vivendi-games posts

Interview: CD Projekt's co-founder talks GoG.com, The Witcher 2 and more

There are quite a few PC game download services to choose from but none of them are quite like GoG.com. For over a year now the service, started by The Witcher creators CD Projekt, have offered gamers a way to buy some of the best PC games ever made in a DRM-free environment and with pricing that makes them extremely easy to afford. Over the past year the service has added more and more games and publishers to the mix and even added games that no other download site can (legally) offer to consumers.

As we first reported earlier this morning CD Projekt has has officially announced that GoG.com will begin to offer older PC games from Activision's library of titles. Those titles now include games from Activision's merger with Vivendi Games to form Activision Blizzard. Before today's announcement, Big Download got a chance to ask some questions to CD Projekt's co-founder Marcin Iwinski about this development and GoG.com's future. We even managed to sneak in a question about CD Projekt's next big game project, The Witcher 2.

Trailer for Irrational Games' canceled Division 9 revealed

Yesterday during the debut episode of the Irrational Games' podcast, the development team revealed they had once worked on a zombie strategic shooter called Division 9. Now Game Informer has released an actual trailer showing off gameplay from the now canceled title which was being made in the mid-2000s

The Game Informer article goes into more detail on Division 9 and how it would have combined shooting with strategic elements like base building. The game was about to be bought by Vivendi Games but unfortunately for us Irrational then got bought by Take Two Interactive who apparently didn't want to take on the game which makes us the biggest loser. Irrational Games' head man Ken Levine states at the start of the trailer that Division 9 is the one game among the ones they created and canceled that they wish they had made. You can check out the nearly 5 minute trailer on the Game Informer web page.

Irrational reveals canceled zombie game Division 9

As part of the Irrational Games relaunch, they also launched the first episode of their official podcast called Irrational Behavior. The first episode talks about ideas for games that died and during the podcast Irrational team members revealed plans for a zombie tactical shooter that ultimately was never made.

The game was called Division 9 and was first pitched in the early 2000s to the now defunct Vivendi Games as a possible new direction for the SWAT series (Irrational had developed the fourth game in the series from the publisher). The game was prototyped as a kind of shooter with some strategic elements. While Vivendi passed on the game, Irrational head man Ken Levine said they actually sold Division 9 to an unnamed publisher. However, for reasons that were not entirely made clear in the podcast, the game was canceled. Irrational went on to be bought by Take Two Interactive and of course made the original BioShock. The web site plans to reveal assets from Division 9 on January 22.

By the way, the podcast is definitely NSFW so listen with headphones. Perhaps while playing Darksiders or Line Rider if that floats your boat.

Lords of the Realm I and II added to GoG.com


As we have reported earlier this month, UK-based developer Rebellion has purchased the rights to several former Vivendi Games properties and has slowly been releasing the original games for people to buy via digital download. Today the GoG.com web site has added yet another property of Rebellion's, Lords of the Realm.

This particular release is the Royal Editon which contains the first two games in the historical RTS series along with the expansion pack for Lords of the Realm II. The GoG.com edition comes with free downloadable manuals for the games, a reference and a free map of the game's setting. You can download and purchase the DRM-free game now for $5.99.

More former Sierra/Vivendi Games show up on Steam


Last week we reported that Rebellion had bought a number of former Vivendi Games properties from Activision Blizzard but it seems Activision has kept the rights to a number of those games as well. Today five former Sierra/Vivendi Games properties are available to download via Steam under the Activision publishing banner.

Among the games listed are the Space Quest Collection and the King's Quest Collection, each collecting the classic Sierra adventure game series. Also included are two more recent downloadable titles, Aces of the Galaxy and 3D Ultra Minigolf Adventures. Finally the hardcore first person shooter Timeshift has also been added. All five titles are available for 25 percent off their normal Steam prices until June 30.

