The Swedish game company, Embracer Group, has announced that it's acquiring three major Square Enix Western studios, Crystal Dynamics, Eidos-Montréal, and Square Enix Montréal, with their respective IPs.
The unexpected announcement comes from Embracer Group's latest press release alongside one from Square Enix. Eidos-Montréal, the studio behind games like Deus Ex, Tomb Raider, and Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy, has also shared an official statement on its social media.
Embracer Group acquires Square Enix key Western studios for USD 300 million
Embracer Group is paying Square Enix a total of $300 million for acquiring these companies and their IPs. The deal is reportedly to close sometime between July and September 2022.
According to Embracer's official press report, "the acquisition includes ~1,100 employees across three studios and eight global locations. The total purchase price amounts to USD 300 million on a cash and debt-free basis paid in full at closing."
The publisher's official press report explained the deal meant for the company and how it would prioritise developmental and publishing focus on its Japanese studios. With that said, "The Company's overseas studios will continue to publish franchises such as Just Cause, Outriders, and Life is Strange."
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While the deal may come off unexpected to many, it's no surprise that some of the recent game releases from Square Enix's Western studios have underperformed in terms of sales. The publisher has been transparent about the situation, publically stating whenever a game release didn't meet its sales expectation.
Games like Deus Ex Mankind Divided, Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy, and Marvel's Avengers, are just a few prominent examples. On the other hand, Embracer "expects significant net sales and operational EBIT contribution once the new slate of AAA pipeline titles releases", like the recently announced fourth Tomb Raider game, in development at Crystal Dynamics.
What happens to the existing IPs after the deal closes?
With Embracer in charge, there's a possibility that we may finally get new entries in the Deus Ex, Thief, and the Legacy of Kain franchises that have remained dormant. Interestingly enough, Embracer's press release also shed some light on what fans can expect next from Crystal Dynamics, Eidos Montreal, and Square Enix Montréal.
Additionally, Crystal Dynamics is working on the Perfect Dark reboot in collaboration with Xbox's The Initiative studio. As mentioned before, it's also working on a brand new Tomb Raider game; however, the details surrounding the game's development have remained paper-thin at the time of this writing.
Eidos Montréal recently released Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy and is now working on a "host of AAA projects including both new releases from beloved franchises and original IP." Square Enix Montréal released Hitman Sniper: The Shadows in 2021 and is now working on a Space Invaders game.
According to Embarker, "The studio will continue developing and operating memorable mobile games based on AAA IP."
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Featured image courtesy of Eidos Montréal.