Publisher THQ is in a bit of a financial pickle – and we’ve speculated that one of the reasons for that is that they’ve pretty much been throwing money at Itagaki’s new Valhalla Game Studios. THQ was to publish Itagaki’s Devil’s Third – a stylish, violent third-person action slasher/shooter from the Ninja Gaiden developer.
Well, not any more.
Citing unexpected development costs resulting from the development of a new engine for the game, THQ has pulled the rug out from under Devil’s Third’s development – and has reneged on publishing it entirely. THQ president and CEO Brian Farrell said in an investor call that the game no longer “fits THQ’s profile.” THQ is doing all it can to ensure the game still comes to market, but if it gets published, it’ll be through a third party.
“The one thing that’s completely different between the Eastern publisher and Western publisher is the budget,” Itagaki said earlier this year. “ I’ve made more than 30 games, and if you put a little bit more into the one I’m making now, Devil’s Third, I could make all of the 30 games I made before. That’s the big difference.”
Well, you’ll not be seeing any more money from THQ, who’s reported annual losses to the tune of $239.9 million.
Who do you think will pick up Devil’s Third? From what we’ve seen, it looks excellent, bringing the spark that’s missing from the latest, Itagaki-free Ninja Gaiden. A publisher who’s picked up strays that comes to mind are EA – who published Shadows of the Damned and saved Brutal Legend from the scrapheap. Neither of those were particularly profitable though, so they might consider it too risky. Another potential publisher is the once again profitable Square-Enix, who’s shown a willingness to publish games, like Sleeping Dogs, that would otherwise be destined to disappear.
Last Updated: May 16, 2012