Frogwares, the developers of the Adventures of Sherlock Holmes series and The Sinking City, has declared the recent removal of several games from online stores was not their doing- but Focus Home Interactive instead.
The claim comes via a statement from the developer, containing two images of text and one depicting Sherlock Holmes being evicted from 221B Baker Street.
You can find the full statement below:
In summery, the statement claims that several games were removed on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 digital stores; including Thee Testament Of Sherlock Holmes, Magrunner: Dark Pulse, and Sherlock Holmes versus Jack The Ripper. Sherlock Holmes Crimes & Punishments will also be removed from Steam, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One digital stores on September 29th.
Frogwares claims Focus Home Interactive (the licensee or publisher) refuses to transfer the title IDs, despite the Publishing and Distribution Agreement ending.
Focus Home Interactive allegedly told Frogwares in a statement “only [sent] last week” that “Focus has put in place a policy in accordance with which they will not transfer any title – the content ID or title ID – belonging to any developer which has removed all their games from the Focus catalog.”
Frogwares claims this policy was not in any prior or existing contracts between them and Focus Home Interactive, and that it had never been applied to them in the past.
Currently Frogwares states they are working on setting up new store profiles, and are contacting the console digital stores to rectify the situation. However, they are unsure if this will be possible, and know it may be impossible for “certain games on previous gen, and very costly for others as we will have to update the SDK and that takes months.”
Frogwares’ statement closes with the following:
“We have always been an independent studio. We worked with many licensees on the grounds of mutual interests and benefits, and it’s the first time in 20 years we have encountered such a situation. We are losing all revenue attached to these games, some an unknown period of times and for other games, forever. This new policy from Focus Home towards former contracted developers will land a serious blow to our studio, threatening our future games and the people who develop them,
Right now, we are in a tough situation. We are preparing ourselves for a significant loss. To those parties that can help us and have influence over the situation – feel free to contact us.”
We have reached out to Focus Home Interactive for a statement.