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Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges

An update to the Kickstarter that was launched last month by indie developer teamPixel in an effort to fund the purchase of the Homeworld IP announces they have been outbid for the rights to the sci-fi RTS series (thanks GameSpot). It is not known at this point who now owns the property, but since it isn't them, they say they will be refunding the over $50K in pledges they received. They also say that those who supported their efforts will get credits in their upcoming Homeworld-inspired RTS game, which will now obviously center on a new IP. Here's word:

Homeworld will escape the THQ bankruptcy to a new home, however, that home will not be with teamPixel, LLC. The auction for the Homeworld license ended April 15, 2013, and while we reached qualified bidder status for the bankruptcy auction, we were unable to raise the necessary funds to remain competitive against the other parties at the auction. We hope you will join us in supporting Homeworld's new owners in building a future for the franchise. We anticipate an announcement of the new owner to be made within a couple weeks and for the sale to be finalized around mid-May. Words cannot describe how honored we are to have been supported by so many in the community.

As promised, we are offering full refunds to all of our generous donors. To facilitate this process, we've established a website where you can verify that we have properly recorded all of your contributions, supply us with any special instructions for your donation, and track your refund. As a special thanks, we would like to offer each and every donor a special credit in our upcoming space RTS game. Yes, this means we will still be moving forward with our own Homeworld-inspired space RTS, but under our own intellectual property. We hope all of you will stay in touch and follow us during the production of our game.

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38. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 22, 2013, 17:11 Fantaz
 
Gearbox trolled Kickstarter  
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37. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 20, 2013, 12:44 eRe4s3r
 
Mhhh, well let's just hope Homeworld 3 will get made.  
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36. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 20, 2013, 08:10 Dev
 
Clancy wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 17:35:
First off, it wasn't $50K, *if* you believe the kickstarter for homeworld. They said they had additional funding. I am guessing it went for $100K minimum.
They had an indiegogo campaign too, as well as direct paypal donations.
link
Apparently that campaign was another $13k (an example of the power of KS vs IGG). They may also have had some personal assets too. Or maybe they tried to lowball it so they could keep some money, who knows.

I'm surprised they are refunding the money actually.
eRe4s3r wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 10:13:
So how can we NOT know who owns the IP? If anything the one who bought it should blast the fanfares and hype us "We will do Homeworld 3" .. but this? This is just weird. No info at all?
The bidding companies would have had to prepare marketing campaigns ahead of time, to be able to have enough time to have it ready to go on that day. Plus if its not fully finalized by the court, it would look pretty embarrassing if something stopped it from happening.
More typically in recent times from what I've seen, hype machines aren't fully revved up until a game is around 1 year from release (or 2 with delays). Stuff is done quietly in the background for years often.

Now if an indie type company such as that KS bidding group got the bid, they'd probably blog about it the next day. But if a big company got it, they may keep it quiet for a while.

This comment was edited on Apr 20, 2013, 08:15.
 
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35. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 19:23 Burrito of Peace
 
killer_roach wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 12:12:
Burrito of Peace wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 10:34:
In my fantasy world, Creative Assembly bought the IP and have decided to put a temporary hold on developing the Total War series after Rome II so they can work on Homeworld III.

Remember that Sega owns both The Creative Assembly and Relic, the developers of the original Homeworld games. They're the heavy favorite to be the buyer.

Damn, I had forgotten that Sega owns Relic now!

So, please please please please please please let it be Sega who bought it.
 
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34. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 19:15 killer_roach
 
entr0py wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 18:49:
The only good news is since it was a court-supervised auction, we'll know the results in mid may when the court finalizes it.

Gamespot Story


I'm going to guess Sega picked it up. It's just not worth as much to anyone else.

Agreed. The value-add for Sega to hold it is probably more than it is for anyone else. The only other possibility would be if Sega hadn't qualified to participate in the auction and a holding company decided to bid on it with the hopes of licensing it out to them, knowing full well the value of the license in the hands of Relic or CA.
 
