Funcom, developer of modern-day MMO The Secret World, is just not having a good year.
While the game itself is quite interesting, it hasn't held the attention of players or subscribers, and poor sales led to massive layoffs, including the lead designer. Promised content updates have been repeatedly missing promised launch dates.
Making it all worse, the former CEO, who stepped down from the role the day before The Secret World's official launch, is now under investigation for insider trading.
As The Escapist reports, when Trond Aas changed position on July 2 from CEO to "strategic advisor" and chief strategy officer, he became eligible to sell his Funcom shares. He immediately tried to offload 1.5 million of them, though he only succeeded in selling 650,000.
On July 2, when Aas changed roles, Funcom stock was still worth $US17.60 a share; yesterday, it reached a high of $US2.17. The falloff has been dramatic. Norwegian authorities are now investigating the claims against Aas.
Perhaps insiders at Funcom knew that their MMORPG was likely to underperform, or perhaps it's a horribly unfortunate coincidence of timing. Either way, the allegations don't do The Secret World or Funcom any favours.
Former Funcom CEO Faces Insider Trading Allegations [The Escapist]