Atari closes Eden Games, looks to mobile future

Atari closes Eden Games, looks to mobile future

Eden Games' Test Drive Unlimited 2 was not an unalloyed success, and has likely contributed to Atari's decision to close the studio.

Atari has officially closed the doors of development subsidiary Eden Games, following the report of a massive decrease in revenue.

In the company's latest financial filings, Atari admitted that revenue for the financial year hit just $51.3 million compared to $77.8 million in the previous year. While losses were slashed from $8m in financial year 2011 to $4.8 million this year, thanks to cost-cutting measures and the dropping of selected subsidiary business units, things are still clearly tough at the troubled company.

Things aren't as tough for Atari as they are for subsidiary Eden Games, however: the development house's parent company has decided to formally close its doors and sell off its assets.

Eden Games is the developer behind Atari's flawed reboot of the Alone in the Dark franchise and the Test Drive Unlimited series of open-world drive-'em-ups, which while technically impressive disappointed with bad acting, a poor script and a lack of attention to detail in its latest incarnation. The first game in the series sold well, but its sequel did not - giving Atari cause to sack the majority of the company's staff last year.

Despite running on a skeleton crew, Eden Games has been limping along - but its time has finally come to an end. All operations have officially ceased, with Atari seeking a buyer for the studio's assets.

The company has announced that it has sold off its share of GameOne, a French TV channel which airs competitive gaming alongside anime and other geek clichés, for $7.6 million - without which its financial report would make for serious sombre reading.

To reassure investors that it has things under control, Atari has announced its plans for the coming financial year: a renewed focus on mobile and casual gaming. Following the success of the company's existing mobile titles, including Asteroid Gunner and Atari's Greatest Hits, the company is investing further money in bringing both back-catalogue titles and new IP to smartphones and tablets.

That renewed focus will likely come at a cost to the company's PC and mainstream console efforts, however, with Atari's financial report strangely silent on any plans for those platforms.


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Bauul 11th May 2012, 11:53 Quote
I'd forgotten Atari even still made games. Never nice to see a big gaming company struggle though.
AngelOfRage 11th May 2012, 12:08 Quote
Shame we do not have a gaming channel in the UK? I mean some of the channels deep in the Sky guide are so obscure, you'd have though a gaming channel could be slotted in. (a loans company with it's own channel?!)
Madness_3d 11th May 2012, 12:17 Quote
TDU was amazing :( Sad to see Eden go but it was written on the wall from before TDU2 came out. Hope they leave the servers up at least I like to pop back on both TDU 1 & 2 because sometimes it's nice to just cruise round a Hawaiian island in a convertible Ferrari :)

In my opinion the problem with TDU2 was they tried to turn it into the Sims, Any developer with his head screwed on must have known it was never going to work out and they should focus on what made TDU1 successful but I'm sure the decision was probably made by a board of people who have never played a video game in their life...
TheDodoKiller 11th May 2012, 12:43 Quote
Are we certain that Eden Games are closed? Taking a look at their website, they posted job positions on the 5th, One would think they had some inclination that they'd be closing as to not advertise new positions.
greigaitken 11th May 2012, 12:51 Quote
i like racing games, i didnt buy this. It gave impression it was driving sim but the reviews said it had meh physics. tweaking those handling algorithms properly would be biggest improvement to overall quality. any company who makes anything that is meh deserves to fail, make me something AMAZING then you can have all my money.
Vo0Ds 11th May 2012, 13:01 Quote
I've put a fair bit of time into TDU2, they've just recently released DLC to include motorbikes and some more classic cars.

The biggest problem I have with the game is the poor console graphics and the disappointing engine noises. I don't know why the feature to customise your house (and others) ever seen the light of day, time miss-spent. Hopefully the servers stay up for a while yet, but it's depressing knowing it will definitely never get better.
V3ctor 11th May 2012, 13:22 Quote
180h in it... Casino and all... I like it although it has poor physics... And I just buy cars and houses, I don't cruise around shopping for clothes, or changing my dummy with plastic surgery...
It's a good game, but was poor compared to TDU
Gareth Halfacree 11th May 2012, 14:18 Quote
Originally Posted by TheDodoKiller
Are we certain that Eden Games are closed? Taking a look at their website, they posted job positions on the 5th, One would think they had some inclination that they'd be closing as to not advertise new positions.
Certain as certain can be. To quote Atari's official financial filing: 'Eden Games has been accounted for as “Discontinued Operations” under IFRS 5, as the Company has started a divestiture process of the studio.

'The net income of Eden Games business, in the process of being disposed as of March 31, 2012, is reported on the line “discontinued operations” as of April 1, 2010. 2010/2011 and 2011/2012 Group revenues and current operating income exclude Eden’s business.'
Fizzban 11th May 2012, 19:43 Quote
Bah! another one bites the dust. Sucks.
I Greenman v2 I 11th May 2012, 20:09 Quote
Shame really as I enjoyed TDU 1 and 2. Agree with others though, its sad to see these companies having to close down.
thehippoz 13th May 2012, 16:36 Quote
impossible to avoid the snuffaluffagus.. they've got the money and will pay for bad gaming- because most people have laptops.. so all you have to do is create something were they can use thier imagination, like that game age of atlantis comes to mind

there's people who write spreadsheets on the game.. the attacks aren't even shown.. it's turn based gameplay- sort of like playing real time chess meets open pvp.. the genius is the guy who wrote it, charges for everything that will give you advantages over other players, and opens new servers regularly to keep people racing to be on top.. there's guys who spend hundreds on that game to get all the dragons- and he releases new dragons regularly.. each one badder than the last- it must take him like 2 minutes to make a new dragon..

the thing is the game itself works like an old arcade machine back in the day, stick a quarter in- depending how good you are.. that's how long you'll last.. it's pure genius.. it must take him like a month to write these games- noticed he had several, all basically the same.. one was using dragons, bowmen, ect.. the others mafia gangsters

you don't have to have a big studio to make money.. you just need to tap into that market- it's huge..
modfx 13th May 2012, 23:18 Quote
Originally Posted by AngelOfRage
Shame we do not have a gaming channel in the UK? I mean some of the channels deep in the Sky guide are so obscure, you'd have though a gaming channel could be slotted in. (a loans company with it's own channel?!)

Fair point, there are some odd ones.

Did you mean something centred around gaming in general (consoles, bit of PC, industry news, reviews, previews etc.) or an actual E-sports channel?
Baz 14th May 2012, 09:59 Quote
Can't make proper games? Quick, re-prioritise to mobile platforms and make peggle, angry-birds and draw-something rip-offs!
ev1lm1nd666 14th May 2012, 15:19 Quote
Well if anyone remembers the state TDU2 was in at launch, the writing was on the wall a long time ago. the game was unfinished (1Gb patch anyone), the physics were atrocious with more time put into making the casino than the driving. It's just a shame they couldn't be bothered to sort out the main failings in the game as i reckon thousands of more people would have bought the game.
The_EXorcist 15th May 2012, 07:13 Quote
TDU2 would have been great if they actually fixed the driving, it was a massive point of contention on their forums. Almost no one had FFB for their wheels, handling of cars was very basic. They never fixed the problems from the beta, and instead focused on adding extra clothes\furniture and the like.

When a racing\driving game does not allow you to Race properly or drive enjoyably it will fail at selling. This they did not seem to understand, even with all the feedback from the community
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