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First Person Shooters (Games)

Midway - New Unreal Publisher, Inching Toward Profit? 16

Thanks to Yahoo for reprinting the press release revealing Midway has announced a multi-product agreement with Epic to publish three new Unreal franchise games. The deal is "including Unreal Championship 2 [originally to be published by Microsoft], an Xbox exclusive title scheduled to ship in 2005, and two future installments of Unreal Tournament [previous versions published by Atari] on PC and upcoming next generation consoles." In related news, Midway announced financial results for Q2 2004, with some slightly positive news (the company "expects to have shipped over one million units of NBA Ballers through 2004 Q3"), but disappointment in a "loss [of] $9.0 million", and news that Midway "has moved one of its major releases, Area 51, from 2004 into 2005."
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Midway - New Unreal Publisher, Inching Toward Profit?

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  • Well... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by syrion ( 744778 ) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @03:59AM (#9829263)
    Let's just hope that Midway allows Epic to develop the games on their own, without screwing with them. The main problem developers seem to run into is "meddling" publishers, but I don't think Midway is bad for this, and Epic is big enough that they can probably resist any "executive decisions" pretty well. This is probably better than Atari in the long run, anyway, judging from the... interesting decisions Atari made regarding The Temple of Elemental Evil. (That game had several "objectionable" portions taken out... like the children.) The rise of the "publisher" phenomenon in video games is worrisome, though; the effect was hardly positive on the literary front (where everything is now expected to fit into a neat little genre).
  • Now honestly, what diffrence does it make for a game on who publishes it? If it's good people will buy it (sometimes even if it's not).
    • Re:No diff (Score:2, Insightful)

      by syrion ( 744778 )
      Well, different publishers have different personalities. Some like to meddle in the games they publish; "This content is unsuitable," "We demand that this game get a T rating," and so forth. Others don't. Some promote games extremely well, others don't. Still others are notable for their technical choices. Atari, for instance, likes copy protection, even when it affects legitimate buyers negatively (see Unreal Tournament 2004).
      • ut 2004 has the cd check removed in the first patch.

        it's mostly about how much money the publisher can throw at a project anyways(difference between publishers)...
    • The difference it makes is mostly in distribution. The larger companies have better distribution and visibility in stores. It could be the best game in the world, but if consumers can't find it at their local BesTar*Mart, then how would they ever find out? Just because the magazines may give a game a 10 out of 10 rating doesn't mean that it will end up in your house.
    • Now honestly, what diffrence does it make for a game on who publishes it? If it's good people will buy it To me it's Brand recognition. Midway, Atari, etc are all names people recognize and might have certain stigma's attached to them
  • The games industry is huge - ok it must be very competative right now, but if you are making quality games, you should aim for a decent profit... how badly can a game flop, that has undergone at least 2 years of development and review? Unless they don't actually check if the game is any good...

    I think prices need to come down, to increase unit sales of games, currently there is room for a handful of popular games.

    I know PS2 owners with about 8 games... 8... thats it... I don't play games on the PC, I will
  • Hmm. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by 13Echo ( 209846 ) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @08:00AM (#9830081) Homepage Journal
    I wonder what this means for future Linux versions of the Unreal games?
  • by h0mer ( 181006 ) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @08:26AM (#9830202)
    My hopes that Unreal Championship 2 will be a good game are now gone. Microsoft was promoting UC2 in all of its press material and it was going to be a major title for Xbox Live. I figure the game isn't good enough for MS so they surrendered their publishing rights. I'm interested to see what the Xbox-exclusive title is, though.

    It still boggles me how Midway could fall so far. Anyone have a link to a Midway timeline, possibly detailing bad management decisions?
  • No Mac version? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by squiggleslash ( 241428 ) on Thursday July 29, 2004 @08:49AM (#9830375) Homepage Journal
    two future installments of Unreal Tournament [previous versions published by Atari] on PC and upcoming next generation consoles."
    Does this mean there'll not be a Mac version, or does it just mean Midway (like Atari) will not be doing the Mac port directly, instead it being ported/sold through MacSoft?

    If they're ruling out a Mac version, does this have implications for the Linux version too? (ie have they lost interest in portability or have they just removed the Mac)

    It would be a shame if the first is true, and definitely unfortunate if the latter too. The UT series is one of the consistantly good ports on the Mac.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      I think there will be a Mac version. The port is done by Epic themselves (Specifically Ryan Gordon, aka icculus.) and then published through Macsoft instead of Atari/Midway. Midway has no influence in Epic's decision to do a Mac port.
  • It's no frickin wonder why some of my friends are getting confused about which copy of the game they should buy before coming over to play with me!
    • I'm confused too... Unreal Unreal championship Unreal championship 2 Unreal Tournament Unreal XMP Unreal tournament 2003 Unreal tournament 2004 Unreal II Unreal tournament All on 2 different engines... Which one do i need to play with my friends?? Also what will this do to the other uses of the Unreal engine? such as movie preproduction? And the furthur developemnt of the Unreal engine?

"my terminal is a lethal teaspoon." -- Patricia O Tuama