Infogrames

From the Audiovisual Identity Database, the motion graphics museum



Background

Infogrames Entertainment SA was founded in 1983 by Bruno Bonnell. Over the years of its existence, Infogrames became famous for many titles, including Alone in the Dark, Shadow of the Comet, and Hogs of War.

The company began to expand further in the mid-90's after applying an "Expand through Acquisition" policy by purchasing out other companies left and square, including Ocean Software, Philips Media, Gremlin Interactive, Accolade, GT Interactive Software, Humongous Entertainment, Shiny Entertainment, Eden Games and Hasbro Interactive (with the MicroProse and Atari brands).

Following the rebrand of their subsidiaries under the Atari name in May 2003, Infogrames' presence was reduced to solely being a holding company that licensed out the Atari brand name from Atari Interactive. In October 2008, the company fully purchased Atari, Inc. and in May 2009, was rebranded as "Atari SA", after many financial struggles.



1st Logo (1984-1996)

Visuals: Against a white background is a tall black armadillo with a rather sinister expression on its face, and 5 colored bands across the middle in this order: blue, green, yellow, dark red, and red. Surrounding the armadillo at its feet is 2 black lines, along with the text "INFOGRAMES" below everything.

Trivia: The choice of an armadillo as the company's logo was because the animal "has always survived changes to its environment, from the melting of glaciers to the worst of heat waves", when the company moved to Villeurbanne.

Later Variantː Starting in 1991, the logo was changed to become dark grey, a large rectangle is added below the text, and the color bands are less saturated.

Variants:

  • The quality and size of the logo depended on the game.
  • On some North American released games, "I*MOTION" replaces "INFOGRAMES".
  • On Astérix & Obelix for the SNES, the grey bar gains the text "ENTERTAINMENT" in white.

Technique: A still computerized graphic.

Audio: None or the opening theme of the game.

Availability: It appears on several games from the time period, such as Astérix & Obelix for the SNES.

2nd Logo (1996-November 30, 2001)


Visuals: On a white background, a black stroke draws a curve, which starts to swirl around several times in a spring-like spiral shape, all the while it pans to the left. When the spirals are finished, the stroke then does a small loop before drawing a large curve and hooking on the end, all the while 2 feet, an eye and colored bands (blue, green, orange, red, and purple in that order) fade in, forming an abstract rendition of the armadillo logo. "INFOGRAMES" then fades in below.

Variants:

  • A still version exists, which was spotted on pre-2000 Game Boy Color games and on DOS versions of The Adventures of Tintin: Prisoners of the Sun, Tintin in Tibet, The Smurfs, Asterix and Obelix and Spirou.
  • A few games feature the still version with the armadillo completely in yellow and on a black background. The games include Mission: Impossible, Starshot: Space Circus Fever (with the Nintendo logo), and V-Rally Edition '99 on the N64, and an animated variant appeared on Independence War - Defiance (an expansion pack to Independence War that was bundled with the base game).
  • On Mission: Impossible for the PS1, its similar to the yellow variant, but the armadillo is fully in wine red.
  • On Ballistic for the PS1, copyright information appears when the logo finishes.
  • On Bugs Bunny: Lost in Time, the still logo is flat. Then it cuts to the Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment logo.
  • On Slave Zero, the words "PRESS START BUTTON" are seen under the still logo.
  • On Test Drive Off-Road 3 and Ballistic for PS1, after the logo finishes, copyright info appears below the logo. This logo is plastered by the next logo on the European version of the former, which was renamed 4X4 World Trophy.
  • On Tabaluga for GBC, the logo is still and "DEUTSCHLAND" is added below.

Technique: 2D animation enhanced with 3D effects.

Audio: A synthesized note with a faint arpeggio and whoosh in the background, then a 6-note trumpet melody, with the last note combined with an orchestral hit. There is also a synthesized buzz when the feet, rainbow "stripes" and the eye of the armadillo fade in.

Audio Variant: None or the game's opening theme for the still versions.

Availability:

  • The still version first appeared on Asterix & Obelix for MS-DOS. It was seen on N64 and GBC games of the era.
  • The animated version first appeared on V-Rally for PS1, and appeared on most of the company's PS1, PC and early Dreamcast titles from the time. Strangely, the last game to feature this logo was the PS1 version and later copies of the PC version of Nicktoons Racing, even though the entire packaging, title screen, and GBA version feature the next logo.

