Radical Entertainment Inc. is a Canadian video game developer based in Vancouver. The studio is best known for developing The Simpsons: Hit & Run, Prototype and Prototype 2, as well as entries in the Crash Bandicoot franchise. Radical Entertainment was founded in September 1991 by Rory Armes. Dave Davis, and Ian Wilkinson. It was acquired by Vivendi Games in 2005 and transferred to Activision in 2008. The studio faced significant layoffs in 2010 and 2012, with the latter causing it to cease development of original games and only support other Activision studios.
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Radical Entertainment co-founders Ian Wilkinson and Rory Armes previously worked for Distinctive Software during the late 1980s. When Distinctive Software was acquired by Electronic Arts in 1991, Wilkinson and Armes took the opportunity to form their own company. Radical Entertainment was established in September 1991 in the Yaletown district of Vancouver. The studio primarily developed Nintendo Entertainment System ports and adaptations of other video games, peaking at eight projects in 1994. Mike Ribero left his position as Sega of America's vice president of sales and marketing to become CEO of Radical Entertainment in 1996. Between 1997 and 1998, several employees left the studio to form Barking Dog Studios.
Acquisition by Vivendi Universal (2005–2008)
Although Radical Entertainment developed few titles for Vivendi Universal Entertainment, the titles gained massive success and warranted the company's interest in the developers. In 2005, Vivendi acquired Radical Entertainment; however, as described by a former developer at Radical, the mood did not change much and Radical still operated as an independent game developing company. After being acquired by Vivendi, Radical began to make many games such as Scarface: The World Is Yours and The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction while being published under Vivendi's Sierra Entertainment label. Radical was also given the license to continue development of the Crash Bandicoot franchise which was also published under Sierra Entertainment. Radical took over the development of Crash Tag Team Racing from Traveller's Tales. Due to the success of Crash Tag Team Racing, Radical started the development of Crash of the Titans and proclaimed that "Crash was home at Radical" stating that Radical would develop all further Crash games. The critical and commercial success of Crash of the Titans spawned one more sequel, Crash: Mind over Mutant, which managed to both critically beat its predecessor as well as commercially. During the development of Crash: Mind Over Mutant, Radical began working on its first original intellectual property, Prototype.
Prototype games and layoffs under Activision (2008–present)
When Vivendi Games merged with Activision to form Activision Blizzard in 2008, Vivendi's former studios, including Radical Entertainment, became part of Activision. At the time, Radical Entertainment was developing four games, including Crash: Mind Over Mutant and Prototype. Activision laid off circa 100 people, half of the studio's staff, and canceled the two unannounced projects. One of these was Treadstone, a game set in the Jason Bourne universe. Activision was not interested in the property and sold it back to Ludlum Entertainment, which subsequently licensed it to Electronic Arts.
In February 2010, Activision laid off around 200 developers from its studios, including roughly 90 at Radical Entertainment, equating to half of the studio's workforce at the time. A sequel to Prototype, Prototype 2, was released in April 2012. In the United States, it was the best-selling game of its release month. However, Activision considered the game a commercial failure; on 28 June 2012, the company announced a "significant reduction in staff" at Radical Entertainment that would see the studio cease development of its own games and only support other Activision studios going forward. While some reports, including that of former Radical Entertainment senior audio director Rob Bridgett, indicated that the studio had closed, Activision stated that the would remain open with the reduced staff. Activision and Radical Entertainment re-iterated this statement in September that year. The Microsoft Windows port of Prototype 2 was released in July 2012, and Radical Entertainment co-developed Destiny, released in 2014.
|1994||Brett Hull Hockey||Sega Genesis|
|1995||RHI Roller Hockey '95||Super Nintendo Entertainment System|
|2001||A.I. The Circuit or A.I. Gladiator||Xbox|
|2006||Scarface: The World Is Yours||Xbox 360|
|~2007||The Simpsons: Hit & Run 2||Unknown|
|2010||I Am Crash Bandicoot, Crash 2010 or Crash Landed||PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox 360|
|2011||Spider-Man 4||PlayStation 3, Xbox 360|
|2012||Prototype 3||PlayStation 3, Xbox 360|
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