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38 Studios shelled out $133 million prior to shuttering

2012-07-30 12:30:00·  2 minute read   ·  Kyle MacGregor@kylemactiger
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The demise of 38 Studios has been a well chronicled one, but perhaps you're interested in knowing exactly how much money the now defunct developer used prior to shuttering earlier this year. According to WPRI, that figure exceeds $133 million. 

In the years between the company's founding in 2006 and the release of Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, Curt Schilling & Co. shelled out over $118 million before ever making a dime. While the role-playing game sold 1.3 million copies, an impressive launch for a new IP, it wasn't enough for the Rhode Island-based developer who had leveraged the future of the company against naive expectations of the title being an absolute blockbuster.


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While Rhode Island state loans and Schilling's personal wealth paid for the lion's share of costs, Electronic Arts also provided an advance of $28.6 million for the development of Reckoning. Unfortunately, in order to repay the maligned publisher, sales would likely have needed to surpass 2 million.

Though famed Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter didn't think that number was unreasonable, believing it could sell between 2 and 3 million, the disparity between expectations and reality compounded by the $104.5 million spent on research and development for Project Copernicus sent the company into a tailspin.

A continued relationship with EA cooled after Star Wars: The Old Republic received a lukewarm reception, souring the publisher on the idea of further investment in massively multiplayer titles. Attempts were made to partner with Take-Two on a Reckoning sequel, but ultimately talks fell through. Saul Kaplan, former executive director of the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation, believes another $60 million would have been necessary to complete development of 38's ethereal MMO.

38 Studios' spending topped $133, documents reveal [WPRI via GameSpot]

 

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