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Report: Mindscape Leaves Video Game Industry After Nearly 30 Years

Report: Mindscape Leaves Video Game Industry After Nearly 30 Years

August 10, 2011 | By Frank Cifaldi

French software publisher Mindscape has closed down its last internal development studio, Punchers Impact, and is preparing to exit the games business after nearly 30 years, according to reports.

The studio confirmed the news to Develop, saying that its Punchers Impact closure would result in 40 lost jobs.

According to a company spokesperson, Mindscape put a lot of stake into the studio's PC multiplayer online battle arena game Crasher, which according to the source was "not a success," and as a result, the company is "no longer going to work in the game software business."

Though Mindscape as a game software brand has existed for around 28 years, the current company bears little resemblance to the original, which was founded in 1983 by former Scholastic executive Roger Buoy and published 1980s computer games that included Deja Vu: A Nightmare Comes True!! and Chris Crawford's Balance of Power.

The company was acquired by The Software Toolworks in 1990 and switched its focus to accommodate the resurgence of the home console market, primarily with Atari arcade conversions, licensed properties including Captain Planet and the Planeteers, and the music teaching keyboard peripheral Miracle Piano Teaching System.

Mindscape was passed around to a handful of new owners in the latter half of the 90s, becoming a division of The Learning Company along the way. It became a separate entity in 2001 after a purchase by former TLC Edusoft executive Jean-Pierre Nordman, who has overseen operations since.

In the absence of game software, the company is currently focused on a "house robot" line of toys called Karotz.

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