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RPGWatch Forums » Comments » News Comments » Interplay - D&D Rights Sold to Atari

Default Interplay - D&D Rights Sold to Atari

August 9th, 2008, 11:42
Stanza writes that according to bigdownload.com, Interplay's latest SEC filing shows they sold (or really, relinquished in return for canceling a promisory note) their last remaining D&D properties to Atari. Since IPLY long ago lost the license to release any D&D games, this presumably means titles such as Icewind Dale and so on. From the original article:
Under the terms of the agreement, Atari has agreed to purchase all rights that Interplay had on licensing games based on the Dungeons and Dragons franchise (One of Interplay's most popular games in the 1990s was the D&D themed RPG Baldur's Gate, developed by BioWare). In return, a previous agreement by Interplay to pay a promissory note of $1, 050,000 to Atari was cancelled.
More information.
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August 9th, 2008, 11:42
So now potentially Atari could hire Obsidian or some other studio to develop sequels for BG, IWD and PST?

Couple of years ago there were rumors of BG3 being in development. If Interplay was directly involved in the development then no doubt the project wasn't going anywhere. But I wonder if it hit the wall because Interplay had the license to the title?
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August 9th, 2008, 12:08
So Interplay sold only their IPs (BG, Icewind Dale, etc) and not the DnD license, or am I mistaken? Because there are a lot of DnD games out there and I always thought that Interplay didn't hold anything relating to DnD for a while.
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August 9th, 2008, 12:27
Correct as I see it. They long ago lost the rights to make D&D games but presumably Atari now owns IWD and Torment. Not sure on BG - I thought they gave that up a long time ago in return for ownership of Dark Alliance.

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August 9th, 2008, 13:01
It would be awesome if Atari found a good dev to do Icewind Dale 3. I love the cold and secluded setting. My favorite place in Faerun. If I had to choose a place to spend my elder days, that'd be the one. Kuldahar particularly.
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August 9th, 2008, 14:59
Originally Posted by danutz_plusplus View Post
It would be awesome if Atari found a good dev to do Icewind Dale 3. I love the cold and secluded setting. My favorite place in Faerun. If I had to choose a place to spend my elder days, that'd be the one. Kuldahar particularly.
Aye… sitting nice and warm in front of the fireplace under the great tree while outside the blizzard screams down the valley… with a cup of steaming wine or ale in your hands, sharing the tales of past adventures…

Sign me under too

Icewind Dale is also one of my favourite fantasy settings…Kuldahar probably THE favourite…
I still remember when my party stumbled out of the snow to behold the great tree and the village under it for the first time…

Would love to see the franchise revived again! (revived not desecrated that is; let`s see first what happens with the new Fallout..)
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August 9th, 2008, 15:07
Originally Posted by fracek View Post
Aye… sitting nice and warm in front of the fireplace under the great tree while outside the blizzard screams down the valley… with a cup of steaming wine or ale in your hands, sharing the tales of past adventures…
Yeah, just plain beautiful.
And the track that plays during your visit to Kuldahar is magnificent. Jeremy Soule really outdid himself with IWD's soundtrack.
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August 9th, 2008, 18:36
Oh good lord i hope this mean good news, not something like besheda and fallout, please please!!!!!!!!!

Go Atari Go!!!
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Last edited by Turok; February 16th, 2011 at 03:36.
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August 9th, 2008, 18:52
Well Obsidian has hinted quite strongly in the past that they purchased the rights to IWD a long time ago as they left.

When it was reported that I'Play took the links to their support sites down it was realized they sold them to a third party.

I would really be interested in just what they gave Atari. I can only think that Plane Scape has been left out of any current deal, or possibly any marketing of the games they already published. Or it could be that's what's been holding up any new BG franchise - NWN2 would have been taken care of in the agreement with Bio and Atari in 2002 under this thinking.

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http://www.rpgwatch.com/forums/showthread.php?t=22520
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August 9th, 2008, 21:08
This will be interesting to follow. Sequels and 'spiritual successors' seem to be a market given, so I expect something will turn up from this.

