Mark Overmars nearly sold Game Maker to Atari
March 10, 2011
Prior to taking a shareholding in YoYo Games Mark Overmars was about to sell Game Maker to Atari.
The first we knew of any offer for Game Maker, besides that Mark accepted from YoYo Games, was when I spoke with YoYo Games CEO Sandy Duncan last week and asked him how the company started.
Sandy revealed that by the time they had met Mark he had already agreed to sell the game creation software to “quite a big company” but had not yet signed the contract.
In a December interview with the Dutch Control games industry blog Mark Overmars revealed that the company lined up to purchase Game Maker was the well known Atari brand which at the time was licensed to Infogrames.
In the Control interview one of the questions asks Mark about the formation of YoYo Games. A rough translation of his response is below:
“Well that’s a nice story. I was approached by Atari America. They wanted a game creation tool which they could make available on their website. The negotiations went very quickly. They sent me a signed contract which was sitting on my desk waiting for me to sign. I was then approached by former Xbox Europe boss Sandy Duncan. With a number of industry heavyweights he had started YoYo Games and asked if I wanted to come onboard with Game Maker.”