Relic Entertainment Inc

Moby ID: 278

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Vancouver, Canada-based Relic Entertainment develops electronic entertainment. It was founded in May 1997 by Alex Garden, Luke Moloney, Erin Daly, Aaron Kambeitz, Rob Cunningham, Gary Shaw, and Shane Alfreds.

Operations began in a modest 1600 sq. foot office upstairs from a popular nightclub. In April of 1998, Relic made the move to its new 12,000 sq. foot world class facility in Vancouver's historic Yaletown district.

The studio’s first title was the space strategy game Homeworld (1999). Publisher Sierra Entertainment continued the franchise in 2000 with Homeworld: Cataclysm, but by a different development studio.

Their next title Impossible Creatures arrived four years later in 2003, a real-time strategy game for Microsoft Game Studios where the units were animals that could have their genes modified to inherit different traits. It was received fairly well, but received less attention than their first title. Shortly after, a sequel to Homeworld was released as Homeworld 2, also in 2003. Reviews were generally positive, but it made less of an impact than the first game.

In April 2004 the studio was acquired by the publishing house THQ for close to $10 million in an all-cash transaction. The acquisition was completed in May. Later that year, the studio released the fantasy strategy title Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War based on the tabletop Warhammer 40,000 universe. Over the years, the studio released various expansions such as Winter Assault (2005), Dark Crusade (2006) and Soulstorm (2008). The last expansion was done by Iron Lore Entertainment Ltd. with less involvement from Relic.

Previously only creating games for computers, the studio’s first and only console title was The Outfit (2006), a shooter set during World War II that was received fairly well, but less than their other titles. Much more successful was the launch of the Company of Heroes franchise, started with Company of Heroes in 2006 and followed up with the Opposing Fronts and Company of Heroes: Tales of Valor expansions in 2007 and 2009 respectively. Again set during World War II, they featured squad-based strategy gameplay.

There were also rumours that Relic was looking to reacquire the Homeworld franchise from publisher Vivendi to create a third game in their sci-fi series. Through the discovery of a document at the trademark office, THQ eventually confirmed that Relic owned the trademark once again, making it possible to create a new title for THQ. However, the IP was eventually bought by Gearbox Software in 2013 and the next game in the Homeworld series, Deserts of Kharak was developed by Blackbird Interactive.

In February 2009, the Dawn of War sequel Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War II was released.

Following the closure of parent company THQ in January 2013, the studio was sold to SEGA. As part of the acquisition, SEGA also brought their IPs Company of Heroes and Dawn of War from THQ. Soon afterwards, Company of Heroes 2 was released.

After the unsuccessful Dawn of War III, Relic Entertainment was contracted by Microsoft Studios to develop Age of Empires IV and contribute to the codebases of the earlier Age of Empires titles' Definitive Editions. The former was released in October 2021.

In their returning title to the SEGA-owned part of their portfolio, Relic Entertainment announced Company of Heroes 3 in July 2021, with a short open pre-alpha playtest session soon after announcement. The full version of the game was released in February 2023.

On 28 March 2024, the company became independent from SEGA.

Credited on 39 Games from 1999 to 2023

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Company of Heroes 3 (2023 on Windows)
Company of Heroes 3 (Launch Edition) (2023 on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series, Windows)
Age of Empires IV (2021 on Windows, Windows Apps, Xbox One...)
Age of Empires III: Definitive Edition (2020 on Windows, Windows Apps)
Age of Empires II: Definitive Edition (2019 on Windows, Windows Apps, Xbox Series...)
Age of Empires: Definitive Edition (2018 on Windows, Windows Apps)
Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War III (2017 on Windows, Linux, Macintosh)
Narwhals in the Sky (2017 on Windows)
Kidditch (2016 on Windows)
Company of Heroes 2: Master Collection (2015 on Windows, Windows Apps, Macintosh...)
Impossible Creatures: Steam Edition (2015 on Windows)
Company of Heroes 2: The British Forces (2015 on Windows, Linux, Macintosh)
Homeworld: Remastered Collection (2015 on Windows, Macintosh)
Company of Heroes 2: Ardennes Assault (2014 on Linux, Windows, Macintosh)
Company of Heroes 2: The Western Front Armies - Oberkommando West (2014 on Windows, Linux, Macintosh)
Company of Heroes 2: The Western Front Armies - US Forces (2014 on Macintosh, Windows, Linux)
Company of Heroes 2 (2013 on Windows, Linux, Macintosh)
Darksiders II (2012 on Windows, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3)
Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine (2011 on Windows, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3...)
Warhammer 40,000: Kill Team (2011 on Windows, Xbox 360, PlayStation 3)

[ view all ]

History +

March 28, 2024

Company becomes independent.

May 23, 2023

Company lays off 121 employees.

January 25, 2013

Company acquired by SEGA following THQ's bankruptcy. The rights to the Company of Heroes series, Warhammer 40,000: Dawn of War series and Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine are also transferred from THQ to SEGA.

April 29, 2004

THQ acquires Relic Entertainment.

May 1997

Relic Entertainment is founded, in Vancouver, by Alex Garden & Luke Moloney.

Trivia +

The company was named as best PC Developer of 2006 by the gaming website GameSpy.

Related Web Sites +

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