The Bungie studio, developer of flagship titles such as Halo and Destiny, joins the Sony family. “I’m absolutely thrilled to welcome Bungie to the PlayStation family…and I know everyone at PlayStation Studios will be excited to learn and share things together”, tweeted Hermen Hulst, director of Playstation Studios on the sidelines of the announcement. Both parties confirmed the news on Monday, January 31.
According to sources familiar with the matter, adopting this new family member would have cost Sony $3.6 billion. Separately, shortly after the announcement, Sony stock soared 5.96% to $113 on the New York Stock Exchange.
Synergy and creativity
Sony Group CEO Kenichiro Yoshida said Sony would use its technology and entertainment resources to ” support Bungie’s evolution and expand its ability to create iconic universes across multiple platforms and media.” Remarks supported by James Ryan, CEO of Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE): ” Bungie’s world-class expertise in cross-platform development and game services will help us realize our vision of extending PlayStation to hundreds of millions of players. Bungie is a great innovator who has developed incredible tools that will push PlayStation Studios to new heights. »
In response, Bungie CEO Pete Parsons said via a blog post: ” In Sony, we have found a partner who supports us unconditionally and completely, and who wants to help us quickly realize our vision of creating games that cross generations. According to the manager, the first effect of the acquisition will be massive recruitment to support this vision.
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Independence and ambitions
Under the terms of the contract between the two companies, Bungie will remain independent, operating as an exclusive subsidiary of Sony. ” We remain masters of our destiny. We will continue to publish independently and develop our games creatively,” Parsons said. This detail is confirmed by SIE CEO James Ryan: “I want to be clear with the community [des jeux vidéo]. Bungie will remain a cross-platform studio and independent publisher. »
The acquisition comes just days after Microsoft announced it would buy Activision for around $69 billion; even earlier, on January 11, Take-Two preceded the Redmond giant by announcing the acquisition of mobile application developer Zinga, for no less than $12.7 billion.
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These recent acquisitions would be, according to Reuters, the fruit of a competition to create virtual worlds, stimulated among other things by the recent advent of the metaverse. Last year, deals covering video game studios totaled $85 billion, according to Drake Star Partners. This is almost triple the figure recorded in 2020 and it would not be surprising to see this amount climb.
Indeed, Sony on the sidelines of its recent announcement said, through James Ryan, that it would make other studio acquisitions in the months to come. Already in 2021, the group acquired five studios, namely Housemarque, Bluepoint Games, Firesprite, Nixxes, and Valkyrie, in line with its ambition to develop its live services and expand beyond the “historic heart of the console”.
For its part, Bungie has indicated that it will take advantage of this new partnership with Sony to work on new projects, apart from Destiny 2.
Founded in 1991, Bungie is a Washington-based company. The studio, which currently has around 1,000 employees, was acquired in 2001 by Microsoft before becoming independent again in 2007. Three years later, it signed a 7-year game development contract with Activision, during which time was born his famous game Destiny. Now she intends to take advantage of the Sony umbrella to “to become a global multimedia entertainment company”.