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By Kim Clark and Kim Clark,Sun Staff Writer | June 10, 1995
Spectrum Holobyte Inc., which has been swamped with red ink since buying Hunt Valley-based MicroProse Inc. in 1993, cut its work force by more than 60 workers, or 15 percent, company officials said yesterday.The Alameda, Calif.-based computer game maker said it cut its staff to below 400 workers and slashed the number of games it plans to produce this year from 50 to 29 in an effort to reduce its costs and improve its chances of turning a profit this year.Richard Gelhaus, the company's senior vice president for finance, said every Spectrum office and division was affected by the layoffs.
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BUSINESS
By Gus G. Sentementes, The Baltimore Sun | May 25, 2012
About 100 employees of Big Huge Games, a Timonium-based maker of video games, lost their jobs this week as the studio and its Rhode Island-based parent company abruptly shut down because of financial problems. The 12-year-old company was one of the anchors of Baltimore County's well-established video game industry, which has grown steadily since the 1980s as the popularity of computer and console games has skyrocketed. Big Huge Games was owned by 38 Studios, a Providence, R.I.-based company founded by former Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling in 2006.
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BUSINESS
By Kim Clark and Kim Clark,Staff Writer | June 3, 1993
The employer of William Loomis, a stock analyst who follow MicroProse Inc., was incorrectly identified in yesterday's Business section.Mr. Loomis works for the Baltimore office of Ferris, Baker Watts Inc.The Sun regrets the errors.Like one of its simulated airplanes caught in a computerized air pocket, MicroProse Inc., a Hunt Valley-based computer game maker, was scrambling yesterday to pull itself out of a tailspin.The company's stock closed down 20 percent yesterday, to $6 a share, after plunging earlier in the day to $5, a 52-week low.The turbulence came in reaction to a surprise announcement Tuesday night that the company estimated it lost more than $5 million in the six months ended March 31, that it was in violation of covenants on its bank credit lines, and that one director had resigned.
BUSINESS
By Gus G. Sentementes, The Baltimore Sun | June 27, 2011
Working out of a Highlandtown studio, Ben Walsh and his small team of video game developers recently created My Pet Rock, a family-friendly Facebook game. But, Walsh said, some day he might decide to design a video game for a more, er, mature audience — and he's heartened to know the Supreme Court now has his back. In a landmark case, the high court on Monday struck down a California law barring the sale or rental of violent video games to minors. The 7-2 decision gave video games the same First Amendment protections afforded books, plays and movies.
BUSINESS
By Kim Clark and Kim Clark,Staff Writer | August 11, 1993
In another move to return MicroProse Inc. to profitability, the computer game maker yesterday laid off about 25 employees from its Hunt Valley headquarters.A terse announcement released yesterday evening said the reduction of its U.S.-based staff was part of MicroProse's "ongoing restructuring plans" and that the remaining 150 employees in Hunt Valley would continue operations there. MicroProse has more than 300 employees worldwide.The announcement did not specify the number of layoffs, but sources within the company said the number was about 25.Vice President Gerard R. Blair said last night he does not expect further layoffs at Hunt Valley.
BUSINESS
By Kim Clark and Kim Clark,Staff writer | July 16, 1993
After weeks of hints, MicroProse Inc. confirmed yesterday that high costs and poor sales of some of its fantasy computer games caused it to lose $4.9 million in the three months that ended March 31, and $5.3 million in its fiscal 1993.And the company said the financial pain did not stop there.The Hunt Valley-based game maker warned investors to expect a "significant net loss" for its first quarter of 1994, which ended June 30.The company said its cost of sales jumped 60 percent, or by nearly $4 million, in its last fiscal quarter, primarily because of a $1.1 million inventory write-down and a $1 million charge to write off development of poor-selling games.
