Developer, publisher, and former distributor Stardock has provided extensive information on their sale of PC digital games outlet Impulse.
Stardock CEO Brad Wardell cites three reasons for the decision to sell their distribution arm to retail titan GameStop.
It was consuming the rest of the company…The Games unit wanted to able to release its titles on Steam and other platforms…[and] Running a large store was not compatible with Stardock’s internal culture.” Wardell outlines (and expounds on) in the company’s recently released annual consumer report (via Shacknews).
"Impulse’s success came at a cost. High talent software developers are precious and Stardock found itself having to transfer its best developers from both the software and games unit to Impulse in order to ensure that the platform could scale and compete in the market.
"While Impulse was able to benefit from Stardock’s top development talent, the effects on the rest of the company were patently obvious. Object Desktop, Stardock’s flagship software product, languished and the Elemental: War of Magic project suffered greatly as well."
The poor launch of the aforementioned Elemental in 2010 was a major black eye for the company, and it ended up having to lay off staff because of it.
Wardell adds that GameStop was better for Impulse in several ways, using its position in the industry to get the rights to titles Impulse ‘struggled to obtain.’ He also discusses how the move was also meant to strengthen the PC market in general.
"Getting one of the major retailers refocused on the PC market would provide long-term benefits both to us and our fellow PC game development studios.”