Online games developer and publisher K2 has acquired the APB IP from the administrator of collapsed Dundee studio Realtime Worlds, inside sources have told Develop.
California based K2 Network, a heavily VC-funded company responsible for the free-to-play service GamersFirst, has reportedly spent in the region of £1.5 million for the IP.
A GamesIndustry.biz report claims that APB “may be up and running again before the end of the year”.
It was originally believed that Unreal Engine vendor Epic Games was ready to snaffle the APB rights.
Since the collapse of Realtime Worlds in August, the administrator of the fallen company has done most of its business with US firms.
Early in September, an anonymous American company completed the purchase of Realtime World’s Project Myworld IP.
It is believed that Ian Hetherington, the experienced UK games exec who co-founded Realtime Worlds, is behind the deal. Hetherington has made no contact with the press or public appearances since Realtime Worlds entered administration.
The Dundee studio responsible for the IPs, however, has struggled to be bought.
APB represents the last link to Realtime Worlds, but also is a totem of the company’s downfall.
Over $100 million was spent on APB, with VC funders eager to recieve a swift return. The game failed to make an impact on the market, with its capacious servers barely registering any notable activity.
K2, which specialises in free-to-play games, may bring a new business model to APB – a move which could, though not to the benefit of the Dundee dev cluster, bring closure to the sorry saga.