Forums - Gaming Discussion - What would be the affect of the fall of a major third party publisher?

Been wondering this recently, even if it is a bit hyperbolic. 

E.A, Activision ,and Bethesda are probably not going to burn into ashes in a single year, but with their recent problems and the talk of doom and gloom, I'd figured I'd get thoughts. 

If a major publisher does collapse in a scale of a few years (goes out of business, stops providing nearly as much or as effective games, or otherwise makes them far less prominent), what does that do the industry? 

Normally I'd ask a thread something like 'if E.A collapses, what does that do to Nintendo', but I am aware that in general is probably a better question.

Konami and THQ are probably the closest examples we have, but I am not sure the exact time table of their falls...

The Democratic Nintendo that a paradox? I'm fond of one of the more conservative companies in the industry, but I vote Liberally and view myself that way 90% of the time?

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Someone else would take their place.

Mobile games will also play a bigger and bigger role.

Anyone who thinks Activision or Bethesda is falling anytime soon is out of their minds.

EA probably shouldn't be in question, either, except that they're very much at the mercy of licensed content, so a massively hypothetically fall is technically possible if everything goes wrong at once.

Either way, I don't think it would be a big deal to lose either Activision or EA. In terms of self-developed content, both could be replaced. FIFA, the NFL, another big budget military shooter--those games would get made by someone. That's way too enticing a vacuum for the market to ignore. In terms of publishing, I don't see much of a problem, either. Other publishers are already growing and more would step up if given the opportunity.

Bethesda would be the biggest loss, assuming their IP don't get snapped up. The IP they own aren't easily replaceable and would possibly even hurt the video-game market if they disappear.

From a personal standpoint, EA and Activision could disappear tomorrow and I'd lament very few of their franchises biting the dust while hoping the most talented teams reform elsewhere (BioWare comes to mind). Bethesda vanishing, though, would devastate me. I know nothing about it but the next Elder Scrolls game is automatically my "most anticipated" ... until the next mainline Fallout comes around.

The big three 3rd party publishers (EA, Activision and Ubisoft) are still in relatively good condition and have money in the bank to spare. Even if they get hit massively, they will still have enough margain to recuperate and reform.

Out of the three, I'd say Ubisoft is the one in the best position, since it's the one that has partaken in excessive practices the least (compared to the other two, at least). They are not going anywhere anytime soon.

EA have been making a fool of themselves lately, and with the Star Wars deal slowly but surely sinking, DICE and Battlefield series offering deminishing returns and the lootbox regulations everywhere in the world threatening to cut FIFA's profits severely, it looks like it's in very bad shape. They won't dissapear, though, since their sports deals bring monumental profits even without the lootboxes, and the license owners don't care about gambling in videogames (FIFA and the NFL are spotty at best and dangerously shady at worst), so they are going to keep licensing their brands to EA. The only things that could hurt EA is either a massive lawsuit about their lootboxes or a investers' panic throwing their shares into garbage value.

Activision is having similar problems, only with CoD instead of FIFA. They have more control over that brand than EA has over the sports ones, but with Bungie going their own way and Blizzard seemingly cutting corners everywhere they can, it doesn't seem like they are in good shape either. Maybe the insider trading investigation uncovers something really shady from them, and that could potentially hurt them badly.

Also, Bethesda is in no real danger. They could just stop developing their game, and just publish and license their properties to others, and that would probably improve their performance, so it would be a win/win for them.

If anyone of them fall (they won't, but it's interesting to speculate) the shedding of dozens, if not thousands of IPs, many of them unused for years, would be the talk of the year. So many possibilities for other companies to get hot properties for cheap...

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If a single major publisher falls the effect would be minimal since history has shown another rises. However I believe EA and Activision would be an exception since both publishers are the largest video game publishers in the industry (excluding big three of course) since they have many IPs in which they pump out year in and year out. As much as you or gamers in general may hate COD, Fifa, Battlefield, WOW etc, these games are absolutely essential for the video game industry to prosper since these IPs sells dozens of millions and brings in billions of dollars in revenue. Many dont realize but these games are the one's that keeps the industry afloat. So if either EA or Activision goes bankrupt the video game industry would heavily decline. Both? The industry would crash. Ubisoft and Take Two are also major publishers but their games aren't as widespread as EA or Activision. Sure Take Two has GTA and Red Dead but they dont come in annually or as often as COD and Fifa. NBA 2K sells but not on the level as Fifa. Ubisoft on the other hand has no IP that can compete with the likes of GTA, Fifa, and Cod. Their best IP is Assassins Creed which at best sells around 10 mil per installment if their lucky. Bethesda has been growing in recent years even though their games have taken a quality dip but they are still not in the same league as Ubisoft let alone EA and Activision. Same with Square Enix and Capcom who have been gaining prominence in the last couple of years. Also if any publisher were to go bankrupt (except EA/Activision/Big 3) it would just pave they way for another to rise or many others since IPs can be sold off like Deep Silver and the emergence of CD Projekt Red. So to conclude effects would be minimal as long as EA, Activision, and the Big 3 do not go bankrupt.

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Depends on the publisher.

If they`re one that has a lot of licensed IPs (eg. EA) then it would greatly affect the industry as those IPs started moving to different publishers. If it was one that didn`t really have any licensed IPs but did have some large IPs of their own (eg. Activision) then it would be different as you`d probably see more of a drift in consumers from their major IPs to those from other publishers in the same genre. You`d possibly see somebody buy the fallen publisher`s IPs but they`d probably just end up as a shadow of their former selves and not maintain their current popularity.

If it was a publisher that had neither of the above (eg. Konami) then nobody would give a fuck.

Bet Shiken that COD would outsell Battlefield in 2018.

Darwinianevolution said:

 a investers' panic throwing their shares into garbage value.

The only real issue that would present would be the threat of a takeover though, no?

If the company still has money in the bank and is still making profit then low stock prices doesn`t really matter too much, just as long as none of your competitors try and buy a load of them.

Bet Shiken that COD would outsell Battlefield in 2018.

Nothing would happen. The gaming market is over saturated as is and the loss of one big AAA publisher would just mean a few more sales for everyone else.

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KrspaceT said:

If a major publisher does collapse in a scale of a few years (goes out of business, stops providing nearly as much or as effective games, or otherwise makes them far less prominent), what does that do the industry? 


I am not really sure why it would do anything tbqh

There are three variants of things which may happen:
- Quality of games will increase because only strong companies will 'survive'. Maybe, we'll have fewer platforms to play on.
- Quality of games will decrease, but prices will increase as there will be fewer competitors on the game dev market.
- Indie game developers will start new companies and that will be some kind of post-modern period of gaming industry.