Visual Concepts

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Visual Concepts Entertainment
Subsidiary
IndustryVideo game industry
Founded1988; 30 years ago (1988)
Founders
  • Scott Patterson
  • Greg Thomas
  • Jeff Thomas
Headquarters,
U.S.
Number of locations
6 studios (2018)
Key people
Greg Thomas (president)
Number of employees
350+ (2018)
Parent
Websitevcentertainment.com

Visual Concepts Entertainment is an American video game developer based in Novato, California. Founded in May 1988, the company is best known for sport games in the 2K franchise. Visual Concepts was acquired by Sega in May 1999 and subsequently sold to Take-Two Interactive in January 2005. The acquisition of the company led Take-Two Interactive to open their 2K Games label, as well as its 2K Sports division, on the following day, which Visual Concepts became immediately part of.

As of December 2018, Visual Concepts has six studios across the globe, which employ more than 350 people.[1]

History[edit]

Visual Concepts was founded in 1988 by programmer Scott Patterson and brothers Greg and Jeff Thomas, and originally based in a small office above a bank in Novato, California.[2] On January 25, 1995, Electronic Arts announced that they had acquired a stake in the company.[3] In September 1997, Sega announced their intentions to acquire the company; the deal was closed on May 18, 1999, and Visual Concepts switched ownership for an undisclosed sum.[4] Following a June 2004 deal between Sega and Take-Two Interactive, wherein the two would co-publish and distribute titles in Visual Concepts' ESPN-based game series,[5] rumors started spreading in December 2004, which suggested that Take-Two Interactive was planning to acquire Visual Concepts from Sega.[6][7] On January 24, 2005, Take-Two Interactive announced to have completed a transaction of US$24 million to Sega for the acquisition of Visual Concepts, its subsidiary Kush Games, and the intellectual property to the 2K franchise.[8][9] The publisher's 2006 Form 10-K filing later showed that a total of US$32.2 million had been paid to Sega for the acquisition of Visual Concepts and affiliate properties by January 2006.[10] On January 25, 2005, the day following the acquisition, Take-Two Interactive announced their new publishing label, 2K Games, and its 2K Sports division, the latter of which would henceforth manage Visual Concepts and Kush Games.[11]

A March 2009 research study on Metacritic scores, conducted by GameQuarry, ranked Visual Concepts as the number one "most consistent" video game developer on the review aggregator website, with 50 out of their 72 games at the time having received an aggregated review score of 80/100 or higher.[12] In August 2010, Visual Concepts laid off 30 employees due to "the need for resource alignment and better efficiency".[13] In December 2018, at The Game Awards 2018, Greg Thomas was honored with the "Industry Icon" award for his 30-year services with Visual Concepts.[1]

Games developed[edit]

