THQ Inc is ranked as the 5th largest game publisher in the US, yet it is struggling to become profitable.
Inherent Risks Of Making Games
A major problem of the game industry is that it’s very hard to predict the success of a game. Even if you deliver a quality game, reviews or bad timing (economy etc.) can result in lower game sales and you will barely break even.
Games cost a lot of money to make nowadays. You can easily compare games with the production of a movie. Sure, there are Indie developers that work with small budgets, but when we talk about publishers like EA, Take-Two, Activision or THQ then it becomes clear that you can spend a lot of money on making a game. The risk of producing a game is even getting bigger due to shifting trends.
Yes, games will always sell well to a certain audience, but social and mobile games become increasingly popular and have a clear advantage: They are cheaper and will work “on-the-go”.
Adapt Or Die: THQ’s New Strategy
THQ is now focusing more on high-quality IP’s and their core games, stepping away from licensed kids games. That’s a good step into the right direction and will probably result in higher sales.
Their current lineup for 2012 and beyond include games like Darksiders 2, UFC3, Metro Last Light, South Park The Game, Homefront 2 (Crytek) and various other games including two new unannounced original IP’s.
THQ also teamed up with Innovative Leisure to bring you the best arcade games to your iPhone. Innvoative Leisure is a company formed by famous devs like the XBOX creator. If anyone can pull this off and bring some of the best arcade games of the 80’s to the mobile phones, it’s probably them.
Hopefully, THQ will be able to perform a nice turnaround, else we will lose cool games like Saints Row, Red Faction, Darksiders and many more games.