In the wake of the unfortunate news regarding publisher Nicalis and Ittle Dew 2 developer Ludosity, news broke on September 26th of another similar situation between a different pair of studios. Longtime Sherlock Holmes developer, Frogwares, posted a letter to Twitter explaining that their publishing partner at Focus Home Interactive had enacted a new policy regarding all of its associated titles.
Despite not being a clause in any of Frogwares past or current contracts, the new stipulation gives Focus Home the right to remove any games not in their current “catalog” from digital storefronts without first transferring these titles back to the developer or IP holder. What that means for Frogwares is that a major revenue stream for the studio has suddenly been cut off and they now have to scramble to attempt to get their titles back on sale.
As Frogwares explains in the full statement that can be found at the end of this post, “we are losing all revenue attached to these games, some an unknown period of time and for other games, forever. This new policy from Focus Home towards former contracted developers will land a serious blow to our studio, threatening our future games and the people who develop them.”
Focus Home has not made any public statement on the situation but Frogwares was quick to lay out their strategy for returning access to their delisted titles, saying that “we are in the process of setting up new store profiles, and we are contacting console stores and hope to try and rectify the situation. However, we are unable to confirm if this can be done and already know that it will be impossible for certain games on previous gen, and very costly for others.”
I don’t know when I’ll be able to get the affected titles on the site so for now here is a list of what is and isn’t available based on Frogwares’ statement. Unfortunately, Crimes & Punishments is also up in the air and Frogwares warns that it may be removed on September 29th. You can read that full and lengthy statement further below.
Sherlock Holmes Crimes & Punishments (Available: Steam, Xbox 360)
The Testmanet of Sherlock Holmes (Available: Steam)
Magrunner: Dark Pulse (Available: Steam, PlayStation 3)
Sherlock Holmes versus Jack The Ripper (Available: Steam)
View all of Frogwares titles available on Steam here.