news\ Feb 3, 2012 at 12:08 pm

THQ looking at Xbox 720, PS4 to help establish new IP

Many publishers, including the recently troubled THQ, are hoping the arrival of next-gen consoles from Sony and Microsoft will help pave the way for a "transformation".

THQ, which is one of the larger developers facing troubled times, is hoping the inevitable release of the Xbox 720 or PlayStation 4 provides an opportunity to "transform" itself, as the arrival of new consoles could provide the "best time" to establish new IPs.

Speaking to investors, THQ CEO Brian Farrell explained a new console from Microsoft or Sony represents both a risk and possible reward opportunity for the struggling company.

"I agree that as we approach a potential new console cycle it does introduce an element of risk. Another way to think about that is it does present a tremendous amount of opportunity," he said.

He added: "The best time to establish new IP is near the beginning of a new cycle and we think that can provide a tremendous opportunity for the transformation of THQ."

Of course, the term next-gen doesn't only apply to Microsoft and Sony.  Nintendo is releasing the Wii U later this year, in which THQ has plans to launch several titles including Darksiders II and Metro: Last Light.  And Just last month it was uncovered from a LinkedIn profile that THQ has possible plans to release two additional currently unannounced Wii U titles

It could very well be that THQ is just as much looking forward to the launch of the Wii U to establish new IPs as it is the Xbox 720 and PS4.

Rumors began swirling last month that THQ was cancelling their 2014 video game lineup and possibly putting itself up for sale.  These rumors were quickly denied by the company, but poor sales in 2011 have definitely left the company in a bad position.

Having to rethink its business strategy, THQ promised to dramatically reduce their commitment to the kids' boxed games sector and will focus on the more recent successes they've had, most notably with Saints Row: The Third and WWE '12.

THQ has since laid of hundreds of workers including members from the failed uDraw team and many who work on kid's licensed titles.  This week, the cuts continued as the company reported a restructuring process that will lay off 240 employees and reduce the CEO's pay by 50%.

Obviously, looking forward, THQ can't rely on the continued success of past franchises.  Eventually they will need to create new IPs and they are hoping the Wii U and next-gen Xbox or PlayStation will provide them an opportunity to do so.  If they could manage to create a solid launch title for either the Wii U, PlayStation 4, or Xbox 720 then it could help them not only short term, but also help them establish a brand new franchise for the long term - similar to what they currently have with Saints Row.


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