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Interplay Entertainment

Interplay Entertainment
Public
Traded as OTC Pink: IPLY
Industry Video games
Founded 1983
Founder Brian Fargo, Troy Worrell,[1]Jay Patel,[2]Rebecca Heineman[3]
Headquarters Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, California[4], United States
Key people
Herve Caen
(Chairman and CEO)
Products Baldur's Gate series
Battle Chess
ClayFighter series
Descent series
Earthworm Jim series
Fallout series
Icewind Dale series
MDK series
Planescape: Torment
Stonekeep
Wasteland
Number of employees
10 (January 2014)
Divisions Black Isle Studios
Interplay Discovery
Website http://www.interplay.com/

Interplay Entertainment Corporation is an American video game developer and publisher, founded in 1983 as Interplay Productions by Brian Fargo. As a developer, Interplay is best known as the creator of the original Fallout series and as a publisher, for the Baldur's Gate and Descent series.

Contents

  • History 1
    • Interplay Productions 1.1
    • Interplay Entertainment 1.2
    • Lawsuits 1.3
    • Kickstarters 1.4
  • Games 2
  • Studios 3
  • See also 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

History

Interplay Productions

The company was founded in October 1983[5] as Interplay Productions in southern

External links

  1. ^ "Troy Worrell's Linkedin Profile". 
  2. ^ "List of founders". 
  3. ^ "Interview with Rebecca". 
  4. ^
  5. ^ a b c d Rusel DeMaria, Johnny L. Wilson, "High Score." 2nd edition, McGraw-Hill/Osborne: Emeryville, California, 2004. p.209. ISBN 0-07-223172-6
  6. ^ Rebecca Heineman Interview. Digit Press, 2006.
  7. ^ The contract was factually a 9-product deal, as each of the three adventures was targeted for three platforms: Apple II, Commodore 64 and PC (CGA).
  8. ^ Interplay Entertainment at MobyGames
  9. ^ Shay Addams. "if yr cmptr cn rd ths..." In: Computer Entertainment, August 1985, pages 24–27, 76–77.
  10. ^ "Investment in Interplay". Los Angeles Times. May 13, 1999. 
  11. ^ "Information on the change of control to Titus". Frictionlessinsight.com. 2002-06-27. Retrieved 2011-07-14. 
  12. ^ Powers, Rick (October 9, 2002). "Interplay Delisted from NASDAQ". Nintendo World Report. Retrieved 2011-04-16. 
  13. ^ Thorsen, Tor (2003-12-08). "Interplay shuts down Black Isle Studios".  
  14. ^ Fallout' IP Goes To Bethesda Softworks"'". Totalgaming.net. 2007-04-13. Retrieved 2007-04-13. 
  15. ^ iTZKooPA (2007-08-15). "Interplay Almost Out Of Debt; Searching For 'Fallout'-based MMO Funding". Totalgaming.net. Retrieved 2007-08-22. 
  16. ^ Q&A: GOG.com's DRM-free downloadable games "GOG.com's Interplay catalogue--which includes classics like the Fallout series, MDK 1 and 2, the Descent series, Messiah, Giants: Citizen Kabuto. and Sacrifice." by GameSpot Staff on September 8, 2008
  17. ^ http://www.gog.com/game/descent_1_descent_2
  18. ^ http://store.steampowered.com/app/273570/
  19. ^ http://store.steampowered.com/app/273580/
  20. ^ Interplay Buys Freespace Rights For a Cool $7,500
  21. ^ "The Great Fallout Legal Battle Ends Without a Fallout MMO". Kotaku. Retrieved 10 January 2012. 
  22. ^ http://www.pacer.gov/
  23. ^ http://www.interplay.com/about/news.php
  24. ^ http://www.interplay.com/about/article.php?id=71
  25. ^ http://www.interplay.com/about/article.php?id=72
  26. ^ http://www.interplay.com/about/article.php?id=76
  27. ^ http://www.interplay.com/about/article.php?id=77
  28. ^ http://www.interplay.com/about/article.php?id=78
  29. ^ https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/606843645/freespace-tactics/posts/1102939
  30. ^ http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2015/04/descent-underground-kickstarter-crosses-600000-finish-line/
  31. ^ [4]
  32. ^ "14° East".  
  33. ^ "Internet Archive Wayback Machine". Web.archive.org. 1997-04-12. Archived from the original on 1997-04-12. Retrieved 2012-10-09. 
  34. ^ "Internet Archive Wayback Machine". Web.archive.org. 2002-09-21. Archived from the original on 2002-09-21. Retrieved 2012-10-09. 
  35. ^ [5]
  36. ^ "At the Deadline".  
  37. ^ "VR Sports".  
  38. ^ "A Shiny Look for Interplay".  
  39. ^ "Internet Archive Wayback Machine". Web.archive.org. 1998-12-12. Archived from the original on 1998-12-12. Retrieved 2012-10-09. 
  40. ^ [6]

References

See also

Studios

Games

Following the victory over Topware, Interplay began working on releasing a new version of Battle Chess for the PC. Battle Chess: Game of Kings, initially developed by Subdued Software, marked Interplay's first Kickstarter with a goal of $100,000. Ultimately, Interplay failed to reach the goal and the project was placed on hiatus following the closure of Subdued Software. Eventually, after handing the project off to a different studio, Olde Skuul, the project was finished and released on Steam.[23] Interplay, while also releasing the Descent series to Steam,[24][25][26][27][28] then began to develop FreeSpace Tactics, based on Descent: FreeSpace. Eventually creating another Kickstarter to fund the project, Interplay once again failed and cancelled the crowd funding operation.[29] Interplay's interest in the Descent series eventually resulted in them licensing assets of the title out to Descendent Studios. This resulted in Interplay's third Kickstarter, with the attention this time on a Descent prequel titled Descent: Underground. This marked the first successful Kickstarter for Interplay, with Descent Underground meeting it's goal in the final day of the operation.[30]

Kickstarters

In 2010, Topware Interactive revealed that they were developing Battle vs. Chess to be published by SouthPeak Games. Interplay sued them and won an injunction to stop sales in the United States. In 2012, Interplay won the case via default and a settlement for $200,000 plus interest was agreed upon on November 15, 2012 but according to PACER,[22] Interplay has yet to collect.

