Interzone Futebol enters closed beta

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In news which is bound to agitate many ex-Interzone Games Perth staff, it looks like the game which was developed mostly at the Perth studio is hitting a new milestone in development.

Independent researcher / developer, Nick Lowe, has posted on his blog about Interzone Futebol reaching a closed beta status. As you may have heard, in early February this year, the bigwigs at Interzone saw fit to lock staff out of the Australian Government Grant-funded Perth studio and run off with the content which staff had diligently worked on while still being owed an extraordinary amount in wages and superannuation.

The plan was to complete the BigWorld Tech-based MMO soccer game at a new Dublin based studio called Big Collision Games, and it looks like they're making some progress. Interzone Futebol has been rebranded as Online Soccer Champions, and as spotted by Nick, they're using the same trailer for their launch that Interzone Games Perth released back in August 2009.

Unfortunately, it seems Interzone Games have managed to escape unscathed after the whole Interzone Perth incident, still owing $1.5m in outstanding debt (some $500,000 to staff and $1 million to the Australian Tax Office).

For the report, head on over to Nick's blog...

Comments

Anonymous's picture

I think there may be a lot of interest in whether Bigworld has had an active role in the removal of the game assets from Australia, as has been alleged.
If this is indeed the case would their owners care to explain how they reconcile this with their repeated claims of being supporters of the local industry?

Anonymous's picture

If (and it is just and if) BW had a contract to do XYZ for Interzone (or whomever the contract may legally transfer to), they still have an obligation to do their job as long as IZ have fulfilled their part of the contract with BW. It doesn't matter if it now "reconciles" with their claims of local industry support, a contract is a contract (or should be). Just like the one between employer and employee should be followed too ;(

Unfortunately, irrespective of what BW may (or may not) think of Interzone and how badly they might (or might not) feel for the ex IZ employees, they don't really have a choice, lest they face legal action themselves for breach of contract.

Anonymous's picture

Typically middleware contracts do not allow for transfer without the agreement of the vendor. I have yet to see a contract which compels a vendor to assist in the removal of all intellectual property produced by a developer.
Seriously this whole sorry affair is shameful.
The impact on the employees, the Perth industry and the perception of games developers at a federal level, is profound.
The ex IZ guys have been great in their efforts. We should all support them 100%.

Anonymous's picture

While it's certainly not good that all of the Aussie guys lost their jobs over this earlier in the year, at least all of their hard work isn't going to waste, and the game may see the light of day, even if in all liklihood they won't be credited for it.