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Midway Confirms Newcastle Studio Shutdown,  Necessary Force  IP Ownership

Midway Confirms Newcastle Studio Shutdown, Necessary Force IP Ownership

July 14, 2009 | By Chris Remo, Staff

July 14, 2009 | By Chris Remo, Staff
More: Console/PC

Talking to Speaking, Midway representatives have confirmed that the firm has closed Midway's Newcastle, UK development studio after being unsuccessful in finding a buyer, with its Necessary Force IP potentially for sale.

The studio was not part of Warner Bros' $33 million acquisition of Midway assets, which transferred the majority of the bankrupt publisher and developer's intellectual property to the major media company.

Geoff Mogilner, Midway's head of corporate communications, said to Gamasutra, "We can confirm that we closed the Newcastle studio unfortunately. We had a period of time that was required by UK law to notify the employees of the pending studio closure."

"During that time, we made every effort to find a buyer for the studio, and we were unfortunately unsuccessful at that," he explained. "Today was when we had to close the studio."

It is believed about 80 Midway Newcastle employees are affected.

When asked about the IP under development by the studio, which was formerly known as Pitbull Syndicate and acquired by Midway in October 2005, Mogilner noted that while the Vin Diesel vehicle The Wheelman is now owned by Warner Bros, another in-development project is possibly still up for grabs.

Midway Newcastle "had another IP they were working on, Necessary Force, and that is owned by Midway," said Mogilner. "It is for sale potentially, but we have not decided what we're going to do with that intellectual property."

Finally, when Gamasutra asked for an update on Midway's San Diego studio, which was also not part of the Warner Bros. acquisition, Mogilner confirmed that it was still looking for a buyer. The studio has been given 60 days to find new owners following the commencement of the Warner Bros. acquisition before it is shut down.

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