THQ is no more: the bankrupt publisher and developer auctioned off its assets in U.S. Bankruptcy Court today. Though the court must still approve the sales, a letter from THQ's CEO (which was passed to Kotaku by an employee) reveals the bidders, which include Sega, Ubisoft, Deep Silver, Crytek, and Take-Two, and the THQ franchises and studios they'll acquire. Below is a breakdown of who's getting what, and what led to today's sale.
Who's getting what? Based on what we know right now...
Company of Heroes and Warhammer 40,000 developer Relic Entertainment is going to Sega.
Saints Row developer Volition, Inc. and the Metro series are going to Koch Media (Deep Silver).
The Homefront franchise is going to Crytek.
THQ Montreal and the South Park license are going to Ubisoft.
Evolve, a game in development by Turtle Rock Studios (which worked on Left 4 Dead), is going to Take-Two Interactive.
THQ will "make every effort to find appropriate buyers" for its remaining assets, such as Darksiders developer Vigil Games.
On November 13, 2012, THQ announced that it had defaulted on a $50 million loan. Its subsequent Humble THQ Bundle raised about $5 million for THQ, charities, and the Humble Bundle organizers, but it wasn't enough: the company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on December 19th.
Bankruptcy isn't necessarily the end—Chapter 11 allows the debtor to stay in control of the company under court oversight—but things didn't go as planned. THQ expected to sell itself in whole to a private equity firm called Clearlake Capital Group, but THQ's creditors and the bankruptcy court rejected that proposal earlier this month, which led to today's piece by piece auction.