Avalanche Software

Avalanche Software, LLC, also known as WB Games | Avalanche, is an American video game developer based in Salt Lake City, Utah, founded in October 1995 by four video game programmers formerly of Sculptured Software: John Blackburn, Todd Blackburn, James Michael Henn and Gary Penacho. The studio was acquired by Buena Vista Games (later renamed Disney Interactive Studios) in May 2005, and spent the next ten years developing Disney-related titles, including the toys-to-life game Disney Infinity (2013). In May 2016, due to a declining toys-to-life games market overshadowed by the popularity of mobile gaming, Disney decided to step out of the video game industry, closing Disney Interactive Studios and all of its subsidiaries, including Avalanche Software. In January 2017, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment announced that they had acquired Avalanche Software and re-opened the company, which saw John Blackburn return as chief executive officer.

Avalanche Software, LLC
IndustryVideo games
FoundedOctober 3, 1995; 24 years ago (1995-10-03)
  • John Blackburn
  • Todd Blackburn
  • James Michael Henn
  • Gary Penacho
Key people
John Blackburn (CEO)


Avalanche Software was incorporated on October 3, 1995, by John Blackburn, Todd Blackburn, James Michael Henn and Gary Penacho, four programmers that previously worked at Sculptured Software.[citation needed]

On April 19, 2005, Buena Vista Games (later renamed Disney Interactive Studios), the video game publishing arm of The Walt Disney Company, announced that they had acquired Avalanche Software for an undisclosed sum.[1] In November 2006, Buena Vista Games formed a sister studio, Fall Line Studio, that would create Disney titles for Nintendo DS and Wii platforms.[2] Disney Interactive Studios (DIS) merged Fall Line Studio into its sister studio, Avalanche Software, in January 2009.[3]

In October 2012, Disney Interactive Studios announced "Toy Box", a cross-platform gaming initiative where Pixar and Disney characters can interact from a console game to multiple mobile and online applications.[4] In January 2013, Avalanche Software unveiled the toys-to-life cross-platform game Disney Infinity based on Toy Story 3: The Video Game's "Toy Box" mode crossed with a toyline.[5]

On May 10, 2016, with a lack of growth in the toys-to-life market and increasing developmental costs, Disney discontinued Disney Infinity and closed down Avalanche Software, and Disney Interactive Studios as a whole.[6] Many former Avalanche Software workers were employed by castAR to create a new studio in Salt Lake City.[7]

On January 24, 2017, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment announced it had acquired the studio from Disney, including its Octane engine software, and re-opened the studio, with John Blackburn returning as its CEO. The studio's first title under their new owner was Cars 3: Driven to Win, a companion game based on the Cars 3 film.[8]

Games developedEdit

Year Title
1995 2 on 2 Open Ice Challenge
1996 Ultimate Mortal Kombat 3 (port)
Mortal Kombat Trilogy
1997 Mortal Kombat Mythologies: Sub-Zero (port)
1998 Off Road Challenge (port)
1999 Rampage 2: Universal Tour
2000 Rampage Through Time
Rugrats in Paris: The Movie
Prince of Persia: Arabian Nights
2001 NCAA College Football 2K2
2002 NCAA College Football 2K3
Rugrats: Royal Ransom
2003 Tak and the Power of Juju
2004 Tak 2: The Staff of Dreams
2005 Tak: The Great Juju Challenge
Dragon Ball Z: Sagas
Chicken Little
2006 25 to Life
Disney's Chicken Little: Ace in Action
2007 Meet the Robinsons
2008 Bolt
2010 Toy Story 3: The Video Game
2011 Cars 2
2013 Disney Infinity
2014 Disney Infinity: Marvel Super Heroes
2015 Disney Infinity 3.0
2017 Cars 3: Driven to Win


  1. ^ Kawamoto, Dawn (April 19, 2005). "Disney scoops up Avalanche, founds new studio". GameSpot. Retrieved October 22, 2012.
  2. ^ "Disney to make Nintendo games". Los Angeles Times. November 8, 2006. Retrieved October 19, 2012.
  3. ^ Sinclair, Brendan (January 29, 2009). "Disney layoffs hit Turok, Bolt studios". GameSpot. Retrieved October 22, 2012.
  4. ^ Barnes, Brooks (October 21, 2012). "Disney, Struggling to Find Its Digital Footing, Overhauls Disney.com". The New York Times. Retrieved October 23, 2012.
  5. ^ Lang, Derrik J. (January 15, 2013). "Disney unveils own 'Skylanders'-like franchise". Business Week. Retrieved January 30, 2013.
  6. ^ Alexander, Julia (May 10, 2016). "Disney is ending its Infinity video game line, shutting down Avalanche Software". Polygon. Retrieved November 23, 2016.
  7. ^ Conditt, Jessica (September 15, 2016). "Augmented reality studio castAR picks up 'Disney Infinity' devs". Engadget. Retrieved September 15, 2016.
  8. ^ McAloon, Alissa (January 24, 2017). "Disney Infinity dev revived and re-opened by Warner Bros". Gamasutra. Retrieved January 24, 2017.

External linksEdit