FEATURES
By Newsday | November 24, 1994
Anticipating sluggish holiday sales for home video game machines, one of the world's largest game manufacturers this week borrowed a page from the sports world: Wait till next year!Nintendo of America announced a "virtual reality" game system, to be called Virtual Boy, that should hit the shelves in the spring.The U.S. market for game systems is saturated with machines by Nintendo and its rivals, Sega of America, Atari Corp., 3DO Corp. and the latest entry, Sony Corp. Analysts say the buying public of mostly teen-age boys is bored with the current generation of games powered by 16-bit microprocessors and is waiting for something new.Nintendo, the Redmond, Wash.
FEATURES
By Stephen Kiehl and Stephen Kiehl,SUN STAFF | August 9, 2005
Fourth down and seven. Patrick Blair's Indianapolis Colts are losing, 13-8, with just two minutes left in the game. Thirteen-year-old Patrick, at the controls of an Xbox at an Electronics Boutique store yesterday, tells his friend and competitor, Colby Giacubeno, "I'm going up the gut, I'm telling you right now." Colby, also 13, replies, "I'm sending everybody." Patrick passes the ball, Colby intercepts and runs it back for a touchdown. "See ya! See ya!" Colby taunts as one of his Atlanta Falcons sprints down the field.
FEATURES
By John Jurgensen and John Jurgensen,HARTFORD COURANT | December 2, 2003
The digital orgy of drugs, guns and 1986 neon that is "Grand Theft Auto: Vice City" hit the computer-game market more than a year ago, but apparently U.S. Sen. Joseph Lieberman is still fired up about it. "It's awful," he said, according to press reports of a South Carolina campaign last month. "If you saw it, you'd be disgusted and outraged." Maybe Lieberman had gotten wind that Vice City, one of the most popular games in history, had just become available to a bigger audience via a new version for Xbox machines.
BUSINESS
By Kim Clark and Kim Clark,Sun Staff Writer | July 13, 1995
Monarch Avalon Inc., the Baltimore-based maker of board and computer games such as Diplomacy, Kingmaker and Gettysburg, put itself up for sale yesterday, saying that increased competition in the game business and the costs of starting up a new girls' magazine were draining its cash.It was the second longtime Baltimore business institution to announce that it needed a purchase or rescue in the past two weeks.Parks Sausage Co. announced last week that it was seeking an investor or buyer to provide cash needed to pay off mounting debts and to fund new growth.
NEWS
By Elizabeth Large and Elizabeth Large,elizabeth.large@baltsun.com | August 3, 2009
Spurred by the success of Nintendo's "Wii Fit," video games are suddenly more and more about fitness. The "Wii Fit," a video game that acts as a virtual exercise coach, guides players through yoga moves, basic strength training and aerobics. Since it was released in the U.S. about a year ago, "Wii Fit" has sold more than 6 million copies. Nintendo's success has attracted the attention of not only its competitors (a slew of next-generation fitness-themed games such as "EA Sports Active" are on store shelves or will be by Christmas)
BUSINESS
By New York Times News Service | July 18, 2007
SANTA MONICA, Calif. -- In the competition among the makers of video game consoles, momentum is building for the Wii from Nintendo among its crucial allies: game developers and publishers. Inspired by the early success of the Wii, companies that create and distribute games are beginning to shift resources and personnel toward building more Wii games, in some cases at the expense of the competing systems: the PlayStation 3 from Sony Corp. and Xbox 360 from Microsoft Corp. The shift is closely watched because consumers tend to favor systems that have many compelling games.
FEATURES
By Stephen Kiehl and Stephen Kiehl,SUN STAFF | August 9, 2005
Fourth down and seven. Patrick Blair's Indianapolis Colts are losing, 13-8, with just two minutes left in the game. Thirteen-year-old Patrick, at the controls of an Xbox at an Electronics Boutique store yesterday, tells his friend and competitor, Colby Giacubeno, "I'm going up the gut, I'm telling you right now." Colby, also 13, replies, "I'm sending everybody." Patrick passes the ball, Colby intercepts and runs it back for a touchdown. "See ya! See ya!" Colby taunts as one of his Atlanta Falcons sprints down the field.
