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Activision Shuts Down Bizarre Creations

Activision has finished ‘exploring options’ regarding the fate of Bizarre Creations, and has now taken steps to shut the Liverpool-based studio down.
A statement made to Develop by Activision executive Coddy Johnson reads “unfortunately, so far we’ve not been able to find any interested parties. So we’ve made as a last resort, a recommendation to the team for closure.”

It seems unbelievable that nobody in the industry would want to purchase the studio responsible for both Geometry Wars and the Project Gotham Racing series, yet Johnson claims that Activision “explored a lot of leads – pretty much anyone you can imagine in the industry.” This suggests that the sticking point may have been whatever price Activision was seeking.

Of course, an issue Johnson did not address is Activision’s need to sell the studio in the first place. Despite claiming to have explored “all options,” the company has shown no desire whatsoever to use any of the obscene amounts of cash generated by the publisher to keep Bizarre going.

This may have something to do with Bizarre being a UK-based developer. In June of last year, Activision head Bobby Kotick made thinly-veiled threats through the Financial Times that the company could begin to pull out of the UK if tax breaks were not delivered upon. Despite Kotick’s lobbying efforts, the newly-elected coalition government went ahead with plans to scrap the proposed tax relief.

With Bizarre Creations set to close, Activision’s only remaining interest in the country is FreeStyleGames (makers of the DJ Hero series.)



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