From Sega Retro

Accolade logo.png
Founded: 1986-06-10[1]
Defunct: 2002-02-08[2]
T-series code: T-119
Merged with: Infogrames, Inc. (2000)
Merged into: Infogrames (1999)
550 S. Winchester Blvd., San Jose, California, 95128, United States[3][4]

Accolade, Inc. (Later known as Infogrames North America, Inc.) was formed in 1984 by Alan Miller and Bob Whitehead. The name was chosen mostly on the basis that their former place of employment, Activision, was based on an alphabetically higher name than Atari (which both of them worked at before co-founding Activision), and they wanted their name to be above Activision.

The company originally produced games for the home microcomputer market, but as the popularity of those systems waned, Accolade focused on PC and console development, including the NES, Mega Drive, SNES and PlayStation during those systems' popularity. All of Accolade's initial titles were developed in-house, but being a publisher as well as a developer, Accolade began to publish titles produced by other developers as well. By the mid-1990s, most of Accolade software development was done by third-party developers.

In October 1991, Accolade was served with a lawsuit regarding copyright infringement that eventually led to the concept of reverse engineering for interoperability purposes. Sega wanted to keep a hold on their consoles, and wanted all its games exclusive to Sega. Unwilling to conform to single platform use, Accolade engineers researched through reverse engineering on a way to produce titles for the Sega platform. Sega sued Accolade over the practice and won an initial injunction, forcing Accolade to remove all Genesis product from store shelves. Accolade, however, won on appeal and reached an out of court settlement with Sega that allowed Accolade to continue building their own Genesis cartridges but as an official licensee — however, Accolade still continued to produce unlicensed games (primarily those co-published with Ballistic).

Accolade did well in its early years, but by the 1990s, Accolade's sales suffered and management was forced to enact several rounds of lay-offs. Accolade was the entry point for Infogrames' North America expansion. The company was later renamed to Infogrames North America, Inc. and published Infogrames' games for the US market from then on. In 2000 Infogrames North America merged with Infogrames, Inc. and therefore Infogrames North America were folded into the latter.

In 2013, Tommo, Inc. acquired almost all of Accolade's properties from Atari during the bankruptcy sale, and the Accolade brand name now lives on in the hands of Tommo and publisher Billionsoft.


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