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Want to Buy the Homeworld Franchise?

By on February 27th, 2013 8:46 am

Homeworld | Sierra - Relic

According to Kotaku, the former publisher THQ is selling off their remaining franchises, which includes Homeworld, our beloved space RTS series.

Bids are due on April 15th, 2013. Apparently, THQ has already received over “100 expressions of interest” regarding “various titles”, but the amount of bids for Homeworld is unknown.

The properties will be sold in lots. Homeworld and Homeworld2 will be sold together as one of those lots, according to RPS.

So, are you up to this? Are you rich? :) Or perhaps you’re part of a company (or own a company) and you’re interested in going for it, and help bring back to life one of the most beloved space gaming franchises ever? If you do have the means, and feel up to this, you can send your intentions to auction@thq.com.

Requirements to bid are as follows, according to Kotaku.

Interested bidders must provide: 1) complete identification, including the names of corporate officers or those authorized to act on the bidder’s behalf; 2) written evidence of authority to enter into the anticipated transaction; and 3) proof of financial ability to perform the contemplated transaction. Only those bidders who meet all three requirements will be provided access to confidential information about each lot of titles once a non-disclosure agreement has been executed. Documentation meeting these three requirements should be sent to auction@thq.com.

So, what do you think?

Should Homeworld rest in peace and be remembered (at least for a little while longer) for its original brilliance? Or should someone that feels up to the task just buy it and make something worthwhile out of it, in the hope to create an outstanding remake or sequel?

There was an IndieGoGo initiative run not too long ago to bid for Homeworld. They managed to get $13,675. Hum… it probably wouldn’t be enough?

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26 Comments


  1. Unforgiven says:

    The IndieGoGo Initiative still has a PayPal donation option, so you can still donate to the cause. However, no clue how much money they made so far.

    I would love to see a Homeworld 3 for that matter ! Dunno if it will happen.
    Since I’m not rich, I guess i have to wait and see…

  2. James Coote says:

    I’d love to see it done, but only if it was done right.

  3. LeoCeballos says:

    If anyone does pick up the franchise, I’d love to work on it!

  4. James Coote says:

    Also it is a case of being able to afford it, and then also give it the resources it deserves to make something worthy of the name. Ideally relic (or the guys who worked on it at relic) would get it back and make a Homeworld 3, but that assumes they have the will/resources themselves

    • Adam Solo says:

      I think Stardock could do it. Sins is probably as close as we can get from Homeworld. Stardock should have the required knowledge and probably the cash to go for it. Homeworld is more story/campaign based while Sins is more sandbox, but maybe something could be worked out.

      I also see Firaxis with this. It’s less obvious but they proved to be quite good with cinematics and animations with XCOM:EU. I think they could make a hell of a story and still deliver on the strategy side.

      Do you see anybody else? Relic, under Sega, seems out of the equation right? I mean, I’m with the impression that Sega didn’t go after Homeworld, and that’s why it’s being sold on lots now…

      Or, as you suggest, a Relic or ex-Relic staff gets out of his current job position and decides to go indie, and launch a kickstarter campaign. The thing is that I think Kickstarter doesn’t allow causes, so, how could they get the money to buy the IP in the first place?…

      • James Coote says:

        Doesn’t have to be a studio / team with a history of space games, just a history of great games. Gearbox for example made Homeworld Cataclysm back in the day (granted on top of the existing Homeworld engine).

        Imagine for example if Creative Assembly of Total War fame made Homeworld? The depth of history and content they put into those games is fantastic, but it never gets in the way of the gameplay. The mechanics are well considered and designed and the graphics and performance perfectly balanced

        From a technical perspective, there is nothing challenging about homeworld (Even I, indie dev, managed to make a rough homeworld clone from scratch. With Unity3D and a good team, you could probably do the whole thing in a couple of months). But it was the artwork, story, presentation and attention to detail that burned homeworld into the memories of so many. That is what you’d want from a studio taking on HW

      • BBR says:

        Stardock has only published Sins of a Solar Empire. Ironclad is the development studio. Stardock does 4X games, like their greatest achievement Galactic Civilizations 2, and now Fallen Enchantress, so it’s probably not suited for RTS. Stardock also isn’t a game studio actually.

        I can only think of Gas Powered Games as an appropriate studio to develop another Homeworld, but I doubt Wargaming.net is intersted in Homeworld.

        The awesome thing is that Homeworld 2 has aged better than most other games. Its graphics, gameplay, UI, sound, and especially the voice acting (both narration and chatter) are of quality games of today should aspire to achieve.

        • Adam Solo says:

          Right, but even so, a good portion of Sins’ development must have been retained in-house.

          And, being Stardock game’s department mainly focused on strategy and speculative fiction gaming (sci-fi and fantasy) I think it makes all the sense for them to pick this up.

          I think it would be a clever market move also. They would benefit from an established IP, where most of its fans intersect with their previous work fans, and they would also have a chance to work on a revolutionary and flashy RTS, and try to grab as many new customers as possible.

          This way, they would continue their reputation as good 4X developers but also RTS developers. Unless, they think their Sins IP should be the one to continue developing and Homeworld would be overkill on top of that.

  5. Skinner says:

    It would be just good to see it sold to an interested 3rd party company that can actually DO something with the dormant franchise.

    HWI and HWII were groundbreaking in their day (well, not really HWII, but it’s the better of the 2 – let’s just say it refined the game), but have suffered due to the flotsam and jetsam of businesses falling to the wayside (Sierra).

    Let’s hope, first of all, that they:

    1. Make HW I and HW II more accessible (such as via steam)
    2. Yes, create that oft-dreamed HW III (or some derivative thereof)

    I would settle for option 1 right now….acquiring a copy of HW II is a very difficult enterprise, in an era where legal software downloads of old games is easy, affordable and so convenient.

