Video Game Trivia

I used to think I knew a lot about video games until I was unable to identify this company:

“Early Wednesday morning, August 10, 1994, Tom Katz, the new CEO and President of GAMETRONICS (a manufacturer of video game software), settled into his chair at his office in San Jose, California, and began to scan the morning newspaper. The phone rang. It was Martin Fueller, a controlling shareholder and CHairman of the Board of GAMETRONICS. Fueller told Katz that he had just received a call from a close friend in New York with some troubling news. Rumours were circulating in the arbitrage department of one of the large securities firms that Sony Copr. was planning a hostile takeover of GAMETRONICS. Fueller said that he did not believe a takeoever could be achieved without his consent since he held 42.5% of GAMETRONICS’ shares. He also told Katz that while he had not yet been contacted by Sony, if the rumours proved correct, he probably would receive a call within the next week or two.”

If you think you are good identify this video game business… all names have been changed (excpet Sony’s, of course)

HINT: This was when Sega and Nintendo were supreme and Sony’s Playstation 1 had just entered the scene.

I believe that this was Electronic Arts. Or maybe not. The trivia sets it up to be a company that would seem pretty unbelievable so EA is what came to mind.

sorry, I don’t mean to set it up as anything…

that excerpt is from a business class of a case I am currently doing for my MBA… I thought I knew a lot about video games but I totally lost it when I read this case… so I was hoping someone from here would know…

Did Psygnosis ever have an office based in California? I know the main one wasn’t there, I’m guessing its them. This would be about the time Sony would need to contact them for Wipeout and Destruction Derby, two of the most crucial games in creating that PlayStation image and docking the PSX in the minds of game players. And all throughout their relationship, there were all sorts of rumors about how much of Psygnosis Sony owned, and I always though they did either buy a good chunk of their stock or owned a certain percentage of them for a while, until the whole falling out later?

In any case, what happened to Psygnosis, I hear absolutely nothing about them these days, which is shocking when you look at what a track record they used to have…

My second guess is Sega, because Sony and Sega were set to battle against each other with the Saturn and PSX, and as everyone knows it was an extremely close battle (at least in Japan) until Square announced its defection and FFVII. This would be around the time of three or four months before the Japanese debuts of both systems, but way before Sega’s hilariously bad decision of a surprise launch for the Saturn three months before it was due in the US. The reason I think it was Sega is because for a very brief they held more of the market than Nintendo after 1993 and before they get trounced again by Donkey Kong Country and I believe Tom Kalinski had just been hired at Sega of America and that their base was in San Jose. With a name a made-up like Tom Katz, it seems awfully close.

So those are my guesses.

-Kitsune

They need more info, DrDel.

First company that came to my mind was Sierra On-Line. pokes Adam in ribs

Here’s the link to the entire case study

edit:
If you really want to know whether this is a real company or a fictitious composite, ask the author, Allen Morrison.

http://www.ivey.uwo.ca/Faculty/Allen_Morrison.html

because the whole idea of the assignment is that we aren’t supposed to know who the company is… hence, I wasn hoping someone on this forum would know… asking the author would mean getting a E on the paper! lol

Don’t have the slightest clue. I have serious doubts that this is a real case.

Now Psygnosis, that’s a different story. They were aquired by Sony in 1993. Since then, their European branch was bought by Eidos, with their US branch being dragged into Sony’s 989.

Roger Wong,

btw, how did you know where to find the case?

have you done this case before or something?

Google? Enter “CEO and President of GAMETRONICS” and only one result comes up, the aforementioned PDF.

[quote=“DrDel”]Roger Wong,
btw, how did you know where to find the case?

goog^H^H^H^H

Er, (cough) I mean:

I am the Omnipotent and All Knowing. Kneel before me and tremble.

Hi. Meet the former Senior Designer of the San Francisco office of Psygnosis inc. [Andrew waves]

And all throughout their relationship, there were all sorts of rumors about how much of Psygnosis Sony owned, and I always though they did either buy a good chunk of their stock or owned a certain percentage of them for a while, until the whole falling out later?

Sony owned all of it. They had a 5 year deal with the company’s owner, Ian Hetherington, that left the company in place and him in charge. Almost the moment that deal ended so did Psygnosis.

In any case, what happened to Psygnosis, I hear absolutely nothing about them these days, which is shocking when you look at what a track record they used to have…

They were totally absorbed by Sony. The US office, after an enormous start up cost, was totally shut down. It’s likely that Sony made more on the sub-lease during the “dot com boom” for the South Park offices than they spent.

The European offices were either shut down or absorbed by SCEE.

Your (totally historical) Power Pill

I have no actual data to back up my speculation, but didn’t Sony try to acquire EA Sports, and when that was shot down they waited till the CEO was on holidays and lured away all the employees to set up 989? At least, I think it was EA Sports they did that to.

for those of you that care I got my MBA assignment back… it turns out that the takeover rumor by SONY was false, and the company ended up filing for bankruptcy.

My Prof was unable to tell us the real name of the company b/c he forgot… DAMN HIM!!! I really wanted to know.

But, I got an A+ – the only one out of 40 students!! woot!!!

edit: now back to more FFXI!

Damn your pointless grade! We want to know the company!

Random stab in the dark at who it might be:

Accolade?

Uh, why are you taking an MBA class if you’re a doctor?

because 6 digits a year isn’t enough money for me.