20th Century Fox’s games division is about to be sold, putting games like Marvel Strike Force and Alien: Blackout in jeopardy.
Disney has never liked video games. They experimented a bit in the 90s, with the likes of the soon-to-be remastered Aladdin and The Lion King proving very popular at the time, but as gaming evolved Disney quickly lost interest.
Occasionally they published games themselves, or experimented with having their own in-house developers, but mostly they just farmed out their licences to other random companies – as they’re doing now with EA and Star Wars.
The wait for any decent Marvel tie-ins on consoles has gone on seemingly forever but although that has finally started to happen it doesn’t seem to be translating to anything else.
Disney acquired FoxNet, 20th Century Fox’s two-year-old game division, when they bought everything else to do with the company, but according to Bloomberg they’ve already decided to sell it.
Who will buy it and what will happen to current games, such as the highly successful mobile title Marvel Strike Force – which raked in $150 million (£121m) in its first year – is unclear.
After mobile game Alien: Blackout, FoxNet was also working on a new Alien-themed shooter. But there’s no indication on whether that will survive the sale.
Predator: Hunting Grounds should be safe though as it’s being published by Sony, as an exclusive, and is due out next year.
As usual, it was CEO Bob Iger who made the decision, with other execs arguing to keep FoxNet.
‘We’ve just decided that the best place for us to be in that space is licensing and not publishing,’ said Iger in regards to video games.
It’s worth remembering that Disney also owns LucasArts (acquired in a similar, accidental, fashion to FoxNet) and all their franchises, such as Monkey Island and Grim Fandago, but they’ve never shown any interest in doing anything with them and they probably never will.
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