UPDATE: Epic Mickey Studio Shuts Down

UPDATE: Epic Mickey Studio Shuts Down

image

A Disney rep has confirmed that Warren Spector's Junction Point Studios is no more.

The word slipped out a couple of weeks ago that Epic Mickey 2, despite being released on virtually every major non-handheld gaming platform on the planet, bombed badly, just barely breaking a quarter-million unit sales over the holiday season. That kind of underperformance is never good for a studio's future and Disney's very high-profile acquisition of Lucasfilm last year, which included established game developer LucasArts, made the Junction Point situation even murkier.

And now things are looking really bad, as Star Citizen developer Roberts Space Industries has tweeted a farewell message to the studio. "Second 21 gun salute for a studio in 7 days," it says. "Fare-the-well Junction Point! We hope that you all find new studios soon!"

There's been no official word from either Disney or Junction Point Studios, but under the circumstances it would not be a terribly surprising development. We'll update as more information becomes available.

UPDATE: Disney has now confirmed that Junction Point has indeed been shuttered. "It was with much sadness that we informed our teams today of changes to our Games organization, which include the closure of Junction Point Studios. These changes are part of our ongoing effort to address the fast-evolving gaming platforms and marketplace and to align resources against our key priorities," a Disney spokesperson said. "We're extremely grateful to Warren Spector and the Junction Point team for their creative contributions to Disney with Disney Epic Mickey and Disney Epic Mickey 2."

Source: Twitter

Permalink

The Handheld game was amazing.

I am sure it was due to a lack of advertisement that it didn't sell well. I didn't see a single commercial for either game, nor any ad for it online.

Somebody let the cat out of the bag ahead of schedule. But what did you expect when the Japanese can use Disney characters better than Disney can themselves?

Such a shame. I love the idea of Epic Mickey, and it's clear that a lot of love went into it, but sadly the games just weren't that good. Epic Mickey had awful controls, but got everything else right. Epic Mickey 2's controls were better, but the game had no heart at all.

the thing is:

the ones who this is aimed for dont know a lot about mickey or learned to know him as the edgy superhero/detective crap the mickey comics went in the late 90's and they are already oversaturated with "edgy" douchy superhero television shows.

and the ones that grew up with mickey and know how much fun he was, either dispersed away from mickeys douchy, edgy new persona or just dont give a damn anymore.

plus absolutely no one knew that it was available for almost every gaming platform.

i bet my [most valuable thing you can think of] not even the notorious evil internet pirates knew or bothered to crack it since the first game also tanked slightly..

also:

Not surprising.

To be quite fair Epic Mickey was a good idea. Not a good game mind you the repetitive peeing on things is no exactly stellar gameplay, but it was a good idea.

To bad it was an idea tied to one mediocre game and one game nobody played, ever. Kinda gives me the Bullfrog Deja Vu where EA basically gave them the finger advertisement wise.

Hate to see people lose their jobs, but the writing was on the wall after hearing how badly it did. Hopefully they all find new studios to employ them quickly.

Bah, too bad... I wonder what will happen to Warren Spector... he's the best... I hope he ends up somewhere good, making awesome games...<.<

Warren Spector is one of the best, and it is so sad to see this. Although, nothing is confirmed yet, so hopefully at least most of the employees will get to keep their jobs.

Andy Chalk:
"It was with much sadness that we informed our teams today of changes to our Games organization, which include the closure of Junction Point Studios. These changes are part of our ongoing effort to address the fast-evolving gaming platforms and marketplace and to align resources against our key priorities," a Disney spokesperson said.

Why is that nobody ever, ever announces this sort of thing honestly? Would the PR have been that bad if they'd simply said "The games didn't make a lot of money, and we've just acquired a bigger game developer with a lot of beloved IP. We're shutting this studio down to focus on the new one"?

Susan Arendt:
....but the game had no heart at all.

image

That does not compute.

more input is needed!

I think this is for the best. Epic Mickey didn't turn out anywhere near as good as its premise made it out to be, Disney was already being overly generous in granting it a sequel which also turned out badly, and if people other than Warren Spector are to blame for it, then he deserves better than being stuck working with those people for the rest of his career.

Just a pity it probably means he won't be moving to LucasArts either.

This is what happens when publishers own studios they keep closing them down and re building them, the paper work has to be dreadful why bother just keep it open(one big one) and revolve staff till something makes money.

Disney as a Publisher (they are right?) doesn't seem to be very good with marketing, and keeping studios open.

Another one? At his rate we're going to run out of studios by mid-year. At least, studios that dare to put something different out there. Poor Mr. Spector, he just can't catch a break.

Capitano Segnaposto:
The Handheld game was amazing.

I am sure it was due to a lack of advertisement that it didn't sell well. I didn't see a single commercial for either game, nor any ad for it online.

Almost every YouTube ad I skipped over the holiday season was for Epic Mickey 2. The game definitely had the ad exposure. I guess no one wanted Epic Mickey 2. Period. I mean, people were pissed enough with the first one not reflecting the steampunk concept art that was released.

So can we have Warren Spector get back to making games that challenge the status quo of gaming again?

I knew this game had come out about three weeks ago cuz my gf was downloading the demo, and after that I completely forgot about it until yesterday, and I got extemely bored with the game that I just stopped playing. What makes this worse is that if not for the previous new on this site I wouldn even have a clue about the game being launched back in November.

 

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
or
Username:  
Password:  
  
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
or
Register for a free account here