The game developer's Rockstar Games unit, which produces the popular Grand Theft Auto title, said it would acquire independent development studio Mad Doc Software LLC. The nine-year-old company offers game development contracting services and has previously worked with Rockstar, most recently on the XBox 360 version of "Bully: Scholarship Edition," a game where the player is a troublesome schoolboy who navigates his way through reform school. No deal terms were disclosed.
The transaction continues a trend of established game publishers buying up smaller development houses. But on the bigger consolidation front, stalemate appears to be the word of the day. Take-Two has been trying to fend off EA's advances, arguing that its offer undervalues the company. After being rebuffed by its would-be prey, EA, the world's biggest video game publisher, launched a tender offer, which it recently extended to April 18. EA conditioned the offer on the removal of Take-Two's recently-approved poison pill provision. -- Olaf de Senerpont Domis