Realtime Worlds Ltd was a video game developer based in Dundee, Scotland. It was founded in early 2002 by David Jones (formerly of DMA Design) who developed the popular franchises Grand Theft Auto (GTA) and Lemmings.
Realtime Worlds was the largest independent game developer in Scotland with over 200 employees as well as a small Boulder, Colorado office.
The private developer became defunct in 2010.
The first release under the name Realtime Worlds was the critically acclaimed 2007 action-adventure, third-person game, Crackdown, an Xbox 360 exclusive title. In 2010 they released a massively multiplayer online game for Microsoft Windows, titledAPB (All Points Bulletin), which had been in development for five years, and was hoped to generate upwards of "hundreds of millions of pounds".
In 2007, at Develop magazine's Industry Excellence Awards the company was nominated in a record-breaking seven categories, and took home the awards for Innovation and New UK/European Studio. Company chairman Ian Hetherington was also crowned Development Legend. At the 2007 British Academy of Film and Television Arts Video Game Awards ceremony, Crackdown was nominated in five categories and won two, for Action and Adventure and Use of Audio. In 2008, Crackdownwas honoured as Best Debut by the GDC's Game Developers Choice awards.
On 14 February 2008, it was announced that Realtime Worlds had secured US$50M in funding from a consortium led by venture capitalists Maverick Capital and New Enterprise Associates and joined by the WPP Group, a London-based advertising firm. The funds are expected to be used towards "continued expansion".
On 1 May 2010 Realtime Worlds annual accounts revealed a further US$21M investment was made in the company in January 2010. This brings the total investment in Realtime Worlds since 2006 to US$101M.
On 29 June 2010, after five years of development, with lengthy delays, APB was released to the general public. As of the 15 July, APB has a metacritic score of 58/100.
On 7 July 2010, Realtime Worlds announced that it was to restructure its work force to focus more on providing "total support" for APB.
On 16 September 2010, Realtime Worlds announced that it will be shutting down APB's servers for good.[11