Halcyon game for 'Terminator'

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"The Terminator" will be back on video game consoles.

The Halcyon Co., which owns the rights to the "Terminator" franchise, is forming its own gaming subsidiary and making a game adaptation of the company's upcoming film "Terminator Salvation: The Future Begins" its first release.

The game, which will be available on all formats, including next-generation consoles, PC and mobile, is expected to hit the marketplace at the same time as the film, which is slated for release in summer 2009.

Halcyon co-CEOs Victor Kubicek and Derek Anderson will become co-chairmen of the gaming division. Former Disney and Bellrock Media exec Peter Levin is heading up Halcyon Games as acting CEO. Cos Lazouras, most recently with Vin Diesel's game production house, Tigon Studios, is joining Levin as vp production.

Levin said the privately financed Halcyon opted to form its own game division rather that outsource the "Terminator" license to an outside publisher in order "to control our own destiny." He added, "When you own the intellectual property and have the creative control, you can make sure you're publishing a top-tier video game that will satisfy the needs of the marketplace."

Like a lot of blockbuster film franchises, "Terminator" has had its share of licensed games, most of which have done well in the marketplace. In May, Halcyon announced its acquisition of the franchise rights to "Terminator" from C2 (HR 5/10).

Development of the "Terminator" game has been under way for several months, and Halcyon has had someone embedded with the film production crew in Budapest from Day 1.

"We don't want the game to be the stepchild to the film," Anderson said. "They're of equal importance, and we want both to be of the same quality and be the same compelling experience."

"Terminator" will not be the only franchise in the Halcyon Games stable. Halcyon created a splash this year when it secured first-look rights to the works for famed science fiction writer Philip K. Dick (HR 10/9). The Halcyon executives said they are looking at bringing out titles based on the Dick books beginning in 2010. In addition, Halcyon Games also will eventually look at creating its own original IP.

The fact that the "Terminator" games will be released in mid-2009 will put them right at the sweet spot of the current game console life cycle, giving the titles a strong chance of reaching a massive global audience.

Anderson said Halcyon will look to partner with an established publisher for distribution, adding that given the quality of the "Terminator" franchise, "I don't think finding distribution is going to be much of an exercise.
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