Every company is talking to other businesses at one stage or another about acquisitions, so it's no real surprise to learn that Sony wasn't the only firm sniffing around Returnal developer Housemarque. The PlayStation buyout is set in stone now, but it could easily have gone another way as an interview with Finnish outlet Yle.fi reveals offers were also lobbied from companies in the US, China, and Sweden.
Ilari Kuittinen, CEO of Housemarque, said the "usual suspects" from the aforementioned countries had been interested before Sony sealed the deal. "In our discussions, it became clear that Sony wanted to buy us because we are doing something that others are not doing. Their starting point has not been that we would start making games according to the formula defined by Sony."
Kuittinen then goes on to explain how the now permanent inclusion in PlayStation Studios allows the team "financial freedom to develop the company towards the best gaming studios in the world. It allows us to create new gaming experiences that are even bigger and more ambitious." This is something the studio touched upon on the day of the acquisition in another interview with GQ, where it described Returnal as a "stepping stone". Future titles may be "be even bigger and even more ambitious".
[source yle.fi, via thegamepost.com]
Looking forward to what they can produce in the years to come, another solid and not rushed acquisition
Yes, I wanted to buy Housemarque.
I offered 2,73 Euro.
Kinda cray finding out they neglected me by hearing the acquisition of Housemarque by Sony on this very site for the very first time. Still in shook tbh.
Anyone else want to be acquired for 2,23€?
Btw I spent 0,50 Euro for a Popsicle
Very smart purchase and looking forward to seeing what other hits come from this great studio.
This move was always coming from Sony though. They might have had to go sooner than they planned, but given the other acquisitions/rumoured acquisitions recently it doesn't seem like their plans have been impacted that much in this regard.
I know there are a lot of complaints about PlayStation lately, but I'm still excited to see what they're building.
Cannot wait for their next project 😬
Sweden: Embracer Group?
@blinx01 Sounds about right. Could be a few others in the US as well, I suppose.
Housemarque is an awesome studio, and deserves this success for sure. Returnal is my GOTY so far, hopefully this extra $$$ helps them playtest and release a less buggy game next time around (I’m sure it will).
To be honest, I think Housemarque would choose to go with Sony regardless of who the other parties are. Its clear they have a great relationship and familiarity with the company and its specific hardware.
If you were looking for the 'right' company for Housemarque, its long term success and growth, the most obvious Publisher for them would be Sony based on their history to date.
Am I the only one worried about “bigger, more ambitious?”
Housemarque is practically alone in designing tight, arcade inspired games with skill mechanics and tons of replay value for a big publisher. They’re a close as we have to a modern day Treasure. I’d hate to lose them to the fluff and padding of the “bigger” AAA titles they seem to want to make.
Just trust them and give them money for a real Triple A production.
It will be great
I wonder if that Bluepoint announcement image was created because Sony were close to completing the acquisition, however other parties have made bids late in the process holding it all up? If MS missed out on Housemarque, for example, they're going to go extra hard to pull Bluepoint out from under Sony's nose.
I only tend to pop up here when I have a cynical theory (sorry about that).
Bluepoint games is next.make it happen .word life.word is bond.word to your mother.word up son
@blinx01 more likely EA or Take Two. Despite popular believe among these parts, Xbox is picking on their acquisitions. They do want to have at least some history of working together (not necessarily exclusively) and demand the studio has a very strong background shipping multi platform (this meaning PC + Console), Housemarque is a bit too focused on consoles for Xbox acquisition pattern.
I still firmly believe Sony have already acquired Bluepoint, but are waiting for a specific reveal to announce it, by which I mean I think the acquisition reveal will come shortly before or after PlayStation's next big event where they will reveal A) Bloodborne Director's Cut, or B) Metal Gear Solid Remake, or C) both.
There's no way the Bluepoint 'Welcome to the Family' banner was an accident.
@gregarus that is a cynical theory, for sure. I think the more likely explanation is that the Bluepoint announcement was meant for another event later in the year and all parties are going to pushback against the leak in order to salvage the PR oomph it was meant to have in the first place. There’s already some outlets reporting on rumours that the Bluepoint acquisition is meant for a summer games showcase that’s yet to be announced.
@Spiders I get where you’re coming from but I think Returnal proves that they can still do what makes them unique in the AAA space. It’s one of my favorite games this year (possibly even the favorite) and I’m very excited to see what they can do with even more resources (especially sharing PS Studios tech).
@blinx01 Out of all those companies, I'm glad Tencent didn't acquire the studio.
@Voltan I was hoping that was the case. Haven’t played Returnal yet but it’s the main reason I want a PS5.
This is why I am worried about SONY's laid back approach IF YOU SNOOZE YOU NORMALLY LOSE
Bigger? Better? Dudes, just remake Rezogun. 120 fps ray traced bonanza with VR support. C'mon, you know you want it.
@TheDudeElDuderino That's actually not a bad idea
Sounds like what happened with Nintendo and Next Level Games. Have a close relationship, the shareholders in Next Level wanted them to sell after the mega hit Luigi's Mansion 3 topped off constant progress and growing hit after hit, and Nintendo saw that and went "Like hell you are" before anyone else got in.
Sony and Nintendo learned from what happened with Rare, the minute the company mentions selling, you need to buy.
My PS5 is in eternal rest mode due to Returnal. Wake it up, progress, let it go back to sleep. I will make that fourth Biome.
So happy Sony was able to acquire them, looking forward to Housemarque's next project.
@lacerz lol good luck! Returnal will be my first game once I can get my hands on a PS5
@lacerz rotgland lobber! I just smashed the third boss without needing to heal. It hammered him.
took sony long enough. need to purchase bluepoint before it is too late if they haven't done so already. bluepoint is easily one of the most valuable developers in the world right now when you consider the pontential revenue a metal gear solid or silent hill remake would bank for sony. outside of those studios, i can't think of many other developers sony can purchase without breaking the bank. ready at dawn had so much potential but that ship has sailed... possibly sony's biggest mistake was how it handled RAD and the order: 1886 IP. quantic dream also comes to mind... seemed like a match made in heaven.
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