BioShock Vita status unknown, analysts feel Irrational closure “hurts prospects for the franchise”

Thursday, 20 February 2014 20:06 GMT By Stephany Nunneley

With the closure of Irrational Games, the fate of both BioShock Vita and the franchise as a whole is rather uncertain, according to analysts and “no updates” regarding the long-awaited Vita version of the first entry in the series.

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Speaking with CVG, a 2K representative told the site there was “no update” available regarding the status of BioShock Vita.

Last word on the game came from Irrational Games boss Ken Levine himself in August, when he said the project had yet to be greenlit.

Levine said at the time he was still negotiating a deal between Sony and Take-Two.

The comment was one repeated  by Levine on more than one occasion. The game had been expected at some point after the Sony E3 2011 conference.

Meanwhile, Wedbush Securities analyst Michael Pachter feels the franchise itself is in trouble now that the studio has closed, however, he doesn’t see a possible lack of BioShock games in the future hurting Take Two’s worth.

“It hurts the prospects for the franchise long term,” said Pachter to GI International. “The game wasn’t coming out again until 2018 or so, meaning that it isn’t really a big deal to the company’s valuation.”

IDC research manager Lewis Ward doesn’t feel the closure means the last of BioShock, as Take-Two owns the IP. The company will just “farm out the next installment in the 2015 time frame.”

“I think the news is very much mixed. BioShock has proven itself to be a great franchise, albeit primarily when Levine is at the helm,” added James Hardiman of Longbow Research. “Levine created the original BioShock and BioShock Infinite, two of the best reviewed games of all time, but was not involved in BioShock 2, which was generally considered to be a bit of a disappointment.

“So with Irrational no longer involved with BioShock, there is certainly the risk that quality will suffer on the next sequel, although realistically, we probably shouldn’t expect that for another 2-3 years. The good news is the new studio that Levine appears to be building at Take-Two sounds awfully interesting.”

Levine announced last week he was “winding down Irrational Games,” to start a smaller, “more entrepreneurial endeavor at Take-Two.”

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