Late last year, tragedy struck in the world of superhero video games when Disney abruptly shut down Gazillion, the developer of free to play action-RPG Marvel Heroes, despite a planned date already in place. Things got even worse when reports followed of Gazillion employees being let go without PTO payouts, immediate benefits shutoffs, and more followed. Now, the assets of Marvel Heroes developer Gazillion have been acquired by Trion World, the company behind online games such as Rift and Defiance.
For an undisclosed sum, Trion Worlds acquired the now-dead studio’s licenses, trademarks, patents, domains, and game library. According to Trion Worlds CEO Scot Hartsman, this acquisition is part of a plan to strengthen the company’s publishing arm, and to use these assets to help support that movement. As Trion Worlds moves to publish more content from outside developers, the “tech and infrastructure” required should allow for that support.
Hartsman said in an interview, “We want ourselves and other developers be able to make games and succeed and have sustainable life cycles. Crunch and burn and lay off is unhealthy. We have tried to do things about it and we want to be a good member of the gaming ecology. We keep trying to do things to help other developers.”