Unnamed sources say the development team is in "active talks" with other publishers.
By Kris Pigna, 04/04/2009
Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe
For the long-suffering Midway, a critical blow to what remains their biggest-selling franchise must be the last thing they need right now, but it seems that may be happening all the same. According to Kotaku, unnamed sources say the development team behind the Mortal Kombat franchise is in "active talks" with other publishers to split from Midway and form their own studio.
According to the report, the Mortal Kombat team -- which is made of about 50 developers -- is angered over the lack of bonus payments guaranteed to them for Mortal Kombat vs. DC Universe reaching previously-agreed-to sales targets. These unnamed sources also say there's general frustration over how Midway has handled their bankruptcy filing.
The MK team is not under contract at Midway, although there is one catch: if they do leave, they probably can't take the MK license with them, and would have to abandon work on the follow-up to MK vs. DC Universe -- a prospect that, evidently, one source said would be "tough."
A Midway PR rep commented to Kotaku, saying only that the MK team was in "good shape," and that the bonus payment scuffle wasn't Midway's doing. "Midway is not refusing to pay out those bonuses," the PR rep said. "It's the unsecured creditors committee that is refusing to allow us to pay them. They're the ones holding that up."
Midway filed for bankruptcy back in February, after facing a number of financial problems following Sumner Redstone's sale of his majority stake in the company back in December of 2008.