Friday, November 14, 2008

WizKids: RIP

If you're tuned into the gaming industry, you probably already know that WizKids closed its doors permanently on Monday. The word from inside is that employees showed up, the announcement was made at 10 am and they were told to be out of the building by 2.

I knew very few people still left at WizKids (and in fact, there were very few people left, thanks to Topps' repeated layoffs, cutbacks and - yes - horrid and ludicrous mismanagement.) The news hit me a bit like hearing an old friend had died. I joined the ranks of HeroClix fans who crashed HCRealms' servers by trying to get some news, and talking about what just happened.

Topps' announcement that they were trying to find a new home for HeroClix sounded pretty disingenuous, but as things have started to shape up over the last few days it actually looks like it might happen - there is an organized effort by former employees to try to buy the property and license, and oddly enough it might actually work. All the more power to the people trying to pull this off.

I had long ago prepared for WizKids being closed. The proverbial writing has been on the wall for some time, and the company as I knew it was already dead. And that's really too bad, because WizKids was as close as I've ever come to sharing an experience with a bunch of kindred spirits rather than just showing up to grind away at a job for clients I could sometimes care less about. It got me out of Oklahoma as well, so there's more than a few reasons to look back fondly on my time there.

Rest in peace, WizKids. Even at the end you were still much-loved.

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