3rd Logo (February 29, 2000-May 9, 2003)



Visuals: The screen cuts from black to see a shiny black 3D line de-thickening itself on a flashing rainbow background. The line starts to wiggle and stretch (like a radio-wave), and then snap-compresses itself together like a spring. The line loosens itself to reveal a heavily spiral-stylized armadillo. The armadillo then becomes a 3D flat drawing, and the word "INFOGRAMES" in a black rectangle-like shape fades in and zooms out in front of the logo. It lands on the logo as the background turns white. A shadow fades in below the logo, and then the entire thing cuts to black.

Triviaː The logo can be seen on Ralph's TV screen on Sheep, Dog, 'n' Wolf (or Looney Tunes: Sheep Raider in North America) as an Easter egg.

Variants:

  • A still version exists. Sometimes, the logo is in the print style seen on game cases by this company, though this variant on some GBA games like Backyard Baseball could have its colors inverted, with a copyright notice below.
  • Another variant has the armadillo standing on the left side of the name banner. This was mainly used for packaging.
  • On the PS2 version of Splashdown and Stuntman, only the banner appears on a blue background, followed by the 2001 Atari logo. The 2002 version of Le Mans 24 Hours uses a red background.
  • On RollerCoaster Tycoon for Xbox, the logo is inverted, still and pans from bottom to top, plastering the Hasbro Interactive logo. RollerCoaster Tycoon 2 has the logo on a white square over a black background, and pans from top to bottom.
  • For the Lyons House division, it uses the same animation, but when it ends, the armadillo fades out and "Lyons House" writes itself below the banner. It uses a droning synth after the usual music. It is followed by the Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment logo and is seen on Sheep, Dog, 'n' Wolf (or Looney Tunes: Sheep Raider in North America).
  • On the GBA version of Zapper: One Wicked Cricket!, the full armadillo logo appears without the banner, which is instead below it.
    • On Titeuf: Ze Gag Machine, the banner doesn't appear at all, instead being replaced with copyright information.

Technique: CGI by Florian Perret and Attik.

Audio: Several weird whooshing and stretching sounds and a synthesized hit (most of them are from Hanna-Barbera's sound effects library), ending in a heavy synth chord.

Audio Variants:

  • The still version is silent, or may have the opening theme of the game over it.
  • On Grand Prix 4, race car sounds are heard, although if one listens closely, the original sounds are still heard.
  • On the 2014 iOS version of Pajama Sam: No Need to Hide When It's Dark Outside, the music is high pitched.
  • On the Xbox version of RollerCoaster Tycoon, the same coaster hill sound from the Hasbro Interactive variant is used.
  • On RollerCoaster Tycoon 2, a different coaster hill sound is used.
  • Ghost Vibration has the music running faster and is also higher pitched.
  • On Blue's Clues: Blue's Reading Time Activities, the still version has the tail end of the Humongous Entertainment drum roll playing over it.

Availability: Used on lots of games from this period, produced by Infogrames and/or its divisions.

  • Games branded under the Atari name however (such as Enter the Matrix) do not have this logo (except for Ghost Vibration, which had the regular Infogrames logo and no Atari logo outside the packaging).
  • The still version appears on mostly Game Boy Color and Game Boy Advance titles.
    • The version with the armadillo atop the banner appears on Blender Bros. (inverted), Dragon Ball Z: Collectable Card Game, Dragon Ball Z: The Legacy of Goku, Dungeons and Dragons: Eye of the Beholder, Nascar Heat 2002, and Nicktoons Racing.
    • The animated version appears on Lucky Luke: Wanted! and Mr. Nutz, although compressed due to GBA video limitations.
  • The still version (white on black) appeared on the 2015 iOS versions of Spy Fox 3: Operation Ozone and Freddi Fish and the Case of the Creature of Coral Cove, alongside the 1996-2002 Humongous logo, due to an editing mistake. The normal version also appeared on the 2014 iOS version of Pajama Sam: No Need to Hide When It's Dark Outside, due to (yet) another editing mistake.
  • It doesn't appear on any Sega or Bandai titles they distributed in Europe, despite the print logo appearing on the back.
Infogrames
Atari SA
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