10 Video Game Studios From The 90s That Are Now BankruptVedran RadicGame Rant – Feed


The video game industry is a tough market. Competition is fierce and comes from every corner of the world, aside from that, its very complex and requires high knowledge, experience, and huge investments, with some games requiring budgets higher than Hollywood blockbusters.

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Game studios come and go. Everything has its lifespan, including them. Some studios go in style, some of them fight to the end, while others accept their fate. Directly or indirectly, more or less all of them are caused by financial problems. There is a long list of studios that ended tragically and faced the worst scenario.

10 Guerrilla Cambridge


Guerrilla Cambridge is, as its name says, an English studio based in Cambridge and was founded by Sony Computer Entertainment. The company is best known for its MediEvil series but also produced some interesting games like Primal for PlayStation 2 and LittleBigPlanet for PlayStation Portable.

The company was first named SCE Cambridge Studio but later renamed so it could become a sister studio to a Guerrilla Games. Several employees were let go by the company in 2014 and later Guerrilla Cambridge was close down in a restructuring process on 12 January 2017.

9 Bizzare Creations


Like the previous studio, Bizzare Creations is also based in England, this time in Liverpool. Before changing its name, the company was called Raising Hell Software. The studio developed games in different genres with more or less successful titles being: Formula 1, Fur Fighters, Metropolis Street Racer, Treasure Planet, and Blur, with their last game being James Bond 007: Blood Stone.

In 2007 Activision acquired Bizzare Creations for 107.4 million dollars. Later in 2010 Activision stated that is exploring the options for the future of the studio, including its potential sale. It couldn’t find the buyer and closed the studio.

8 Neversoft


Neversoft was founded in 1994 by three employees of Malibu Interactive. Throughout its history the company had its ups and downs – it started well by developing games for Sega Saturn and PlayStation.

After that, the company experienced financial troubles, but fortunately signed contracts with Activision to produce a third-person shooter called Apocalypse and starring Bruce Willis, and later the Tony Hawks Pro Skater series which increased studios size to 150 people. In 2014 Neversoft merged with Infinity Ward and was made defunct 20 years after its forming.

7 Silicon Knights


Canadian game studio, Silicon Knights was founded in 1992 by Denis Dyack and was headquartered in Ontario. The studio developed several games during its run like Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain, Metal Gear Solid: Twin Snakes, Too Human, and their last game being X-Men: Destiny.

The company declared bankruptcy after it lost the court case against Epic Games for copyright infringement of Unreal Engine 3, and was ordered to pay 4.45 million dollars in damages, a sum that was later doubled when including attorneys fees and cost. Additionally, the studio was ordered to destroy all unsold retail games developed on Unreal Engine 3.

6 Ensemble Studios


The company was formed in 1994 by Tony Goodman. In 2001 it was acquired by Microsoft where it operated as an internal studio till its end. Ensemble Studio was specialized in creating real-time strategy games and its portfolio includes the Age of Empires series, Star Wars Battlegrounds, Age of Mythology, and Halo Wars.

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It also developed its own engine – Genie Game Engine. The company shut down in 2009 after the internal statement issued by Microsoft which was later leaked to the public. During its run, the company managed to sell 20 million games worth 500 million dollars.

5 Zipper Interactive


The company was based in Redmond in Washington and was formed in 1995 by Jim Bosler and Brian Soderberg. It was best known for its SOCOM series and its last game was Unit 13 for PlayStation Vita.

Zipper Interactive suffered the same fate as the first studio on the list Guerrilla Cambridge. Both studios were owned by Sony Computer Entertainment, and Zipper Interactive like Guerrilla Cambridge was shut down in the restructuring process, or more precisely resource re-alignment. At the time of its closing, the studio had two projects for the PlayStation 4 in its development.

4 Lionhead Studios


The company was founded in 1997 by Peter Molyneux and several other co-founders, and the company was named after the pet hamster one of the co-founders owned. Lionhead Studios is best known for the Black & White and Fable series.

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In 2006 after financial difficulties the studio was acquired by Microsoft. The studio closed as a result of the cancellation of its game Fable Legends, but before that, it suffered serious problems when some of its senior staff departed, including the company founder. The studio encountered difficulties during the project and Microsoft closed the studio in 2016.

3 Visceral Games


Visceral Games was founded in 1998 by Electronic Arts as its subsidiary. The studio’s first game was Future Cop: LAPD and later achieved critical, and moderate financial success with the Dead Space series which had three installments.

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It also developed many other games including the Tiger Woods golf series, several James Bond games, the Sims series, Army of Two: The Devils Cartel, two Godfather games, and Dantes Inferno. Electronic Arts closed the studio on October 17, 2017, after canceling its last project named Ragtag which was supposed to be another Star Wars game.

2 Pandemic Studios


A game developer previously based in Los Angels in California was founded in 1998 by two former Activision employees. Pandemic Studios developed a large variety of not very well known games like Dark Reign 2, Mercenaries: Playground of Destruction, Star Wars: Battlefront, and Destroy All Humans!.

The studio had an unhappy ending when it was acquired by Electronic Arts in 2007 and shut down two years later. Its last game was The Saboteur. Prior to that, Electronic Arts cut 1,500 jobs through various studios, including Pandemic, who lost 228 employees.



Founded in April 1990 by Jack Friedman, THQ was a household name with many games well known and successful games like Company of Heroes, Darksiders, Destroy All Humans!, Homefront, and Saints Row. The company initially started in the toy business; that’s why its called THQ, which is an acronym for Toy Headquarters.

THQ enjoyed financial success in the 2000s, but experienced a decline in sales in 2009.  The company suffered a loss of 136.1 million dollars in 2011 and 239.9 million dollars in 2012, and, as a result on December 19, 2012, THQ declared bankruptcy ending its two decades in the gaming industry.

NEXT: 10 Best PlayStation Games That Barely Made Any Money

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