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Cryo Interactive

From Sega Retro

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Cryo Interactive
Founded: 1989
Defunct: 2002
Headquarters: Paris, France

Cryo Interactive Entertainment was a French video game development and publishing company founded in 1992, but existing unofficially since 1989 as a developer group under the name Cryo. It was formed by members of ERE Informatique who left Infogrames (proprietor of ERE since 1986) — among these were Philippe Ulrich, Rémi Herbulot and Jean-Martial Lefranc.

The first game developed under the Cryo Interactive moniker was the hit Dune, which granted the newly formed software company both publicity and funding for further games under Virgin until 1996, when Cryo started self-publishing inside the European market, and in North America through then partially owned Canadian publisher DreamCatcher Interactive.

Cryo made its name mostly through adaptations of already existing stories (such as Riverworld, based on Philip José Farmer's novel and Ubik by Philip K. Dick) or those based on historical scenarios (like KGB, a game set days before the dissolution of the Soviet Union and several games based in Atlantis, Ancient Egypt, Qing Dynasty's China and Louis XIV's France, developed with Cryo's Omni3D engine). Although most of the post-Virgin games managed to capture and stay true to the original settings, poor interfaces and the lack of worldwide distribution turned little profit from each game.

In July 2002, not long after Frank Herbert's Dune flopped, Cryo's situation was no longer sustainable, and the company was declared bankrupt. After much negotiation, most of the assets and development teams of Cryo Interactive were absorbed by DreamCatcher Interactive, forming the base for DreamCatcher Europe.

On 20 October 2008 Microïds acquired the brands and intellectual property of Cryo Interactive.

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