Square Enix have sold Eidos, Crystal Dynamics, and Square Enix Montréal to Embracer Group
In a deal announced yesterday, May 2nd, Swedish company Embracer Group will acquire the three studios from Square Enix for $300 million. The sale includes IPs like Tomb Raider, Deus Ex, Thief, Legacy of Kain, and more. The company states that they expect the deal to close sometime in July to September of this year.
Embracer Group, formerly Nordic Games and then THQ Nordic, has been snatching up game studios left and right since 2017. Their subsidiaries include Gearbox, Deep Silver, 3D Realms and many, many more.
Speaking about the acquisition, Embracer Group CEO Lars Wingefors said:
We are thrilled to welcome these studios into the Embracer Group. We recognize the fantastic IP, world class creative talent, and track record of excellence that have been demonstrated time and again over the past decades. It has been a great pleasure meeting the leadership teams and discussing future plans for how they can realize their ambitions and become a great part of Embracer.Lars Wingefors, Co-founder and Group CEO
Why let these IPs go?
With these being such prestigious IPs, it’s initially hard to see why Square Enix would sell them off.
However, as the senior analyst for Niko Partners Daniel Ahmad says, these companies have been underperforming for Square Enix recently. According to documents from a press release by Square Enix, the profits from these companies have been very low compared to the money spent on them.
With this sale, Square Enix will be focusing on their Japanese studios. Games like Final Fantasy XIV have been massively profitable for the company, so they will no doubt get the lion’s share of attention going forward.
The company also states that this sale “enables the launch of new businesses by moving forward with investments in fields including blockchain, AI, and the cloud.” Company president Yosuke Matsuda stated in an open letter in January that these three areas would be a focus for the company. No doubt this will mean NFTs and the metaverse will soon creep their way into future Square Enix titles.
Embracer the future: projects in the pipeline
This news comes not long after Crystal Dynamics announced they were working on a new Tomb Raider game in Unreal Engine 5 during the State of Unreal broadcast last month. The press release mentions this as one of “several AAA projects” that the company is working on.
Embracer doesn’t mention the other IPs previously owned or worked on by Square Enix’s western studios. The company has made no statement on the Marvel games made by Crystal Dynamics and Eidos. These are Marvel’s Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy respectively. Moreover, the Sleeping Dogs IP would no doubt be up for grabs too.
However, Embracer may have already gotten these IPs. The press release mentions that “more than 50 back-catalogue games” are a part of the deal. Either way, it’ll be interesting to see which new IPs the company has and what they’ll do with them.
Which games would you want to see in that lineup? Do you think a new Deus Ex or Legacy of Kain is just around the corner? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below! Or hop over to our Discord to chat with us about all things gaming and entertainment!