Embracer Group is planning to take over both Avengers and Guardians Of The Galaxy from Square Enix despite them losing money.
As fans and analysts alike try to make sense of Square Enix’s shock $300 million sale of Tomb Raider, and almost all their Western franchises and developers, the answer to the most burning question – why? – is becoming clearer.
According to senior MST Financial analyst David Gibson, the reason Square Enix sold Crystal Dynamics and Eidos-Montréal is relatively simple: between the Marvel Avengers and Guardians Of The Galaxy games they lost the company $200 million.
That still doesn’t explain why you’d sell off the studios, and franchises like Tomb Raider and Deus Ex, but it seems Square Enix had simply had enough of the North American developers. Although as Gibson points out, the idea that they needed to sell them to invest more into blockchain technology is silly.
Despite the $200 million loss, Square Enix is a perfectly solvent company and isn’t short of cash to invest in future projects, which makes the explanation seem almost absurd.
At first, Embracer Group, the $11 billion company that bought Tomb Raider and the rest, said relatively little about the sale but in an investor call last night they stated that, pending Disney’s approval, they’d take over as publisher of both Avengers and Guardians Of The Galaxy.
That’s very straightforward for Guardians but Avengers is a live service game that’s supposed to be getting a constant stream of new content, but it’s currently unclear if Embracer is willing to fund that.
It’s not just a question of money either, as it would mean continuing to tie up Crystal Dynamics on a game that is not widely popular and which even Square Enix admitted was the wrong fit for the studio.
Embracer is already teasing new projects from both developers but has confirmed that Crystal Dynamics will continue its work on the new Tomb Raider.
If they expect them to work on an additional new game on top of that then it may mean that, given it’s never been very popular, Avengers is deprioritised even if work does continue in some fashion.
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