Ion Storm was a Dallas, Texas based developer of computer games founded, in 1996, by John Romero & Tom Hall, both formaly of ID Software. Quickly after forming, they signed a licensing deal with Eidos Interactive to produce 6 computer games to help them start up.
In 1999, Eidos acquired 51% of the company after a string of problems at the Dallas Head office such as developement delays, over spending and a lavish location of the penthouse of the Chase Tower.
In late 1996, Warren Spector was asked to found the Austin branch of Ion Storm by John Romero, who had offered him the chance to make the 'game of his dreams' without creative interference and with a big marketing budget. Spector accepted and developed 'Deus Ex'.
With the demise of Looking Glass Studios, Eidos Interactive secured the rights to the Thief franchise and together with Spector tried to relocate as many of the Looking Glass team to Austin as was possible.
By keeping well clear of the troubles that had plauged the Dallas office, Ion Storm (Austin) was seen as more successful due to having commercal hits with the highly successful and critically acclaimed Deus Ex, Deus Ex: Invisible War and Thief: Deadly Shadows, compared to to Dallas's Dominion: Storm over Gift 3, Daikatana and Anachronox.
After the closure of the Dallas office in 2001, the Austin office remained open to produce Deus Ex: Invisible War and Thief: Deadly Shadows until Spector's departure to "pursue personal interests outside the company" in 2004, but also due to problems and dissatisfaction he felt over his management of Deadly Shadows and Invisible war. A number of other senior staff also left at about the same time. On February 9, 2005, after completing the 6 game contract, Eidos announced that the Austin office would also close, meaning the end of Ion Storm as a company.