Tell Me, Tell Me, How To Be A Gazillionaire

MMO publishers have been fairly static for the past decade or so: EA, SOE, NCsoft, a few other forays from Asia and the occasional indy (that more often than not promptly gets borged by one of the above).

But wait! A challenger appears!

Gazillion sure knows how to make a splash. The MMO (massively multi-player online game) publisher has been operating in stealth mode for three years, putting together a collection of development studios and signing one of the biggest video game licensing deals in recent memory: A 10 year pact with Marvel giving it exclusive rights to make MMOs based on every single character in the comic book publisher’s library.

This would be, you know, as opposed to the ten year exclusive deal Marvel signed with Vivendi. In 2002. Or the deal signed with Microsoft to develop Marvel Online with Cryptic for the Xbox 360. In 2005. Clearly, this time it will be different. Why? Because in case the Marvel Universe deal falls through (not that it’s concievable that could ever happen), Gazillion also now owns NetDevil, thus giving them Lego Universe and Jumpgate: Evolution, and Slipgate Ironworks, thus giving them John Romero. Failure: not an option.

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17 Responses to Tell Me, Tell Me, How To Be A Gazillionaire

  1. Arrakiv says:

    Yeah, I found this to be rather surprising news over all. They came out of no where and certainly had some large announcements.

  2. Technogeek says:

    Let me know when the “Rob Hutter is going to make you his bitch” ads show up.

  3. Iconic says:

    @Arrakiv

    I think the unspoken message is that they are still “no where” despite the announcements.

  4. Bonedead says:

    Hey whatdya know, something interesting!

  5. Vetarnias says:

    Heh. If that goes anywhere, it will turn the MMO field into the same cultural wasteland as the big screen with all the back catalogue of superheroes.

    Aren’t City of Heroes and Champions Online enough?

  6. Random Poster says:

    You forgot DC Universe

  7. Vetarnias says:

    How could I ever have forgotten.

  8. Heartless_ says:

    Did anyone read this in the same sequence I did and then stop before finishing?

    John Romero. Failure.

  9. JZig says:

    The studio that is working on Marvel Universe was very likely split off from Slipgate: http://doublebuffered.com/2009/03/18/is-john-romero-making-marvel-universe/

    So, I figure there’s a 50/50 chance that John Romero is currently making HULK SMASH.

  10. Anonymous says:

    This blog needs more references to ABC.

  11. Muckbeast says:

    Hahahahahaha.

    John Romero managed to slither his way back into the gaming industry?

  12. Mark Asher says:

    You know, they’ve raised over $100M, which is some serious money, but they have eight — EIGHT! — MMO projects in the works. Once you spread that money around, you are not looking at big budget MMOs.

  13. octopaganini says:

    @ MarkAsher

    Cause yeah, big budget MMO’s were so successful last year.

  14. ethereal.wolf says:

    kool, so we get to look forward to a daikatana mmo soon? lol.

  15. Muckbeast says:

    How much of that $100 is John Romero going to spend on boob jobs for his girlfriends?

    I’ll give him one thing though. At least he shares.

  16. Freakazoid says:

    @Mark Asher
    Well, if you invest 100 million into eight projects, and only manage maybe 100k subs from each one, that’s 800,000 subs paying 10 per month minimum. They may be spread over different games, but part of the profits go straight up to gazillion. I could see them making back this money within a year.

    I admit it’s rather optomistic, but given that single big budget MMOs have not gone well since WoW, I think spreading around your investment may be the wiser choice.

  17. Muckbeast says:

    Also, if they share a single engine, then a lot of the development costs are shared anyway.

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