Melbourne House

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Established: 1980

Melbourne House was established in 1980 as the UK publishing arm of Australian developer Beam Software. Beam sold the arm to budget-range publisher Mastertronic in 1987, where the Melbourne House brand was retained as a label for full price games. Within the year, Mastertronic merged with Virgin Games to become Virgin Mastertronic, then later Virgin Interactive Entertainment. As a result of the changes, the Melbourne House fell into disuse.

Going full circle, founding company Beam Software discovered in 1997 that the rights to the Melbourne House brand had lapsed. Having reacquired the rights, Melbourne House returned to the stage as the publisher for Beam's titles. However, in 1999 Beam faced financial difficulties and sold the rights to Infogrames, where the brand mutated again into an internal studio names Infogrames Melbourne House. In 2003, following Infogrames acquisition of and rebranding to Atari, the studio became known as Atari Melbourne House Pty Ltd. where it home to the development of titles including Test Drive Unlimited.

By late 2005 Atari was facing its own financial woes and put many assets up for sale, including the Atari Melbourne House studio. In 2006 the studio was acquired by Krome Studios, where it underwent is final transformation as Krome Studios Melbourne. This was to be its final resting place as, in 2010, Krome closed down the studio as part of a restructure.

Software Highlights from Credited Titles

Melbourne House's first work that SPOnG is aware of is the 1982 title, "Hobbit, The" (Amstrad CPC).

The company has been involved titles released on the PC, PS2, PSP, GameCube, PlayStation, Dreamcast, Amiga, Oric, C64, Vic-20, Spectrum 48K, Sinclair Spectrum 128K, BBC/Electron and Amstrad CPC. Of these, "Test Drive: Unlimited" (PS2) and "Transformers" (PS2) have been best selling titles.

The company's most recent involvement was on the 2007 release "Test Drive: Unlimited" (PSP).

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