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Top 10 Gaming Companies We Wish Were Still Around

VO: Matthew Wende
Script written by Sam Cossey Back in the day, they made some of the most classic of classics...we wish they still did. Welcome to http://WatchMojo.com and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Gaming Companies We Wish Were Still Around! To have your ideas turned into a WatchMojo or MojoPlays video, head over to http://WatchMojo.comsuggest and get to it!
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Top 10 Video Game Companies We Wish Were Still Around

They may be gone but they certainly won’t be forgotten. Welcome to WatchMojo.com and today we’ll be counting down the Top 10 Video Game companies we wish were still around.

For this list we’ve looked back at those few developers and publisher who sadly won’t be making any new titles any time soon. Bear in mind that we will only be including those companies that either closed their doors entirely or dropped down to point of nonexistence. So while companies like Rare may not be as hot as they were in the 90s there’s still has a chance for them to make a comeback.

#10: Core Design (1988-2010)


While their earlier works on the Amiga and various SEGA consoles never really got much recognition, it was in 1996 where things really started to heat up when they gave birth to the Tomb Raider franchise. For the next few years this franchise would help them to become a prominent gaming studio, however it also lead to its downfall. When Tomb Raider: Angel of Darkness failed both critically and commercially, Eidos Interactive switched out Core Design for Crystal Dynamics to head up all future Tomb Raider games. This lead to many of Core Design’s top staff choosing to leave, resulting in the quality the company had been know for to dip down significantly.

#9: Acclaim Entertainment (1987-2004)


For 30 years this company helped to publish multiple games across the world, as well as porting plenty of arcade games to console. As the years went on Acclaim would end up acquiring some of the developers they had worked with in the past. This to lead to further development on franchises like the Turok, NBA Jam and Extreme-G games while also creating new games like Vex. Sadly due to low sales numbers, the company was forced to gradually close down many of the studios they owned and would soon end up filing for bankruptcy in 2004.

#8: Free Radical Design (1999-2014)


A company formed out of ex Rare developers, Free Radical Design looked to continue the success from Goldeneye by creating the Timesplitters series. In keeping with their previous work, the series managed to capture the same level of fun thanks to its fast paced gameplay and exhilarating multiplayer. How could things go downhill? Well… having to cancel the 3rd instalment of the Star Wars Battlefront series didn't help, nor did the underwhelming performance of Haze for that matter. Eventually the company would be purchased by Crytek and become Crytek UK, which later down the line would end up having it’s own money problems to deal with.

#7: Clover Studio (2004-06)


The word unique seems to be the most fitting term to describe this once Capcom owned developer. Headed by Atsushi Inaba, and formed from members of Capcom's R&D department, Clover Studios started strong with the sequel to Viewtiful Joe, but the studio's biggest creation was with the visually stunning Ōkami that managed to go on to receive tons of critical praise and win multiple awards. Sadly though this was not enough to make the game a commercial success. Things didn't get better with their next game God Hand, and with Inaba's departure to go on to make Platinum games, the studio was eventually dissolved back into Capcon soon after.

#6: Factor 5 (1987-2011)


As another studio that only found its groove much later in its lifespan, Factor 5 spent much of their early years working on games like the Turrican series, but it was their excellent Star Wars related space combat games that really gave them their wings, so to speak. With thrilling games like the Rogue Squadron series under their belt everything looked to be smooth sailing from here on out, however things really took a turn for the worst, as their newest title Lair failed to capture the same thrills as with previous games. It also didn’t help that the publisher of their next game Brash Entertainment went under, leading Factor 5 to follow them soon after.

#5: Midway Games (1988-2010)


Another iconic company that sadly met its end. While they did dabble with both the console and PC markets, it was in the arcades where they reigned supreme. From here they would develop and publish multiple hits like Spy Hunter, Tron and less we not forget a little fighting franchise named Mortal Kombat. It was also thanks to them that western audiences were able to play early game changers like Pac-man and Space Invaders for the first time. Despite the heydays of the arcade gradually fading away Midway remained financially secure, however as time went on things started to go south leading to most of their properties being sold off to Warner Bros.

#4: Pandemic Studios (1998-2009)



With a name like this, you just know you're in for a game with complete and total mayhem. Established by two former Activision employees, Pandemic rose thanks to its variety of tactical and demolition like games, with noteworthy titles like Full Spectrum Warrior, Destroy All Humans!, the Mercenaries series, and the highly popular Battlefront games. Eventually the studio would be purchased by EA, however this would turn out to not be a long partnership as EA ended up letting go of up to 1,500 employees across all of their studios, resulting in Pandemic being shut down a short while later.

#3: Westwood Studios (1985-2003)


Like others on this list Westwood Studios started simply enough with games like Eye of the Beholder under their belt, but it was the real-time strategy game Dune II that set them on the path to greatness. While the game wasn’t the first to invent the genre there are many who believed the game did help define it with Westwood, going onto garner much critical and commercial praise with the Command and Conquer series. It would be this success that lead to their purchase by EA, however this change was not something many in the company were happy with as EA would often rush game development leading many to leave and thus the studio went defunct in 2003.

#2: THQ (1989-2013)


Originally starting out as a toy manufacturer, this company worked with both virtual and real life toys up until 1994 when it decided to focus its efforts on the ever growing games industry. As the years went on the company worked with a range of developers and even started acquiring multiple studios. These included notable developers like Volition known for the Red Faction and Saints Row series, Relic Entertainment for the War Hammer and Company of Heroes games and Vigil Games for Darksiders franchise. In the end the company filed for bankruptcy in late 2012 with multiple divisions and properties being sold off, while others were forced to shut down alongside THQ.

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

Hudson Soft (1973-12)

Radical Entertainment (1991-12)

#1: LucasArts (1982-2013)


A long long time ago there was a studio named LucasArts. Founded by the man himself George Lucas, the studio naturally found much recognition for the multiple Star Wars related titles that were developed and published under them, but that was only one side of it. We were also blessed with stand out games like Zombies Ate My Neighbors, Grim Fandango and less we forget the Monkey Island series. In the end, their fate came down to Disney's acquisition of it’s parent company LucasFilm, with them announcing a few month later that almost all of LucasArts staff would be let go and that the company would only remain so as to licence out properties.
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