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33. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 18:49 entr0py
 
The only good news is since it was a court-supervised auction, we'll know the results in mid may when the court finalizes it.

Gamespot Story


I'm going to guess Sega picked it up. It's just not worth as much to anyone else.
 
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32. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 17:35 Clancy
 
ViRGE wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 10:19:
eRe4s3r wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 10:13:
So how can we NOT know who owns the IP? If anything the one who bought it should blast the fanfares and hype us "We will do Homeworld 3" .. but this? This is just weird. No info at all?
Who would even pay more than $50K for Homeworld? Sure it was an interesting series, but having been dead for a decade there's not much value to it right now.
First off, it wasn't $50K, *if* you believe the kickstarter for homeworld. They said they had additional funding. I am guessing it went for $100K minimum.

I am sure that once the court documents are released, we will see who got what, but I have no idea how long that takes.

The game was nice, but, you can make the same type of game cheaper than it would have been to purchase the name, which is why that kickstarter campaign seemed to be really shady.
At least everyone is getting refunds.
 
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31. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 15:28 dj LiTh
 
I'm glad someone else (anyone else) bought it. Now we actually have a chance of seeing something become of the franchise.  
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30. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 14:43 jdreyer
 
ViRGE wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 10:19:
eRe4s3r wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 10:13:
So how can we NOT know who owns the IP? If anything the one who bought it should blast the fanfares and hype us "We will do Homeworld 3" .. but this? This is just weird. No info at all?
Who would even pay more than $50K for Homeworld? Sure it was an interesting series, but having been dead for a decade there's not much value to it right now.

That series holds a lot of nostalgia for RTS fans, and nothing like it has been done since, possibly excepting Sins of a Solar Empire, but even that has quite a few differences.
 
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"It's just a bunch of mystic bovine scatology to me." - 1badmf
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29. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 14:42 jdreyer
 
Ozmodan wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 09:53:
Ten to one whoever bought the IP won't make a sequel or if they do it won't be very good. I wish teamPixel the best, hope they come up with a great game.

Yeah, as long as you get the word out that you're doing a Homeworld-inspired game, you should be able to get funding as long as you can show you're competent enough to deliver a solid product. And the IP Kickstarter stunt got them tons of publicity.
 
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28. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 13:29 killer_roach
 
Verno wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 13:26:
killer_roach wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 13:18:
To put it another way, EA is to business what Peter Molyneux is to development - overpromising, then underdelivering.

For sure, look at this SC patch list that is weeks over due. An alarming number of items are just basically buildings and functions that literally didn't work and are now being completed or implemented properly.

As usual EA is its own worst enemy.

I'd agree. I mean, I'm probably one of the bigger defenders of the major publishers around here, and have even defended EA on more than a few occasions. But most of that falls under one line of thinking - "at least somebody out there is liking it."

Here... not so much. It's a lose-lose situation for everyone involved, a pretty gross mismatch of audience to sales model, and really a fundamental violation of what I would consider to be the first rule of commercial game design - make a game people want to play, and keep playing, and you can figure out how to get money from them as you go.
 
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27. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 13:26 Verno
 
killer_roach wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 13:18:
To put it another way, EA is to business what Peter Molyneux is to development - overpromising, then underdelivering.

For sure, look at this SC patch list that is weeks over due. An alarming number of items are just basically buildings and functions that literally didn't work and are now being completed or implemented properly.

As usual EA is its own worst enemy. I used to think people here were a bit harsh on them but after years of this crap it doesn't take a genius to see every bit of criticism has been justified ten fold.

Anyways back to worrying about who got the Homeworld IP!
 
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26. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 13:24 RollinThundr
 
killer_roach wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 12:26:
Creston wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 12:20:
EA bought the Homeworld IP and is going to turn it into a 3rd person shooter with QTE Microtransactions.

