Square Enix sells a whole catalog of game brands including Tomb Raider, Deus Ex, Legacy of Kain and many others. The developer studios Crystal Dynamics, Eidos Montreal and Square Enix Montreal also change hands and from now on belong to the constantly growing gaming giants the Embracer Group. While the deal isn’t finalized yet, it could serve as a prelude to Square Enix’s plans to buy it out.
Square Enix brands sold for surprisingly little money
According to Square Enix and the Embracer Group The developer studios Crystal Dynamics, Eidos Montreal and Square Enix Montreal as well as all associated brands are to be sold for only 300 million US dollars. The total seems surprisingly low for what is changing hands here. After all, not so long ago, Embracer Group had $1.3 billion just for Borderlands-Maker Gearbox issued.
New Deus Ex and Legacy of Kain? Of course, this gives some fans hope that slumbering names will be brought out of their slumber. A new Deus Ex would certainly be welcomed by many, and the same should apply to a sequel to the long-neglected Legacy of Kain series or a new Thief.
Owned by Embracer Group a whole lot now. Even before this deal, the Swedish company was probably the largest gaming company in Europe and sooner or later it is apparently preparing to take on Epic, Sony, Tencent and Co. Among other things, THQ Nordic and all its subsidiaries belong to the Embracer Group. You can read more about it here:
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Square Enix may want to purge for takeover
Why all this? The question is not only burning under our fingernails. But there are several possible answers.
- Brands have “underperformed”: Despite good reviews and popularity, brands like Deus Ex or Tomb Raider have not met Square Enix’s (financial) expectations. Apparently, it’s more worthwhile for the company to dump it so cheaply than to take further risks in developing sequels. That had been planned for quite a while, reports analyst Daniel Ahmad Twitter.
- Purged for possible takeover? Square Enix may want to prepare for a takeover and become more attractive to Japanese companies. Apparently they were much more interested final fantasy, DragonQuest and Co, than “Western” brands like Deus Ex and Tomb Raider. The journalist Derek Strickland, for example, assumes this (via Twitter) out of. Both Sony and Microsoft might be interested.
- Blockchain and the cloud: According to Square Enix, the proposed transaction will help open up new lines of business and enable investments. Among other things, in the areas of “blockchain, AI and the cloud” (via VGC). Which, in turn, fits perfectly with what Square Enix President Yosuke Matsuda said a month ago:
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Either way, it should remain very exciting to observe further developments. Both in terms of Square Enix and whether the company will actually be acquired, as well as what happens to the studios and brands now that they are part of the Embracer Group.
Which titles would you like to see revived? Who do you think could buy Square Enix?