THQ Nordic took to Twitter earlier today, announcing an unusual business deal with Koch Media.
THQ Nordic trades Painkiller & Red Faction for Koch Media's Sacred, Risen, Rush for Berlin, Second Sight & Singles: Flirt Up Your Life!
— THQ Nordic (@THQNordic) May 5, 2020
Koch Media has acquired the Painkiller and Red Faction properties, while THQ Nordic gains the Risen, Sacred, Second Sight, Rush For Berlin, and Singles: Flirt Up Your Life properties. At first blush, this seems like a bad trade or at least one where THQ Nordic seems to have gotten the short end of the stick. They've reached a more significant number of properties, but they seem to have traded away their blue-chip properties for a batch of second and third-string series.
However, since Koch Media and THQ Nordic are both subsidiaries of Embracer Group, it's not quite the earthshaking scenario one might expect. It's more akin to a shuffling of portfolios than a significant realignment of the franchise landscape. The fans' response to the trade on Twitter has arguably been mixed. While the possibility of a remaster or even remake of Second Sight seems to be considered highly desirable, there are concerns about what might come about from Koch Media regarding Red Faction, which hasn't fared well since the last entry in the series, Red Faction: Armageddon.
Probably the most significant controversy has been around Singles: Flirt Up Your Life. On the one hand, the original game didn't correctly do well, garnering an average score of 58 on Metacritic, with most critics finding it a far more tedious and less enjoyable version of The Sims. But, if THQ Nordic asked for it as part of the swap, it stands to reason somebody in the company believes they make something with it.
It will be interesting to see what comes about from this trade a year or so down the road.