BUSINESS
By Mike Himowitz | August 4, 2005
SINCE THE DAWN of personal computers, Easter eggs have had a special place in the hearts and minds of software writers and their dedicated fans. But some old-timers are wondering, wistfully, if the days of Easter eggs are numbered - thanks to congressional investigations, the Federal Trade Commission and pressure from parents and religious groups who think a dollop of sex is more insidious than an entire game full of senseless violence. An Easter egg is a little surprise that programmers embed deep in their code, waiting for someone to type an arcane sequence of commands or push the right combination of joystick buttons.
BUSINESS
By JAY HANCOCK | May 9, 2004
WE'VE HAD some credibility issues here in the media factory lately, so I hesitated to write this column. I mean, who would believe it? A corporation that values its workers? A CEO who thinks happy, well-compensated employees are good for the bottom line? Great salaries? Good health insurance? Profit-sharing? Employees who love their jobs? And their company? Come on, Jay, you'll say. Sensational lies didn't work for USA Today's Jack Kelley, and they won't work for you. Stop titillating the readers with tall tales.
FEATURES
By John Jurgensen and John Jurgensen,HARTFORD COURANT | December 2, 2003
The digital orgy of drugs, guns and 1986 neon that is "Grand Theft Auto: Vice City" hit the computer-game market more than a year ago, but apparently U.S. Sen. Joseph Lieberman is still fired up about it. "It's awful," he said, according to press reports of a South Carolina campaign last month. "If you saw it, you'd be disgusted and outraged." Maybe Lieberman had gotten wind that Vice City, one of the most popular games in history, had just become available to a bigger audience via a new version for Xbox machines.
NEWS
By Tom Keyser and Tom Keyser,Sun Staff Writer | August 7, 1994
Paul Barker is a turncoat.The 37-year-old geography teacher from England is in Maryland on his vacation commanding the American forces in the Revolutionary War against the British. Mr. Barker, a thin chap with a trim mustache, relished his traitorous role during a match yesterday in the "AvalonCon World Boardgaming Championships" at the Marriott Hunt Valley Inn.The championships, which started Wednesday and end today, are a promotion for the Avalon Hill Game Co. of Baltimore, maker of strategic board games.
BUSINESS
By Gus G. Sentementes, The Baltimore Sun | May 25, 2012
About 100 employees of Big Huge Games, a Timonium-based maker of video games, lost their jobs this week as the studio and its Rhode Island-based parent company abruptly shut down because of financial problems. The 12-year-old company was one of the anchors of Baltimore County's well-established video game industry, which has grown steadily since the 1980s as the popularity of computer and console games has skyrocketed. Big Huge Games was owned by 38 Studios, a Providence, R.I.-based company founded by former Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling in 2006.
BUSINESS
By Robert Little and Robert Little,SUN STAFF | January 9, 2002
Games Workshop has always done business, quite literally, in a world of its own. Two worlds, to be more precise: one populated by elves, ogres and rat-men, the other by futuristic Space Marines and the Dark Eldar army. Games Workshop created those two worlds for War- hammer and Warhammer 40,000, table-top battle games that have built the company into a $135 million-a-year global enterprise. It makes thousands of metal soldiers who live and fight in them. It publishes a magazine, even novels about them.
BUSINESS
By Kim Clark and Kim Clark,Sun Staff Writer | July 13, 1995
Monarch Avalon Inc., the Baltimore-based maker of board and computer games such as Diplomacy, Kingmaker and Gettysburg, put itself up for sale yesterday, saying that increased competition in the game business and the costs of starting up a new girls' magazine were draining its cash.It was the second longtime Baltimore business institution to announce that it needed a purchase or rescue in the past two weeks.Parks Sausage Co. announced last week that it was seeking an investor or buyer to provide cash needed to pay off mounting debts and to fund new growth.
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