Exclusive: Rebellion CEO reveals plans for new entries in former Vivendi Games series


The merger of Vivendi Games with Activision in 2008 to form Activision Blizzard left a ton of former Vivendi Games properties looking for new owners. Many of them found new homes with various publishers. One of them was UK-based developer Rebellion, best known for their work on the first PC Aliens Vs Predator game. Currently the developer is working on a new AVP game for publisher Sega along with the first person shooter Rogue Warrior for publisher Bethesda Softworks.

Last week, the DRM-free download site GoG.com revealed they were adding new games owned by Rebellion to their catalog. What wasn't mentioned at the time of the announcement was that the games were actually former Vivendi Games titles that were not previously owned or developed by Rebellion. That got our curiosity up and we decided to contact Rebellion CEO Jason Kingsley to get more information.Kingsley confirmed to us that they now own the rights to release several former Vivendi Games titles. You can check out the breakdown after the jump:

Rebellion joins GOG.com; adds former Vivendi Games titles to library


GoG.com's latest addition to their DRM-free game library comes from UK-based Rebellion who are mostly known as developers of titles like the original Aliens Vs Predator and its upcoming follow up. However it appears that Rebellion has also purchased the rights to a number of older game titles from the now defunct Vivendi Games in yet another consequence of the whole Activision Blizzard merger last year.

Via Rebellion, GoG.com is now offering the 2000 released RTS game Ground Control (and its expansion) for just $5.99. Ground Control was one of the first true 3D RTS games released and comes from Massive Entertainment who later developed World In Conflict. Also, GoG.com has added Evil Genius, the 2004 released strategy-sim game from the now defunct Elixir Studios, for just $9.99. Rebellion and GoG.com plan to add other titles from the former Vivendi Games library, including Empire Earth, in the coming weeks.

Oh and head over to our sister site Joystiq for a chance to win a free GoG.com game code.

PC version of Ghostbusters delayed in Europe; still set for June in US


And the topsy turvy publishing duties of the Ghostbusters game continues. The continuation of the comedy action movie series was first announced by Vivendi Games, and then picked up by Atari after the newly merged Activision Blizzard decided they didn't want it anymore. Now Europeans will deal with another publisher for the game, Sony.

In a very last minute decision, Sony (who actually owns the Ghostbusters franchise) has finally figured out that, hey, maybe they can directly publish the game themselves . . . at least in Europe. Sony will now publish the PS2 and PS3 versions of the Ghostbusters game this June, with the PSP version due out this autumn. And what about all the other platforms, including the PC version? While details are vague, MCV reports that Atari will publish the game for the rest of its planned platforms later this year. Atari has sent over a press release confirming that the game will still be released for the PC in the US on June 16.

Gallery: Ghostbusters

Valve sues Activision Blizzard over royalty payments

When Activision merged with Vivendi Games last year to form Activision Blizzard it took on all of the burdens of both companies. Now it appears one of Vivendi Games' issues has come back to light as Valve has now sued Activision Blizzard over an award it won back in 2002 from Vivendi Games.

Game Politics reports that in 2002, Valve won a judgement against Vivendi Games over licensing of Valve's games in cyber-cafes. The original amount was $2,391,932. However Activision Blizzard only got around to paying Valve last week and then it was only $1,967,796. Activision Blizzard's side felt that Valve had already been paid the remaining $424,136. Naturally Valve doesn't see it that way and the lawsuit was filed on Tuesday. Activision Blizzard is expected to countersue Valve.

Codemasters publishing new Leisure Suit Larry game; coming in April


A few weeks ago we reported on rumors that Codemasters was planning to publish Leisure Suit Larry: Box Office Bust, the latest game in the adult-themed adventure series. The title was a previous Vivendi Games release but the merger of that company with Activision to form Activision Blizzard left that title, like so many other orphened.

Now it looks like the Codemasters rumors are in fact true. While the publisher has yet to send out a press release the game is now listed on the company's official web site as coming out this April for the PC, Xbox 360 and PS3 with a "M" rating from the ESRB. Develoed by Team 17, the game as you playing the original Larry's nephew Larry Lovage as he helps his uncle in the movie business. According to the header on the Codemasters game page the new Larry title will be handled by Codemasters' casual game label Funsta.
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