Year Title Platform(s)
1989 Gnarly Golf Apple IIGS
Great Western Shootout
1990 Designasaurus II MS-DOS
Pipe Mania Apple IIGS
Task Force
Trog Nintendo Entertainment System
1992 McDonaldland Game Boy
Spot: The Cool Adventure
Star Trek: 25th Anniversary
Desert Strike: Return to the Gulf Super Nintendo Entertainment System
1993 Bill Walsh College Football
ClayFighter
Harley's Humongous Adventure
Madden NFL '94
Taz-Mania
We're Back! A Dinosaur's Story
1994 Claymates
Dominus MS-DOS
Lester the Unlikely Super Nintendo Entertainment System
Madden NFL '95
MLBPA Baseball
NHL 95
Nickelodeon Guts
1995 Toughman Contest Sega Genesis
Weaponlord Sega Genesis, Super Nintendo Entertainment System
Viewpoint PlayStation
1996 NHL 97 PlayStation, Sega Saturn
1997 NBA Action 98 Microsoft Windows, Sega Saturn
NBA Fastbreak '98 PlayStation
1998 One
1999 NBA 2K Dreamcast
NFL 2K
NHL 2K
2000 NBA 2K1
NFL 2K1
NHL 2K1
2001 Floigan Bros.
NBA 2K2 Dreamcast, GameCube, PlayStation 2, Xbox
NCAA College Football 2K2: Road to the Rose Bowl Dreamcast
NFL 2K2 Dreamcast, PlayStation 2, Xbox
NHL 2K2
Ooga Booga Dreamcast
World Series Baseball 2K2 Dreamcast, Xbox
2002 NBA 2K3 GameCube, PlayStation 2, Xbox
NCAA College Basketball 2K3
NCAA College Football 2K3
NFL 2K3
NHL 2K3
Sega Soccer Slam
ToeJam & Earl III: Mission to Earth Xbox
2003 ESPN College Hoops PlayStation 2, Xbox
ESPN NBA Basketball
ESPN NHL Hockey
ESPN NFL Football
World Series Baseball 2K3
2004 ESPN College Hoops 2K5
ESPN NBA 2K5
ESPN NFL 2K5
ESPN NHL 2K5
ESPN MLB Baseball
2005 College Hoops 2K6 PlayStation 2, Xbox, Xbox 360
Major League Baseball 2K5 PlayStation 2, Xbox
NBA 2K6 PlayStation 2, Xbox, Xbox 360
NHL 2K6
2006 College Hoops 2K7 PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox, Xbox 360
Major League Baseball 2K6 GameCube, PlayStation 2, PlayStation Portable, Xbox, Xbox 360
NBA 2K7 PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox, Xbox 360
NHL 2K7
2007 All-Pro Football 2K8 PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
College Hoops 2K8 PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
Major League Baseball 2K7 Game Boy Advance, Nintendo DS, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable, Xbox, Xbox 360
NBA 2K8 PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
NHL 2K8
2008 Major League Baseball 2K8 PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable, Wii, Xbox 360
NBA 2K9 PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
NHL 2K9 PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox 360
2009 Major League Baseball 2K9 Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable, Wii, Xbox 360
NBA 2K10
NBA 2K10: Draft Combine PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
NHL 2K10 PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox 360
2010 Major League Baseball 2K10 Microsoft Windows, Nintendo DS, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable, Wii, Xbox 360
NBA 2K11 Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable, Wii, Xbox 360
NHL 2K11 iOS, Wii
2011 Major League Baseball 2K11 Microsoft Windows, Nintendo DS, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable, Wii, Xbox 360
NBA 2K12 iOS, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable, Wii, Xbox 360
2012 Major League Baseball 2K12 Microsoft Windows, Nintendo DS, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable, Wii, Xbox 360
MyNBA 2K Android, iOS
NBA 2K13 Android, iOS, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, PlayStation Portable, Wii, Wii U, Xbox 360
NBA 2K All Stars Web Browser
NBA 2K MyLIFE
NBA 2K Online
2013 Major League Baseball 2K13 PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
MyNBA 2K14 Android, iOS
NBA 2K14 Android, iOS, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One
Pro Baseball 2K Microsoft Windows
WWE 2K14 PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
2014 MyNBA 2K15 Android, iOS
NBA 2K15 Android, iOS, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One
NHL 2K Android, iOS
WWE SuperCard Android, iOS
WWE 2K Android, iOS
WWE 2K15 Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One
2015 MyNBA 2K16 Android, iOS
NBA 2K16 Android, iOS, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One
NHL SuperCard Android, iOS
WWE 2K16 Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One
2016 MyNBA 2K17 Android, iOS
NBA 2K17 Android, iOS, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One
NBA 2K17: The Prelude PlayStation 4, Xbox One
NBA 2KVR Experience Android, Microsoft Windows
WWE 2K17 Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One
2017 NBA 2K18 Microsoft Windows, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, Xbox One
WWE 2K18 Microsoft Windows, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One
2018 WWE 2K19 Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, Xbox One

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b The Game Awards (December 6, 2018). "Greg Thomas Wins Industry Icon | The Game Awards 2018". YouTube.
  2. ^ Hruby, Patrick (September 18, 2018). "Inside NBA 2K's Journey to the Top of Sports Gaming". Bleacher Report.
  3. ^ Business Wire (January 25, 1995). "Electronic Arts takes equity stake in leading software developer, Visual Concepts Entertainment". The Free Library.
  4. ^ Kennedy, Sam (May 15, 1999). "Sega to Acquire Visual Concepts". GameSpot.
  5. ^ Adams, David (June 8, 2004). "Take-Two Takes SEGA Sports". IGN.
  6. ^ Thorsen, Tor (December 23, 2004). "Take-Two taking over Visual Concepts?". GameSpot.
  7. ^ Orry, Tom (December 24, 2004). "Take-Two to purchase Visual Concepts?". VideoGamer.com.
  8. ^ Feldman, Curt (January 24, 2005). "Sega officially out of the sports game". GameSpot.
  9. ^ Adams, David (January 24, 2005). "Take Two Buys Visual Concepts". IGN.
  10. ^ Sinclair, Brendan (January 31, 2006). "Take-Two reveals acquisition prices, hints at future lawsuits". GameSpot.
  11. ^ Jenkins, David (January 25, 2005). "Take-Two Acquires Visual Concepts, Announces 2K Games Brand". Gamasutra.
  12. ^ Elliott, Phil (March 17, 2009). "Visual Concepts 'most consistent' developer". GamesIndustry.biz.
  13. ^ Bennett, Colette (August 16, 2010). "NBA 2K11 Developer Visual Concepts Lays Off 30 Employees". Gamasutra.

External links[edit]