Creston

I highly doubt EA is the buyer. They've been reasonably quiet on the acquisition front lately, the IP doesn't really hold much value with their development studios, and it'd be just as easy for them to create a similar game from scratch without paying for the name. Seeing as their new CEO seems allergic to spending money, after all...

Well you see this would give the usual suspects another reason to hate on EA for the sake of it, so I'm sure they have their finger's crossed.
 
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25. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 13:18 killer_roach
 
Verno wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 13:14:
When you're shipping glorified advertisements DLC to the game before fixing the utterly broken simulation aspects people wanted in the face of the most disastrous launch we've seen in the industry then yeah, I would say that's going to backfire a bit on them.

Exactly.

Hell, if them selling a few more ads would've given the developers the time to fix some stuff that should've been caught in testing, then I'm all for it. But as it is, it's simply a "for what?" situation. Nobody really benefits - EA's sales drop off, gamers get even more pissed off, and the advertisers are miffed that they're not getting the audience EA promised them.

To put it another way, EA is to business what Peter Molyneux is to development - overpromising, then underdelivering.
 
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24. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 13:14 Verno
 
killer_roach wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 13:01:
I'm thinking they parceled out the advert features thinking that it would continually be adding something new to the game, but when people are more wanting the game to work as expected, that's backfiring on them.

When you're shipping glorified advertisements DLC to the game before fixing the utterly broken simulation aspects people wanted in the face of the most disastrous launch we've seen in the industry then yeah, I would say that's going to backfire a bit on them.
 
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23. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 13:01 killer_roach
 
Verno wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 12:43:
You underestimate EA, this is the company that shipped Toothpaste "DLC" for the still utterly busted SimCity. Microtransactions on the microtransactions will be the wave of the future.

A lot of that doesn't hardly take much effort, though - I mean, the process of doing stuff like that is pretty much the same as a newspaper or magazine selling ad space (and I wouldn't be surprised if some of EA's marketing people came from print publishing originally, seeing the DLC released so far).

I'm thinking they parceled out the advert features thinking that it would continually be adding something new to the game, but when people are more wanting the game to work as expected, that's backfiring on them. The idea wasn't, in the grand scheme of things, completely awful, just their execution was (additionally, probably should space those DLCs out with some actual proper content or feature additions just to avoid burnout or people looking at them as a cynical cash-in - but to expect sense from marketing people is to expect my chair to start singing opera).
 
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22. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 12:43 Verno
 
Krael wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 12:26:
Creston wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 12:20:
EA bought the Homeworld IP and is going to turn it into a 3rd person shooter with QTE Microtransactions.

Creston

Ha! New revenue stream! Microtransactions to bypass the QTE's. Microtransactions to bypass the advertisements for x seconds, etc....

You underestimate EA, this is the company that shipped Toothpaste "DLC" for the still utterly busted SimCity. Microtransactions on the microtransactions will be the wave of the future.
 
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21. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 12:26 killer_roach
 
Creston wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 12:20:
EA bought the Homeworld IP and is going to turn it into a 3rd person shooter with QTE Microtransactions.

Creston

I highly doubt EA is the buyer. They've been reasonably quiet on the acquisition front lately, the IP doesn't really hold much value with their development studios, and it'd be just as easy for them to create a similar game from scratch without paying for the name. Seeing as their new CEO seems allergic to spending money, after all...
 
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20. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 12:26 Krael
 
Creston wrote on Apr 19, 2013, 12:20:
EA bought the Homeworld IP and is going to turn it into a 3rd person shooter with QTE Microtransactions.

Creston

Ha! New revenue stream! Microtransactions to bypass the QTE's. Microtransactions to bypass the advertisements for x seconds, etc....

 
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19. Re: Homeworld IP Sold; Kickstarter Refunding Pledges Apr 19, 2013, 12:20 Creston
 
EA bought the Homeworld IP and is going to turn it into a 3rd person shooter with QTE Microtransactions.

Creston
 
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