Video game developer and publisher THQ has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, and plans on following through with a $60 Million deal to sell its assets to Clearlake Capital Group L.P.

Clearlake is set to acquire all four of the company’s development studios, as well as all current projects under the THQ brand. The company has stated that it is doing so in order to help THQ continue software development, and “shed certain legacy obligations and emerge with the strong financial backing of a new owner with substantial experience in software and technology.” Chief Executive Brian Farrell of THQ stated:

The sale and filing are necessary next steps to complete THQ’s transformation and position the company for the future, as we remain confident in our existing pipeline of games, the strength of our studios and THQ’s deep bench of talent.

The sale hopefully be completed over the next 30 days.

THQ was founded in 1989, and has since become one of the largest and most well-known publishers in the industry. While the company initially achieved little success, the acquisition of the WWE (formerly WWF) license helped THQ rise to become the leading developer and publisher of wrestling games. The publisher also began releasing several Nickelodeon licensed games centered around Spongebob Squarepants and Avatar: The Last Air Bender, which sold moderately well, but the company faced many commercial failures as well.

This announcement comes as a bit of a shock, however, as THQ has had significant success both commercially and critically over the past 10 years. Games such as Darksiders II, Company of Heroes, Saints Row: The Third and several incredible Warhammer 40,000 games have sold exceptionally well.

Luckily, the company has no plans to cease work on its current projects, nor will staff be laid off. THQ is set to release several big games next year, including South Park: The Stick of Truth, Company of Heroes 2, and the survival-horror FPS Metro: Last Light. Hopefully the sales from these games will be enough to keep THQ around for years to come.

It’s been a rough couple of years for game studios. What’s your opinion, readers?