Sunday, March 21, 2010

Catholic Girls, I mean, Catalyst Games in trouble

There was a bit of a buzz in the past week about Catalyst Games Labs (publisher but apparently not the intellectual property owner of the current incarnations of Shadowrun, Eclipse Phase, Battletech and CthulhuTech).

The official word from their website is as follows:
"While we wish the review had only uncovered positive news, we also discovered our accounting procedures had not been updated as the company continued to grow. The result was that business funds had been co-mingled with the personal funds of one of the owners. We believe the missing funds were the result of bad habits that began alongside the creation of the company, which was initially a small hobby group. Upon further investigation, in which the owner has willingly participated, the owner in question now owes the company a significant balance and is working to help rectify the situation."

The unofficial word from the interweb is as follows:
"OK, as you may well have been able to surmise from release schedules, Catalyst Game Labs is in a bit of a financial pickle, and it is somewhat unlikely that they will retain the license to make Shadowrun products. This is not because Shadowrun hasn’t been selling enough to cover expenses, but merely because a significant quantity of money is missing outright. Reliable sources put this figure at roughly $850,000. Which sounds like a lot, and it is. It is roughly 40% of Catalyst’s entire sales for last year, missing over a three year period. There will of course be lawsuits, and there are already people drawing up legal documents accusing..."

So what does this mean for all you die-hard Shadowrun fans out there? Well, if you liked all the 4th edition material you've gotten so far, you may see a change in quality as various members of the writing / editing staff depart the company.

And if you want to panic buy -- just in case Catalyst Games Labs does disappear -- go right ahead. They need the money. Just make sure it goes to the right people, chummer.

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