Aliens: Colonial Marines Troubled Developer Releases Staff

Aliens: Colonial Marines is still a hotly contested game.  With an impending lawsuit, Sega being forced to add a disclaimer to trailers due to consumer complaints, and low scores the game has been lambasted on almost all fronts.  And unfortunately that means heads rolled at TimeGate studios.

TimeGate, the studio behind not only Aliens: Colonial Marines but also Section 8, filed for bankruptcy last week because they owed millions of dollars to various creditors including publisher Southpeak Interactive.  The creditors also include Epic Games, Agora Games (an online game service) and DJ2 Entertainment (a transmedia developer).  Court documents also list minor debts like a local pizzeria, to whom TimeGate owes $34.80.

The most pressing claim remains Southpeak Interactive who published Section 8.  While they didn’t specify an amount, TimeGate Studios does face $7.35 million in damages and losing the Section 8 license due to a previous fraud suit between them and SouthPeak.

The suit came about in 2009 when TimeGate sued Southpeak claiming that they had withheld royalties and did not follow through with localizing Section 8. Southpeak counter-sued, claiming that TimeGate didn’t invest enough capital into the game’s development.  Ultimately SouthPeak won that battle and were awarded the $7.35 million as well as the Section 8 license.  Continuing the drama however, that decision was reversed last March and reversed again in April in SouthPeak’s favor.

In response to all their issues TimeGate has let go of their staff today in light of the impeding bankruptcy.  However, SouthPeak is contesting the Chapter 11 and trying to change it to a Chapter 7 liquidation.

While it’s clear that TimeGate was mismanaged and had a wholesale of issues that led them to this point.  It does seem like Aliens: Colonial Marines had a huge part in the current goings on.  The game was constantly delayed and while TimeGate might have been the last studio to lay hands on it, it did switch hands multiple times. At this point there is no way to know how Aliens: Colonial Marines affected TimeGate’s financial situation until the documents are released.  It’s also unknown what is going to happen to their employees.  As more information comes out, Leviathyn.com will report it.