Published on June 21st, 2012 | by rowsdower2
Death and/or Legal Malfeasance by Tablet
Earlier, I wrote about how THQ is undergoing some add-on woes, amongst other things. Basically, THQ invested all their holiday 2011 hopes into something called the uDraw, an tablet upon which someone could make some arts. The original uDraw did okay business on the Wii, but THQ attempted to expand it to the 360 and the PS3 and make it the big holiday seller. This move did not turn out so well: according to Eurogamer, THQ has about 1.4 million unsold tablets and lost about $10 million on the deal. That situation has hit “buy a landfill in New Mexico to unload the product” bad levels, but it looks like the situation might get a bit worse.
THQ’s shareholders are now suing.
According to GamaSutra, three different law firms (Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd, Robbins Umeda, and Federman & Sherwood) have all launched class-action suits against THQ. A fourth law firm, Holzer, Holzer & Fistel, is investigating whether or not THQ internally realized that the non-Wii versions of the uDraw were turkeys without disclosing that information to investors. If this is true, it might mean (according to these articles) that THQ
might have defrauded investors.
At this point, I should state that I Am Not A Legal Expert. I’m Just Some Guy who Majored in the Liberal Arts and Can Maybe Sometimes Work a Mr. Coffee. That being said, THQ is in some precarious financial straits, and litigation tends to cost a lot of money. I don’t know what damages could be assigned here, but it if it’s anything above nominal then it might be money that THQ can’t pay.
So THQ is in a bit of a bind right now. If they lose, the payout could kill them. If they carry out the lawsuit, legal fees might kill them. Settling seems like the safest option, but there’s three different firms involved, not all of whom may want to settle. This is ignoring the other big elephant in the room, which is that the company may be hosed anyway if the next Saints’ Row performs below expectations.
(Brief note about that: I don’t mind that they’re rolling the stand-alone expansion into the next game so much given the hit-or-miss DLC for SR3, but I’m a bit worried with how fast they want SR4 done. Understand why, but it’s still worrying. Best-case scenario is that it’s like SR2 and takes the world of SR3, makes it more developed, and maybe isn’t marketed so much on DILDOS DILDOS DILDOS. Worse-case scenario is that it’s just what Enter the Dominatrix would have been except a full game.)
So, THQ might be more hosed at a faster rate than it already is. Also, if you want to enter the Saints Row series, maybe watch an LP of 1, get 2 (PC users watch out; it’s a real lousy port), and then go on to 3. Or don’t, live your own life and don’t let some guy on the internet boss you around.
This has been another installment of THQ’s Ongoing Collapse/Saints Row News & Chat. Come back whenever THQ makes another poor decision or the next piece of mediocre-to-bad SR3 DLC drops.