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APB sale clears outstanding wage claims at Realtime Worlds

Wages and holiday pay covered by IP sale; GamersFirst to launch free-to-play game first half of 2011

The sale of the intellectual property rights to APB: All Points Bulletin has allowed the Realtime Worlds' administrator to clear all unpaid wage claims and outstanding holiday at the defunct developer.

GamesIndustry.biz reported last week that the game has been acquired by GamersFirst's parent company K2 Network, and will now work on a free-to-play model, due for release in the first half of 2011.

"We are obviously very happy to have concluded the sale but at the same time very much regret the loss of jobs as a result of the closure of Realtime Worlds," commented Paul Dounis of administrator Begbies Traynor.

"As a consequence of the IPR asset sale all outstanding wages and holiday pay claims will be met in full.

"GamersFirst is a pioneer in the free-to-play space, thus APB will be re-launched as a free-to-play model game rather than the previous retail model. People who previously bought the game can now look forward to playing it again once it's back online."

The game will be tweaked by GamersFirst's own subsidiary Reloaded Productions, with the help of Epic's Unreal Engine 3.

"APB was a game that had several exceptional features and some brilliant ideas, even though it was plagued by some initial balance and monetisation issues," says Bjorn Book-Larsson, CTO and COO of GamersFirst, and responsible for GamersFirst's studio and game development efforts.

"We want to take all the unique features of this title, such as its unparalleled character, weapon and car customisation systems, and convert the game to a true free-to-play game. We are deep into the planning and early execution stages for this next chapter of APB and we will share more details in the near future. In order to put gamers first we will also actively engage the community in many aspects of all the planned changes."

The relaunched title will be known as APB: Reloaded.

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Latest comments (16)

Kevin Clark-Patterson Lecturer in Games Development, Lancaster and Morecambe College10 years ago
Wow! Excellent news for (ex) employees and fans of the series!

Free to play - the way it should be! :D
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Glad to hear APB is getting a new lease of life, It was a shame to see such a promising game disappear.
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Alan Pierce Programmer, Digital Delight10 years ago
Just in time for Christmas. How nice.
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Show all comments (16)
Kevin Clark-Patterson Lecturer in Games Development, Lancaster and Morecambe College10 years ago
@ Alan - "will now work on a free-to-play model, due for release in the first half of 2011"
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David Vink Freelance 10 years ago
@ Kevin - Perhaps Alan was referring to the unpaid wages and holiday.

Either way it's a bit of a silver lining, which is nice.
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Alan Pierce Programmer, Digital Delight10 years ago
Indeed I was, David.
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@ Kevin totally agree
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Marco Duarte10 years ago
I will be playing it and will feel nostalgic.
Glad to know that my former colleagues will be paid in full.
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Kevin Clark-Patterson Lecturer in Games Development, Lancaster and Morecambe College10 years ago
@ Alan - in that case sir I salute you! Hardly a Christmas bonus but nice all the same!

Big up K2
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Kingman Cheng Illustrator and Animator 10 years ago
Great news! :]

Just in time for the holiday season.
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Daniel Vardy Studying HND IT, De Montfort University10 years ago
APB was an awesome game, but ive read some interviews elsewhere which say they are going to make people pay for 'premium' items. in a shooter game that usually relates to weapons, in other words pay to win. K2 will have to get it right or face a small community made up of people who are able to afford to pay for said items.

it is good news however to see that ex-employees will get a final pay from the game
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Steven Pick Lead Graphic Designer, Atomhawk Design10 years ago
Lovely news!
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Bonnie Patterson Narrative Designer, Writer 10 years ago
Excellent news; I hope this comes in time for the former APB staff not to have incurred any debts from the lack of pay.

As for the announcement that K2's Reloaded Productions will be "tweaking" the game, I hope that extends to integrating a working anti-cheat system as well as monetising APB for F2P. Some of K2's existing games, such as Knight Online, have a very wide-spread (deserved or not) reputation for being riddled with hackers, who will form exactly the same barrier to the acquisition of new, long-term players in a F2P model as they did in RTW's version.

No-one wants to pay for the privilege of being consistently curb-stomped by Artificial Aiming's bot.
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Stefan Pettersson Specialist Consultant, Fat Tuna10 years ago
Godspeed!
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Michael Carr Lua Code & Test Engineer, SCEE Team Soho10 years ago
Good that the devs of MyWorld & APB will finally get the pay they are owed. It's been a long time coming.
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Steve Morrison Lead Artist, Firebrand Games10 years ago
I'm afraid it looks like nothing will be paid out. The administrators have put a max limit on the preferential payments. This unfortunatly means that is fairly likely that nobody will see a penny more than they recieved from the government.

So unless someone can correct me the exemployees gain nothing from this sale and are still owed fairly large sums of money from this debacle.

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