THQ have revealed a stunning realignment of its internal studios, closing several resulting in about 200 employees being layed off. The publisher has also revealed that they will not "actively pursue further development of the MX Vs. ATV franchise at this time."
THQ did not confirm if it was a temporary measure or if the franchise has been fully discontinued like Red Faction, but in stopping development the publisher has closed down two studios in Australia as well as another at their Phoenix location. The Quality Assurance team in Phoenix will not be affected.
As a result of the realignment, 200 odd talents will be out of a job, but THQ are offering those affected to reapply for other positions within the company.
THQ will be moving away from licensed and children's titles to focus on "high-quality owned IP," including several announced titles from its internal studios such as Volition's Saints Row: The Third and inSANE in collaboration with film director Guillermo del Toro; Relic Entertainment are busy at work on Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine; while Vigil is presently at work on Darksiders II, as well as the upcoming MMO Warhammer 40,000: Dark Millennium Online; THQ San Diego is focused on creating "best-in-class" fighting games. THQ Montreal is currently working on an new, unannounced IP.
"With this realignment, we are narrowing our focus to high-quality owned IP with broad appeal that can be leveraged across multiple platforms, and to work with the best talent in the industry. By right-sizing our internal development capacities for our console portfolio, our five internal studios are focused on delivering high-quality games with talented teams driving the execution of those titles to market," said THQ President and CEO Brian Farrell.
"As we have outlined in our business strategies, we are making shifts to reduce movie-based and licensed kids' video games in our portfolio, which underscores our strategy to move away from games that will not generate strong profits in the future."
THQ is also making note of the digital and social, mobile markets: "We will continue to evaluate our capital and resources to concentrate on fast growing digital business initiatives such as social games, mobile and tablet-based digital entertainment."