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Gearbox Acquires Homeworld

Jonathan Lester
Gearbox Software, Homeworld, Relic Entertainment, Strategy games

Gearbox Acquires Homeworld

Hints At Digital Re-Releases

The few remaining scraps of THQ's licences and properties were auctioned off last week, and the highest bidders are starting to come out of the woodwork.

So let's start with the most surprising of the lot. Homeworld, the beloved spacebound RTS, has been picked up by none other than Gearbox Software.

This might seem like an odd fit for a studio that has historically concentrated on shooters, but it transpires that Creative Director Brian Martel "personally spearheaded the acquisition" as a massive fan of the series. Gearbox shelled out a cool $1.35 million for the IP, crushing a plucky indie dev who managed to scrape several thousand together through crowdfunding.

We're amazed that SEGA didn't defend the Homeworld property, since they currently own original creators Relic Entertainment, but it seems that space strategy just isn't on their radar.

In a new statement, Gearbox pledges to "preserve and assemble the purest form of the original acclaimed and beloved games, Homeworld and Homeworld 2, with the intent of making them accessible on today's leading digital platforms." We hope that means GOG at the very least, if not iPad versions, Vita versions... mmm. Yes.

However, when it comes to creating a sequel, we can't help but worry about Gearbox' track record when it comes to handling someone else's IP. When they create their own franchises from birth, we get things like Brothers In Arms and Borderlands. Otherwise, we get DNF and Aliens: Colonial Marines. With luck, they'll concentrate on HD re-releases for the time being, and in doing so learn about what made the franchise so enduring.

Add a comment3 comments
Breadster  Apr. 23, 2013 at 13:19

Not particularly happy with gearbox getting that license. I'd much prefer Relic to have it.

JonLester  Apr. 23, 2013 at 14:00

It does feel like an odd choice for Gearbox, series fan or no. That said, with any luck, they'll prioritise getting re-releases or even HD versions out before looking to make their own mark on the franchise, and learn a few lessons as they go.

X10  Apr. 24, 2013 at 21:06

Gearbox only got it to profit from making digital releases on other platforms. While it's not a bad thing to have these games available on other platforms I don't think many people will be overly excited enough to purchase it in the same quantities the original sold at.
And does the Homeworld series really need an 'HD' makeover? It still looked okay when I played it last year. If they make some other updates then that's different, but they won't be adding anything beneficial by 'polishing' it in my view.

Shame, I would have liked to see TeamPixel make a sequel, it's been long enough for a sequel to happen. Ah well.

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