Bethesda Softworks sued Interplay in 2009, regarding the Fallout Online license and selling of Fallout Trilogy and sought an injunction to stop development of Fallout Online and sales of Fallout Trilogy. After several trials spanning almost three years, and in exchange for 2 million dollars, Interplay gave to Bethesda full rights for Fallout Online. Interplay's rights to sell and merchandise Fallout, Fallout 2 and Fallout Tactics: Brotherhood of Steel expired on December 31, 2013.[21]

Glutton Creeper Games sued Interplay in 2007 for breach of contract for a Fallout pen-and-paper role-playing game. GCG and Interplay settled the suit for an undisclosed amount in 2009.

Due to Interplay using the Dark Alliance Engine for Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel, Baldur's Gate: Dark Alliance II, and the GameCube version of the original Dark Alliance without consent from Snowblind Studios, the two studios were engaged in a legal conflict between 2003 and 2004. The lawsuit ended up determining that while Interplay would be allowed to work with materials already using the Dark Alliance Engine, they would not be able to use it for any future games. The lawsuit would have Interplay giving the Baldur's Gate trademark to Atari and the Dark Alliance trademark, albeit temporarily, to Snowblind Studios.

Lawsuits

In 2013, Interplay acquired the remaining rights to the FreeSpace franchise for $7,500 after THQ went to bankruptcy court.[20]

In September 2008 several games of Interplay's catalogue were re-released on the digital distribution service gog.com after being non-available in retail distribution for years, for instance Descent + Descent 2.[16][17] Descent 1 and 2 were also released on Steam in February 2014.[18][19]

Burdened with debt, Interplay faced bankruptcy again and was brought to bankruptcy court in 2006. In order to pay off creditors the company altered its licensing agreement with Bethesda Software and then sold the Fallout IP to Bethesda Softworks in 2007.[14][15] Interplay retained back-licensing rights to Fallout Online and the rights to sell the original Fallout games. Interplay began development of Fallout Online in 2007. Following a lengthy lawsuit by Bethesda Softworks, both sides agreed to a settlement where Interplay would receive 2 million dollars and the rights to sell the original Fallout games for a limited time.

Herve Caen took over the role of CEO to perform triage and made several unpopular but arguably necessary decisions to cancel various projects. Interplay then sold Shiny Entertainment and several game properties while closing BlueSky Software. Due to a low share price, Interplay's shares were delisted from the NASDAQ in 2002 and now trade on the over the counter (OTC) market.[12] On December 8, 2003, Interplay laid off the entire Black Isle Studios staff.[13]

By 2001, Titus Software completed its acquisition of majority control of Interplay. Immediately afterwards, they shed most of Interplays publisher functions and signed a long-term agreement under which Vivendi Universal would publish Interplay's games. Interplay founder Brian Fargo eventually departed to found InXile Entertainment as Fargo's plan to change Interplay's main focus from PC gaming to console gaming failed.[11]

Interplay continued to endure losses under Brian Fargo due to increased competition, less than stellar returns on Interplay’s sports division and the lack of console titles. This forced Interplay to seek additional funding two years later with an investment from Titus Software, a Paris-based game company. Titus agreed to invest 25 million dollars in Interplay and a few months later this was followed up by an additional 10 million investment.[10] Despite releasing critically acclaimed games such as Descent 3 and FreeSpace 2 the company then reported several additional quarters of losses.

By 1998 the financial situation at Interplay was dire and the company was in bankruptcy court. To avert bankruptcy Interplay went public in order to raise capital and pay off debt. Interplay was successful in its public offering and avoided bankruptcy. Shares were sold on the NASDAQ Stock Exchange and the Interplay changed its name to Interplay Entertainment Corp.

Interplay Entertainment

In 1997, Interplay developed and released Loaded and the fighting game series ClayFighter and the games by Shiny Entertainment, MDK and Wild 9.

Interplay started publishing its own games, starting with Neuromancer and Battle Chess, in 1988, and then moved on to publish and distribute games from other companies, while continuing internal game development. In 1995, Interplay published the hit game Descent, developed by startup Parallax Software. Interplay published several Star Trek video games, including Star Trek: 25th Anniversary for computers and for Nintendo and Star Trek: Judgment Rites. These games had later CD-ROM editions released with the original Star Trek cast providing voices. Interplay also published Starfleet Academy and Klingon Academy games, and Starfleet Command series, beginning with Star Trek: Starfleet Command. Another game, Star Trek: Secret of Vulcan Fury, was in development in the late 1990s but was never completed and much of its staff laid off due to budgetary cuts prompted by various factors. In 1995, after several years of delays, Interplay finally published its role-playing game Stonekeep. Other PC games released during the mid-to-late 1990s games included Carmageddon, Fragile Allegiance, Hardwar and Redneck Rampage.

Interplay's parser was developed by Fargo and an associate and in one version understands about 250 nouns and 200 verbs as well as prepositions and indirect objects.[9] In 1986, Tass Times in Tonetown followed. Interplay made a name for itself as a quality developer of role-playing video games with the three-part series The Bard's Tale (1985–1988), critically acclaimed Wasteland (1988) and Dragon Wars (1989). All of them were published by Electronic Arts.

[8][5]

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