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THQ's Marvel deal will fill gap left by Pixar - analyst

Will likely lead to more deals, says Pachter, but Marvel will continue with multiple partners

THQ's recently announced partnership to create kids titles based on the Marvel Super Hero Squad brand will help fill the gap left by the completion of the publisher's deal with Disney/Pixar.

That's according to Wedbush Morgan analyst Michael Pachter, who notes that the collaborations between THQ and Pixar are to end after three more movies and the games publisher needs to continue its success with a younger audience.

"[THQ] has historically been overly dependent on kids titles. However, it is slated to lose the Pixar license after three more movies, so it has to fill that gap," said Pachter speaking to GamesIndustry.biz. "Also, there will be no Pixar original property in 2010, so there is a gap there as well."

Pachter expects there could be further deals between Marvel and THQ, but he also said that the comics giant will likely continue to partner will multiple games companies in order to create competition and get the best deals.

Following the recent release of a game based on the Iron Man movie, Sega still holds the rights to publish games alongside the upcoming Incredible Hulk, Captain America and Thor films. And Activision has the rights to produce games based on Spider-Man until 2018.

"I think that Marvel is interested in monetizing as many of its 5000 characters as possible, and think that they will sign deals with a number of publishers if they can help to promote the Marvel brand. So, yes, I think that there will be additional titles for THQ," offered Pachter.

"I don't know if it makes sense to team with only one partner. The movie studios never have, and it isn't clear that Bee Movie benefited from being made by the same publisher as Shrek," he said.

"Studios benefit if they create competition, ultimately enabling themselves to get higher payouts and encouraging their partners to focus on quality and marketing support. DreamWorks just awarded a one-picture game deal to THQ – when its five year deal with Activison expires – so the Marvel move was consistent."

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Matt Martin

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Matt Martin joined GamesIndustry in 2006 and was made editor of the site in 2008. With over ten years experience in journalism, he has written for multiple trade, consumer, contract and business-to-business publications in the games, retail and technology sectors.