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WizKids officially shut down

November 10th, 2008: Mike Sugarbaker says...
WizKids officially shut down

So yeah – Topps is formally exiting the hobby games market and terminating all WK product lines, or what’s left of them anyway. The predictable noises are being made about changing economic times and etc., but one wonders whether the sports trading card business is really that much better to focus on. I suppose the phrase “no risk, no reward” might be sounding a little sweeter these days to Topps’ owners (who are, for those of you not keeping your scorecards up to date, Dearborn Partners and Michael Eisner’s Tornante Company). [Edit: so there's me with the reading-comprehension fail: it sounds like HeroClix and something else (my guess is actually Star Wars PocketModel rather than Pirates) will be continuing under a new brand after a short break, rather than permanently folding. Critical Hits has some more details and discussion.]

WizKids announcement from 11/10/08 follows:

The Topps Company announced today that WizKids will immediately cease operations and discontinue its product lines.

Scott Silverstein, CEO of Topps, said “This was an extremely difficult decision. While the company will still actively pursue gaming initiatives, we feel it is necessary to align our efforts more closely with Topps current sports and entertainment offerings which are being developed within our New York office.”

Upon notifying our partners, Topps will immediately pursue strategic alternatives so that viable brands and properties, including HeroClix, can continue without noticeable disruption. To that end, WizKids will continue supporting Buy it By the Brick redemptions for Arkham Asylum, and the December Organized Play events for HeroClix.

For consumer announcements, please refer to www.wizkidsgames.com over the coming days for further information.

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