Gaming Feud of the Moment: Take-Two vs. THQ
For the longest time, the big feud in the gaming industry was between Activision and EA. After all, the two are basically vying for supremacy as THE BIG COMPANY in the gaming world, and have even gone head-to-head with competing, big-name first-person-shooters Call of Duty and Battlefiled.
But that feud is so 2011. This is the future, baby. Yesterday, according to a post on Joystiq, Take-Two’s CEO Strauss Zelnick was speaking at the MIT Business conference, where he was highlighting the differences between his company’s strategies and those of THQ, which has been going through a series of high-profile financial troubles over the last few months.
“THQ’s strategy was licensed properties, first and foremost. License stuff from other people, whether it’s UFC or WWE or a motion picture property, and make a game around that. And our approach, since we took over the company, is 100 percent owned intellectual property […] The most important difference is quality. Take-Two has the highest quality ratings among third-party publishers, according to Metacritic and most people in the industry. Quality really, really, really matters. THQ has had some good games, but their quality levels aren’t even remotely … the quality hasn’t measured up. Strategy didn’t work and the execution was bad. To put it another way: the food was no good and the portions were small.”
And Zelnick capped off his comparison with quite a bold statement:
“THQ won’t be around in six months.”
In response, THQ got in touch with Joystiq and a representative offered the following statement:
“Obviously, Mr. Zelnick’s perception of THQ is outdated and inaccurate. His comments are irresponsible and false. Perhaps he would be better off commenting on his own business.”
Of course, maybe Zelnick was just saying out loud what we’ve all been thinking. I mean, some might say that the writing’s on the wall. And we haven’t heard much out of THQ lately to reveal the ways in which the company’s righting the ship, you know?
What do you think? Was Zelnick out of line? Or was he just speaking the truth?