French video games company Infogrames, majority shareholder of Atari, s buying Las Gatos, CA-based online multiplayer games developer Cryptic Studios for $27.6 million in cash and shareswith earn-out clauses taking the figure to $55.1 million by 2011 depending on the performance of Cryptic's games. Infogrames is issuing company bonds to get its hands on the company which it hopes will boost Atari's online games growth in America and abroad with its games including Champions Online, due for release next year, and a Star Trek game slated for 2010. Cryptic says it generated more than $100 million from its City of Heroes and City of Villains multiplayer games, before selling them to NCSoft. The company has about 150 full-time staff and for the 12 months June 30 it made revenues of $17 million. Release (pdf).
By Patrick Smith