38 Studios, formerly known as Green Monster Games, was a video game production company originally based out of Maynard, Massachusetts. The company was founded by former Major League Baseball pitcher Curt Schilling in 2006. From its inception, the company was built around creating a fantasy MMORPG. This game was later given the codename of Copernicus.
On April 12, 2011, the 160 employees then employed by 38 Studios moved into their new office in Providence, Rhode Island. The move was facilitated by the incentives offered by then-governor Frank Caprio, who sought to provide benefits to companies willing to re-locate. The move was a month ahead of schedule.
In late May 2009, Curt Schilling's 38 Studios acquired Big Huge Games. 38 Studios' CEO and President Brett Close had this to say about the acquisition, "The acquisition enables us to develop and deliver top-quality games in multiple genres that are based in a shared world, ultimately maximizing the value of our Copernicus MMOG and the intellectual property as a whole. "
Friend of Giant Bomb and former GameSpot editor Rich Gallup was hired by 38 Studios and worked on both Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning and Copernicus. Ben Coello was also hired by 38 Studios and also worked on Copernicus.
Following financial troubles in May 2012, the staff at both 38 Studios and Big Huge Games were laid off. The majority of employees at both studios were unaware of the impending collapse and many continued to show up to the office despite the skipping of payroll. The financial troubles were first revealed when Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee revealed that the studio was late in making a payment on the $75 million loan that the state had granted 38 Studios as an incentive to move the company to Providence. 38 Studios filed for bankruptcy and all assets were liquidated.Bankruptcy Aftermath
On June 3rd, 2012, it was announced that Epic Games would found a studio in Baltimore, where Big Huge Games was formerly located, and that this new studio would be staff by both former Big Huge Games and 38 Studios staff. Ex-BHG leadership contacted Epic and requested to start a new studio and work on existing Epic IP. Founded as Epic Baltimore, the new studio was later renamed Impossible Studios. However, the new studio closed in February of 2013.
After the closing of 38 Studios, a group of its former employees, including Rich Gallup, banded together founded the independent developer Summer Camp Studios. The new developer's first game was an iOS mobile application called Fart Cat!.
The downfall of 38 Studios was covered in depth by Boston Magazine. The largesse and fiscal mismanagement of Curt Schilling contributed heavily to the downfall of 38 Studios and Big Huge Games.Development History
The first and only title released by 38 Studios was Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning. A teaser trailer was released on July 22, 2010 and included a knight fighting skeletons, magical swords, and a giant monster. The game is set in an original fantasy world created with the help of Spawn creator Todd McFarlane and fantasy author R. A. Salvatore. The game was finally released on February 7th, 2012 and received critical praise. In a Twitter post shortly after the games launch, Curt Schilling announced the game had apparently broke expectations and sold 1. 5 million copies.
The MMO Copernicus was supposed to be set in the universe established by Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, but the financial troubles of 38 studios led to the games cancellation. The governor of Rhode Island, Lincoln Chafee, announced that the game should be out by 2013, but the collapse of 38 Studios has brought an end to the game's development. A teaser trailer was released in 2012 after the financial troubles of 38 Studios became public knowledge. The rights to Copernicus currently belong to the state of Rhode Island, which as of September 2012 intended to auction the rights off.
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