Where there's smoke, there's mirrors.
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August 9th, 2008, 21:24
Originally Posted by Dhruin View Post
Correct as I see it. They long ago lost the rights to make D&D games but presumably Atari now owns IWD and Torment. Not sure on BG - I thought they gave that up a long time ago in return for ownership of Dark Alliance.
They gave up the rights to the title, but probably still owned the characters and stories of BG, IWD and PST games. Which now went to Atari.
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August 9th, 2008, 22:15
This was filed as an 8-K back in July. Probably should've tipped you off towards, the 10-Q contains nothing new.

Originally Posted by Dhruin View Post
Correct as I see it. They long ago lost the rights to make D&D games but presumably Atari now owns IWD and Torment. Not sure on BG - I thought they gave that up a long time ago in return for ownership of Dark Alliance.
Yeah, Interplay lost BG ages ago.

Also, this means Interplay probably lost Dark Alliance as well, but that is unclear.

But honestly, the filing is pretty unclear and I'm not sure who owned what anyway. Interplay probably owned the characters, plot and other related paraphernalia of IWD and Torment, and Atari owns that now. No idea how that relates to property of Baldur's Gate, because BioWare might be holding that rather than Interplay.
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August 9th, 2008, 23:12
My information was that Dark Alliance name rights (without "Baldur's Gate") remains Interplay property. But they are not allowed to use any D&D elements for a sequel. I think there was something about that topic in a former report. There are rumours that Snowblind and Interplay made an agreement about a sequel to DA2.

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Last edited by Avantenor; August 9th, 2008 at 23:22.
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August 10th, 2008, 00:41
Originally Posted by Avantenor View Post
My information was that Dark Alliance name rights (without "Baldur's Gate") remains Interplay property. But they are not allowed to use any D&D elements for a sequel.
That was the old deal, yes.

The 8-K states Atari got "intellectual property rights developed by the Company in connection with the Dungeons & Dragons games". It doesn't say all IPs developed in connection with D&D, so it is possible DA was spared, but the filing doesn't confirm it either way.

The Snowblind rumour has been around for a while too, but as far as I know they're not based on anything other than Snowblind's long job listing.

Unless you're getting this from somewhere other than this filing…
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August 10th, 2008, 10:46
I sure do hope Atari does not have rights for BG series. If they do, please do not develop anymore BG series!!! I don't want them to ruin perfectly fantastic game series. God, no!!!

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August 10th, 2008, 12:03
Well, currently Atari has the D&D license for computer games, so presumably they could - although it would likely just be a name attached to a new party-based D&D RPG. I doubt they'd try to continue Bhaal spawn story. I think they feel NWN2 occupies the same territory at the moment but who knows down the track?

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August 10th, 2008, 23:48
How can they ruin the Baldur's Gate series? Go back in time and sabotage the development process?

I never understood why a sequel to something could retroactively destroy its predecessor. Oh! And I love how George Lucas "destroyed our childhoods" with The Phantom Manace! Amazing feat, that.
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August 11th, 2008, 00:06
Originally Posted by purpleblob View Post
I sure do hope Atari does not have rights for BG series. If they do, please do not develop anymore BG series!!! I don't want them to ruin perfectly fantastic game series. God, no!!!
Perhaps you're one for nostalgia and would prefer no game to be released than one that doesn't live up to your expectations, but personally I think Atari at least try and do things with their licenses. Interplay have had these great licenses but nothing has been done with them for years. Bring back Fallout and Icewind Dale, and even Dark Alliance (assuming Diablo will re-kindle the arcady hack and slash genre). They're no good to anyone sat in a registration database.
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August 11th, 2008, 02:31
Lets face it. 99% of Atari products suck. And I actually don't care about other games such as IWD, NWN series. Just leave BG series alone. The story ends with ToB. Do not ruin the series in vain attempt to sap out more money.

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August 11th, 2008, 02:59
Originally Posted by kalniel View Post
Perhaps you're one for nostalgia and would prefer no game to be released than one that doesn't live up to your expectation.
I'm not sure what you'd have to be one for nostalgia to think that. Personally, I dislike any industry that relies on endless sequel-churning and prefer developers to make fresh, original new properties rather than just producing sequels, but if they want to do a sequel then yes, they'd better do it right.
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