    Get HWI and HWII downloadable first.

  6. Njordin says:

    Homeworld compared to Sins Adam? Really?
    i agree with you that Stardock could handle this but i dont see any similarities between Sins and HW2. I hope HW3 will not only use the name for a different type of game. ( even if its still a space rts )

    • Adam Solo says:

      From the top of my head I do think they have some things in common. I’m not comparing the overall experience, but at least they both have gorgeous and charismatic ships that you can control in an RTS fashion. Nexus is also a good candidate for comparison here. But, overall Homeworld is unique yes, because of how the story blended so well with the gameplay.

  7. Angel says:

    Sins is more like a space version of Supreme Commander. I also think Homeworld is far more gorgeous than Sins, and generally superior in every single way =P

    Nexus is definitely a much better comparison =P another game that really needs a sequel or something thereof. Pity the kickstarter campaign failed.

    I think some of the people who worked on the original HW created their own indie company some time ago and were making a game. I can’t remember the name, but I remember seeing some visuals for it and the artwork is very HW-like. Perhaps they’d be a good contender for acquiring the franchise. I agree though that first and foremost should be a re-release of the HW franchise through Steam or other digital outlet.

    As long as EA, Ubisoft or some other mega-evil gaming corporation doesn’t get their hands on it. I make an exception for Valve =P

    • Timmaigh! says:

      Personally i think that Nexus is as far from HW as Sins, just in opposite direction:-)
      That said, i would love to see a game – HW3 – which would combine Homeworld tactical battles with the strategic wannabe 4X layer of Sins. That would be my prefered course of further development of HW series, if there was going to be one.

  8. Pitchblack says:

    If anyone were to pick it up, I think it should be Blackbird Interactive – any new Homeworld game without Rob Cunningham working on it would be a travesty! Though, admittedly, they’re busy with Hardware – which still looks damn cool.

    Not to mention that BBI has more than a few of the old Relic staffers besides him that worked on Homeworld. I don’t think Relic (Or Sega, as the case would be) is likely to pick the franchise up – if they had wanted it, they would have offered on it when picking up Relic in the first place, I’d imagine.

    Kerberos has more than a few Homeworld devs on staff, too, though after SotS II… *shudder*.

    Be interesting to see where it goes. I want the license bought, honestly, if for no other reason than to release Homeworld 1&2 on GoG or Steam. (Wonder what happened to Cataclysm, myself. Did that license die with Sierra?)

    • G_Bison says:

      Iron Clad also has members on the team that created Homeworld as well. If you look on how Sins and Homeworld our very similar as far as scrolling in and out of battles, they are related. The only difference is that Homeworld is more campaign and concentrates on that particular mission while Sins can have multiple battles throughout one or multiple systems. Which bogs the game down due to 32 bit 2 gig limitation. Both are great games but if you played Homeworld first, then Sins you can tell the games came from the people who worked on both…

      • Adam Solo says:

        I agree. And, I also had that impression, that Ironclad (or Stardock) had Homeworld members on-board, and that was why you could spot some HW reminiscence on Sins.

        @Pitchblack
        I also remember of reading something about Kerberos/SotS having former HW members on-board too.

        So, looks like some of the former HW members are on Relic, Ironclad and Kerberos. Sega/Relic seem out of the equation now, so maybe we see other big studio buy this and go with Ironclad or Kerberos. I would like to see Stardock buy this and team up with Ironclad again. But, with the Sins IP on the way…

  9. David says:

    I would like to see Homeworld available on digital retail; Steam or whatever.

    • BBR says:

      Then how about… Valve? They seem to be getting into all kinds of new things, this could be an interesting opportunity for them. I can’t think of a bad Valve game, and Steam integration would be awesome for multiplayer, also Steam Workshop (assuming they actually make it work) for modding.

      Valve purchasing the Homeworld IP would be great news to everyone I think. As long as they don’t sell hats for it…

  10. Mathias says:

    Nobody needs the Homeworld IP to make a great space game. In fact, I think acquiring the IP and trying to fill Homeworld’s shoes is more problematic than creating a unique franchise. The expectations about what people want from Homeworld 3 are immense. In any case, I would agree that if anyone does it, it should be Rob Cunningham.

    • Timmaigh! says:

      But Rob Cunningham was kind of art guru, when it comes to HW, was he not? I mean, he is probably more responsible for the artistic direction of the game than actual gameplay….? Not that i disagree, he would be probably my favourite to get the IP too…just a funny thing, when you think about it, we probably appreciate Homeworld more as an piece of artistry than actual game then…:-)

      @Adam Solo> Regarding games in the HW mould, i consider only the direct clones of HW, trying to build on its success to be close to it – for example O.R.B. Both Sins and Nexus are different enough to be considered unique games on their own.

  11. Keith Turner says:

    I know we are mainly discussing the Homeworld series here, but Red Faction is another series up for sale from THQ’s remains, and it is a sci-fi series I would love to see picked up again. It’s certainly a bit more action oriented than a lot of the games I play, but I’d love to see a Red Faction: Guerrilla style open world game featuring the human opponents as well as the aliens from Red Faction: Armageddon. The thing I loved about Guerrilla was how nearly every building was fully destructible, and there were many ways to approach your goals and cause havoc in general. It just needed more aliens, which Armageddon introduced but sadly stuck in narrow corridors instead of an open world.

    Anyway, sorry to digress from the Homeworld discussion guys.

    • Angel says:

      As is Supreme Commander. I know with Planetary Annihilation on the way it might be a bit redundant, but still would be nice to see a 3rd entry in the series that is back to its true form and not a dumbed down version like SC 2 was.

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