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Author Topic: Activision and Vivendi merge  (Read 4307 times)
Shiver
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Activision and Vivendi merge
« on: December 03, 2007, 03:19:13 am »

(Source: http://www.switched.com/2007/12/02/activision-vivendi-announce-biggest-game-publishing-merger/)

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For years now, Electronic Arts has been the global powerhouse in the video game industry thanks to multi-million dollar franchises like 'Madden' and 'The Sims.' Now, though, it's about to be relegated to second place thanks to a new, multi-billion dollar deal that would merge two powerhouse game publishers: Activision and Vivendi Games, creating the largest publisher of video games in the world.

Activision got its start in the Atari days, its first notable title being the classic 'Pitfall!'. Today, after decades of growth and acquisition, it owns major franchises like 'Guitar Hero 3: Legends of Rock' and 'Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare.' Vivendi, on the other hand, got its start as a mid-nineteenth-century firm that only recently got into the media game, but quickly gained publishing rights to massively popular games from Blizzard such as 'World of Warcraft' and the 'Starcraft' series.

However, while Activision has been steadily growing, Vivendi's media group nearly folded just a few years ago until they sold off assets to stay afloat. In this deal, it will spend $1.7 billion and contribute its Sierra and Blizzard companies in exchange for taking a 52-percent stake in the resulting company, called Activision Blizzard.

So, lots of cash changing hands, but what does this mean to gamers? Probably not much. It'll be at least six months before the merger is complete, and a lot longer than that before we start seeing anyone from World of Warcraft showing as an unlockable character in 'Guitar Hero IV.'


Activision owns Toys For Bob. What the heck does this mean for them now that PR3 and Fred Ford are going to be sitting under the same umbrella as the colossus known as Blizzard Entertainment?
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Lukipela
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Re: Activision and Vivendi merge
« Reply #1 on: December 03, 2007, 06:17:24 am »

World of Star Control probably.
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Vivendi to aquire majority control of Activision
« Reply #2 on: December 03, 2007, 04:03:35 pm »

Vevendi, the software publisher that owns Blizzard Entertainment, announced yesterday that they're going to aquire majority shares of Activision.  They will merge the two under the same corporate hood, to be called Activision Blizzard.  Since Toys for Bob is itself owned by Activision (if I remember right), maybe this will be the extra bit of financial leverage needed to start production of the next Star Control! 

Comcast article that first mentioned the story.

FAQ from Blizzard's POV.

Interview with Blizzard CEO Mike Morhaime.

Activision's merger page.  Not much to see here yet, though.


Moderator edit: merged in this posting from from General Discussion.

« Last Edit: December 04, 2007, 03:20:34 pm by meep-eep » Logged

Anthony
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Re: Activision and Vivendi merge
« Reply #3 on: December 04, 2007, 12:44:11 am »

Activision owns Toys For Bob. What the heck does this mean for them now that PR3 and Fred Ford are going to be sitting under the same umbrella as the colossus known as Blizzard Entertainment?

I was thinking the exact same thing when I thought of this merger.  Activision Blizzard will become a much larger publisher, and hopefully, maybe they'll also like the idea of a Star Control game.

So, there will be more people working in Management, and hopefully they'll be more lenient with the deadlines for video games.  I hate it when games that are rushed and missing the polish and details that it should have had if it had more time.
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Re: Activision and Vivendi merge
« Reply #4 on: December 04, 2007, 07:31:31 am »

... be more people working in Management... be more lenient

Sorry, I read those two in the same sentence and the alarm bells began ringing. Corporate business life is usually the other way around. More people in management means more reorganisation (read: downsizing and cutting down on the useful stuff like say uhm... programmers, just to make room in the budget for all those managers), which results in more workload in the rank and file and thus tighter deadlines, just so that ludicrous amount of managers can all make their deadlines and thus receive their bonus.

Oh uhm, I was ranting wasn't I? Living through 3 reorganisations being rank and file do that to you I guess...

To top it off, I'll toss in a well known picture from the net explaining the situation:




Seriously, I do hope that this will mean more budget and time for a new SC game, but I doubt it. It doesn't have the typical catchphrases attached to it (you know: "new", "refreshing", "breathtaking gfx", "uberl33t gear". Oh, I'm drifting again...).

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Re: Activision and Vivendi merge
« Reply #5 on: December 04, 2007, 01:23:45 pm »

Oh, poor Herbert. Cheesy

I see that you've seen something similar to this firsthand, so you've got a strong point there.  Like Fred said in one of his posts, there are some games that they'll make, just to make sure that they'll always "have food on the table".
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Re: Activision and Vivendi merge
« Reply #6 on: December 04, 2007, 03:39:58 pm »

The FAQ linked from Razorback's post suggests that there are no real changes for development as a consequence of this merger.
Which makes me wonder what the advantages of this merger are. How do they imagine that this merger creates "a stronger and more diversified company that we anticipate will benefit and strengthen both brands."? More resistance to bad results from one part?

It is also possible that while this merger doesn't really change all that much, there's a step two which does.
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Re: Activision and Vivendi merge
« Reply #7 on: December 04, 2007, 07:17:08 pm »

It's possible that by having more products in the works at once, the irregularities of the development cycle can be smoothed out better. Tools could be developed once and used multiple times. Or it could just be impulsive expansion.
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Re: Activision and Vivendi merge
« Reply #8 on: December 05, 2007, 12:59:45 am »

It doesn't matter.. EA Games will aquire Activision Blizzard in a hostile takeover, then relocate all it's operations to India in order to skirt anti trust laws in the U.S.
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