Sony has been making some serious moves with the expansion of the PlayStation Brand. Last fiscal year which officially ended in March 2022, Sony Interactive Entertainment acquired five studios — Housemarque (developer of Returnal), Nixxes Software (a PC games port specialist), Firesprite (UK-based studio comprised of former Studio Liverpool members), Bluepoint (Demon’s Souls Remake), and Seattle-based studio Valkyrie Entertainment (a development support studio).
Recently, PlayStation Boss Jim Ryan commented on SIE’s and PlayStation’s momentum stating that Sony isn’t done with studio acquisitions in order to further expand its first-party portfolio. “We’ve been extremely active in the area of M&A (mergers and acquisitions) and investment,” said Ryan during a PlayStation business briefing session on Thursday. The purpose of these investments is to increase our core strength at PlayStation Studios, but also to acquire expertise in areas of game development where historically we have not had a significant presence.”
Ryan’s comments were made during a recent Q&A section of the company’s recent business briefing. He went on to explain how inorganic growth will be required as Sony transitions from its traditional development strategy into one with a “much wider market reach”. Sony’s acquisition of Nixxes helped out in the recent porting of some of PlayStation’s best titles to PC and Sony is exploring the idea of entering the mobile phone market.
Sony’s buyout of Bungie, which is designed to help the company as it more heavily moves into the live-service area, was also referenced. “The planned Bungie partnership is a great example,” he said, reiterating that Sony wants the Destiny studio to help it gain a greater presence in the live service market. As talks are ongoing for PlayStation to fully acquire Haven Studios and Bungie, this means that more than half of PlayStation’s overall investment would potentially go to titles marketed as a Game as a Service (GaaS).
Ryan also said Sony expects half of its releases to be on PC and mobile by its fiscal year ending in March 2026 and that acquisitions will likely be necessary to achieve this target.
Ryan wrapped up by saying: “And to the extent that potential targets fit with our strategy, to the extent that potential targets allow us to accelerate the way in which we are able to deliver on our strategy, we will certainly consider farther M&A activity to add to our business portfolio.”
Which studios could we expect to see join the PlayStation family in the coming months? Do you feel that Sony’s focus on Games as a Service outside of creating single-player experiences could possibly hurt their brand? We’d love to hear your thoughts!
(PlayStation Studios feature image © Sony, PlayStation.com)
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