As the online world collectively worked itself into a frenzy this past week, fighting over who gets to give Gabe Newell more money, the fact that Valve managed to accidentally sell THQ in one of its sales was lost in the panic. The Steam Sales, notorious for their deep discounting, often sell a mix of individual games, packs or “series” of a game, as well as publisher catalogues, but this marks the first time that an actual publisher themselves was sold.
THQ, whose worth is currently estimated to be around $37.34m, but who have been suffering from financial troubles, seem to have accidentally listed themselves in Friday’s extravaganza. (Former) CEO of THQ Brian Farrell tried to claim in an interview that it was “all a bit of a mistake. We were just trying to list all 9,274 pieces of DLC for Saints Row the Third, but it seems that the intern in charge of listings instead put the entire company up for sale. Our $37m value was discounted at 99.9999%, taking the price of the entire company down to $37. Though mind you that’s more than we’d have got for it a couple of months ago.”
The deal, which was available in a limited quantity of one, was purchased by 19-year-old Samuel Wallace of Topeka, Kansas, who is a self-professed “slacker” and currently works part-time in Taco Bell. Wallace seemed somewhat shocked when he was called up shortly after making his purchase by a rather apologetic Farrell, asking if he wouldn’t mind giving the company back in exchange for a coupon for a free copy of WWE ’13 and a uDraw. Wallace soon recovered from his shock, however, declining the offer and instead revelling in his new-found importance as CEO of a semi-major game publisher.
“Really it’s something I’ve always wanted to do” he said, speaking exclusively to IGN, whose emails we intercept on a daily basis. “I mean, who wouldn’t want to run a company in charge of such great titles as…um…”.
THQ was delisted from the NASDAQ stock exchange and declared bankrupt shortly afterwards.