Former Tolkien Game Publisher Calls it Quits – ICE melts

by Oct 27, 2000Games

The Middle-earth customizable card game logo.
Thanks to David R. for alerting us to the final dissolution of Iron Crown Enterprises (ICE), the former publishers of the Middle-earth Customizable Card game and Middle-earth role-playing games.

As we reported in September of 1999, ICE has declared bankruptcy, changing their filing from Chapter 11 to Chapter 7. Here is ICE’s announcement on the complete dissolution of their 2 decade-old business:

I regret to say that, after 20+ years and after having published hundreds of adventure game products, Iron Crown Enterprises is closing its doors. We have filed a voluntary petition in the United States Bankruptcy Court pursuant to Chapter 7 of Title 7 of the United States Code, which governs the liquidation of companies. We are converting our Chapter 11 petition to a Chapter 7. We are beginning steps toward dissolution.

We enter this termination period with great sadness and more than a little shame. At the same time, we are very proud of our work, of the people we have trained and nurtured, and of the many rich experiences and friendships we have been blessed to receive. We are especially proud of having such a great group of loyal customers. All of us have been honored to serve the adventure game market with what have usually been labors of real love. While we have often been financially poor, we have always been enriched by our trade. Thank you for letting us serve you.

We have created some of the best and most durable games around. These designs will outlive ICE. Others will pick up the torch, refine them, and make them their own. Our legacy will be in good hands–which are those of the consumer.

ICE’s assets will now be in the hands of a bankruptcy trustee, probably one of two local, independent attorneys who specialize in corporate dissolutions. The trustee will receive his appointment within the next week. He will then assess the scenario, value the assets, catalog the debts, and determine their own plan for selling off our property and satisfying our obligations. Our building is already sold. Closing is 1 December. We made a tidy profit. Still, there are many, many more debts to pay. It is up to the trustee how to prioritize and pay them. The trustee will attempt to sell the entire company, as a whole or in parts, whichever method brings the best price.

All of us at ICE are very sorry. We hoped to serve you through our children and children’s children. This is not to be. Instead, we will move on. We will let others fulfill the needs we have addressed these last two splendid decades.

Again, for all of us at ICE–Coleman, Bruce, Heike, Don, Jason, Steve, Howard, Bob, and the rest of the team, we thank you and wish you well. So long.

–Pete Fenlon


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