publisher these days seems to be more about cloning whatever sold well last year. Or maybe feeling bold and trying to mix two. "I know! We'll make a Grand-Theft Battlefield Tycoon! That'll sell."

      EA might not be perfect, but it seems far less risk-averse when it comes to trying new things.

      So did EA screw Spore? Or maybe Spore wouldn't even have existed, if not for EA? As I was saying, I can't imagine many other publishers even trying that. New unproven game type with creatures evolving? Nah, we'll make yet another wannabe HalfLife clone.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by unity100 (970058)
        come on. this is will wright. somebody else was gonna fund it, be it ea or another.

        spore idea was on his mind for a long time. but it didnt mature into fruition until lately.

        ea didnt take any chances with mass effect. it was funded by microsoft.
      • by discord5 (798235)

        EA taking a chance with MassEffect.

        Bzzzzzzt, wrong. Bioware took the chance, EA just bought Bioware. Mass Effect was released only a month after EA purchased Bioware for a whopping 860M$. (I know people who'd sell their soul for much much less) EA basicly bought a winning ticket with Mass Effect, and with it yet another franchise they can milk. The actual risk was on the side of Bioware at the time, but they knew since E3 2006 that they'd won the lottery.

        The only thing EA has done so far (that I know of) with anything from Bioware is port Ma

      • by morari (1080535)

        Spore is far from a new genre. It is, at best, a bunch of other genres thrown together in a very unflattering manner.

    • by Quietust (205670)
      Perhaps a better example would be what EA did to The Orange Box when they ported it to the PlayStation 3 - the PC version is great, but the PS3 version is thoroughly awful and ridiculously buggy.
  • by Bob9113 (14996) on Monday September 15, 2008 @10:49PM (#25020989) Homepage

    The market responded by punishing the stock price of both companies. There could be little more clear evidence that the market is not efficient. How stupid does one need to be to think that EA + Take Two would be better than the two independently? Or, perhaps, how broken must our "free" market be for that combination to make sense?

    EA pumps out extremely polished, but hopelessly formulaic titles. They treat their employees like interchangeable cogs. And they count every bean as if it were their last. It's not everyone's style, but it works for the products they create.

    Take Two creates lavish works that are expressions of a borderline mental artistic genius. They treat their employees like, well, Rock Stars. They blow through cash like a 1999 dot-com. They are constantly bouncing from rags to riches and back again, but when they hit they move the industry.

    The idiot investment analyst looks at that and thinks, "Imagine Take Two's brilliant artistry with EA's money management and product-focus." But, that is why you are called an "idiot" investment analyst, idiot. These are not compatible business models. EA is no more capable of nurturing artistry than Take Two is of being efficient. They are specialized, and they excel because they are specialized. Their flaws are facets of the strengths that make them great.

    • To be fair I invested in Take-two last year and sold 3 months ago because people are stupid and make me money by investing like sheep. Either i'm smart and making money from this or just stupid faster than everyone else. But possibly someone did this before me ... prempting me i mean i wasnt quite peak to peak ..... My point is, pretty much people dont care about companies at all they just want to get in first and out first. This causes wild fluxuations because there is lots of money to be made while its sw

    • by Don_dumb (927108)
      Fantastic comment about the stock market driving everything towards homogenization and an attempt to do everything that does nothing. However, see the next top level comment below yours by phantomcircuit - The market is punishing *everyone* right now.
    • From what I've heard, Take Two's stock wasn't "punished" per se. It was artificially inflated by the EA buyout offer, with many people betting heavily that EA would eventually cave in and significantly raise their offer. When EA announced it wasn't interested anymore, those investors that were making those bets had to get out ASAP, hence a glut of availability, and a consequent lowering of the price. Take Two's stock was overvalued by definition, because of the premium offered by EA. Now it's finding a

      • by Bob9113 (14996)

        Ahh - yes. You make a very good point. These were not investors who were buying the stock because of the long-term potential. These were gamblers. Good point.

    • This isn't surprising at all.

      The market is there to make money, not to promote games as art, independence, or consumer interests. If the acquisition of Take Two would have made the investors a lot of money, you can expect a negative market response when the deal falls apart.

  • by phantomcircuit (938963) on Monday September 15, 2008 @10:51PM (#25021001) Homepage
    Just maybe this story has something to do with the complete fallout of the credit market... just maybe

    JUST MAYBE? [washingtonpost.com]
    • Well done for noticing that stating the share price performance for a single company without stating the performance of the rest of the market at the same time tells us very little about how well that comany is actually doing.
  • The last sentence of the summary - and the article it links to - are incorrect. Sam and Dan Houser did not create GTA, Dave Jones did. DMA Design was not affiliated with Rockstar in any way when that game was created.

    • by Don_dumb (927108)
      According to wikipedia Rockstar North [wikipedia.org] IS DMA Design who primarily developed the Grand Theft Auto series [wikipedia.org] with the creator Dave Jones, so I'd say that also calling the Housers 'creators' is fair considering their importance in the creation of the game. Wikipedia may be wrong (and that's lazy journalism if it is). But anything to back up your 'correction'?
    • From what I've read, the Housers are responsible for the huge emphasis on 'realism'. DMA's original 2D GTAs were set in a completely absurd world, with gangs like the Loonies or the Mad Scientists, and secrets like occasionally seeing a whole crowd of Elvis impersonators who'd give you a point bonus for getting them all.

      When the Housers got involved, they pushed it towards the emphasis on glorifying the Mafia movies that all the gangbangers, and the wiggas following the gangbangers' cultural lead, were into

  • corporate date rape (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Mr_Blank (172031) on Monday September 15, 2008 @11:21PM (#25021197) Journal

    EA decides to buy their competitor, Take Two. Take Two opens its books for EA. After completely digesting the business model, plans, culture, and product line up EA changes its mind and walks away. Take Two then has to continue competing with EA as if it never happened; all the while knowing that EA has a leg up now that it has seen "the books" and knows the next few moves in advance.

          EA needs a shower after that groping.

         

    • by mmalove (919245)

      It's like a big game of texas hold em. Their own interest in Take Two drove the price up some 30%, now they have to feign disinterest to drive it back down. But, at 30% off it'll probably look ripe for acquisition again.

      Gotta love free markets.

      Oh, and spore is awesome up until the tribal stage. It's pretty obvious Will Wright ran outta creative genius right there. As fun as it is to blame EA, I don't think they had much to do with it.

      Creepy customizable pacman/flow game -> Innovative genre shattering

  • test comment to see if ISP transparent proxy settings have been updated.

You don't have to know how the computer works, just how to work the computer.

Working...