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Interplay Entertainment

BY GAMERS MUTANTS FOR GAMERS MUTANTS— Interplay's motto during the development of all Interplay Fallout games

Interplay Entertainment (truncated as Interplay and founded as Interplay Productions) is a video game developer and publisher company that created the Fallout series. Before selling the franchise to Bethesda Softworks, they published Fallout, Fallout 2, Fallout Tactics, and Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel. Canceled projects included Fallout Extreme, Fallout 3 (Van Buren), Fallout Tactics 2 and Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel 2.


Throughout 2003, Interplay developed Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox and it was released in January 2004. They began development of Fallout 3 codenamed Van Buren, but Interplay Entertainment closed down Black Isle Studios before the game could be completed and the license to develop Fallout 3 was sold for a $1,175,000 minimum guaranteed advance against royalties to Bethesda Softworks.[1]

In November 2007, Interplay reopened in-house development and hired Fallout developer Jason D. Anderson as creative director for an unannounced MMO.[2] Given the aforementioned facts, it's most likely that the game Anderson is working on is Interplay's Fallout MMO, given that he is the contact name of Interplay's jobs appliance and that Fallout is referred in the job requirements.[3]

On June 30, 2008, it was announced that Interactive Game Group, LLC (created by Frederic Chesnais, former Chief Executive Officer of Atari, which now also owns MicroProse) purchased 2,000,000 shares of Interplay stock, as consideration for entering into a game production agreement.

On April 2, 2009, Interplay announced a binding letter of intent with Masthead Studios, a Bulgarian-based developer, to fund the development of Fallout Online. Masthead and Interplay teams would work together under the direction and control of Interplay to complete the development of the project.[4]

Interplay Discovery

In 2010, Interplay formed Interplay Discovery for the purpose of making pinball and other arcade games, to help fund Project V13. On December 31, 2010, Interplay stated that they currently had a loss of over $2.8 million in deficit and over the previous financial year lost over $1 million due mostly to what they described as historic operating losses and deficits in shareholder equity. Due to this, the company announced in late May of that year that they had significant doubts as to their ability to function as an ongoing business concern.[5]

Interplay Films

Interplay Films was formed in 1998, and the president of the division was Tom Reed. In 2000, Interplay was said to be partnering with Dark Horse Entertainment on the Fallout movie project. Brent V. Friedman (Dark Skies, Mortal Kombat II) wrote the script.[6] No Interplay property was ever made into a film and the division was disbanded.


On April 15, 2009, it was announced that Bethesda Softworks moved to rescind the Fallout MMORPG license.[7] On September 8, 2009, Bethesda filed two lawsuits, accusing Interplay of two counts of breach of contract, trademark infringement, and unfair competition. In the first lawsuit, Bethesda claims that Interplay is in breach of the Fallout MMO agreement for failure to commence full-scale development by April 4, 2009, and to secure certain funding for the game. which Interplay disputed.

The second lawsuit concerns Interplay's continued sale of Fallout, Fallout 2, Fallout Tactics, and Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel. According to Bethesda, the licensing contract requires all advertising, packaging, and other promotional material to be sent to them for approval first, which, according to the lawsuit, was never done by Interplay regarding neither the Fallout Trilogy pack, nor any of the releases through Good Old Games, Steam and other digital distribution platforms. Bethesda also claims that the name Trilogy constitutes unfair competition, since it suggests that the pack includes Bethesda's own Fallout 3.

The lawsuit ended January 9, 2012, with Bethesda paying Interplay $2 million USD in exchange for Interplay dropping all claims to the Fallout brand. Bethesda subsequently owned all rights to the Fallout name and IP, allowing sales of the first three games (Fallout, Fallout 2, and Fallout Tactics) through December 31, 2013.[8]




  1. U.S. Securities Interplay filing March 2004 (Archived): "Interplay sold to Bethesda Softworks LLC, "Bethesda" the rights to develop FALLOUT 3 on all platforms for $1.175 million minimum guaranteed advance against royalties. Bethesda also has an option to develop two sequels, FALLOUT 4, and FALLOUT 5 for $1.0 million minimum guaranteed advance against royalties per sequel. Interplay retained the rights to develop a massively multiplayer online game ("MMORPG") using the Fallout Trademark."
  2. https://web.archive.org/web/20200317234139/https://www.gamasutra.com/php-bin/news_index.php?story=16236
  3. https://web.archive.org/web/20071127104440/http://jobs.gamasutra.com/jobseekerx/ViewCompanyProfile.asp?CompanyProfileID=3198
  4. Earthrise studio arming Fallout MMORPG
  5. Interplay on the brink as debts mount
  6. No Mutants Allowed
  7. Interplay's 10-K for 2008
  8. Bethesda Softworks LLC v. Interplay Entertainment Corporation