Sony's future and possible studio/publisher acquisitions

Eternal_Wings

Dein Nomos
24 Jun 2022
2,677
3,496



Hi passionate gamers,

I wanted to discuss with you which studios and maybe publishers we will see in the upcoming days, months or years. Don't get me wrong, it should be not a fire to lit console-wars. I just want to hear your opinions which studios or even publisher are realistic. You see the landscape of the gaming industry turned into an arms-race with companies like Microsoft, Tencent and Embracer Group, buying studios or publishers like there is no end. So we heard it more than one time confirmed from Sony execs like Jim Ryan or Kenshiro Yoshida they're not finished by long. So not long ago they hired a Director for acquisitions and complex mergers for Playstation division. So every thought, rumor or even maybe leak would be appreciated. Looking forward to exciting discussions with you!

Charts of possible targets and possibility - Credit to Desodeset (ResetEra)

PublishersValuePriceStaffPropertiesRegionsBenefitsNegativesChance
CD Projekt RED2.35B USD3B+ USD1000CyberpunkEastern EuropePremium releasesKnown crunch problemsPossible
The Witcher (video game rights, board games, visual novels and merchandise rights)WRPG experienceGoG as a DRM Free Store
Project HadarMultimedia successCultural problems? (Poland is known as anti-liberal state)
Huge potential for GaaS Spin-Offs
Pearl Abyss2.00B USD3B+ USD1000Black Desert Online, Crimson DesertSouth KoreaGeographical diversityCould be blasted by North Korean nuclear bomb.Possible
DokeVMMO Experience
Plan8Multiple Upcoming GaaS Titles
EVE Online
CAPCOM5.58B USD7B+ USD3000Resident Evil, Devil May Cry, Dragon's Dogma, PragmataJapanPremium ReleasesNot aware of anyVery likely
Monster Hunter, ExoprimalAppealing for both West and Japan
Street FighterStreet Fighter-EVO Synergy
Different Types of AAA Games (Horror, Action, RPG)
Large legacy beneficial for PS+ Premium
Square-Enix5.43B USD7B+ USD4000-4500Final FantasyJapanMost popular AAA JRPGsMany AA titles that don't fit SIE strategyVery likely
Dragon Quest, Kingdom Hearts, Nier, ForspokenThe biggest MMO currentlyNot the best management
Tons of smaller IPs and JRPGsBig potential on MobileSubsidiaries that are hard to intergrade (Taito, Gangan Comics). Could be beneficial for Sony Group.
Large legacy beneficial for PS+ Premium
Warner Bros Games2-4B USD2-4B USD2000Lego LicenseUS/UK/CANPremium ReleasesLicensing issuesUnlikely
Mortal KombatMortal Kombat-EVO SynergyMajority of titles are WB Discovery IPs
Potential DC/Warner Bros Pictures LicensesE-Rated GamesNot on sale currently?
Superhero AAA Games
Hi-Rez Studios1.5B1.5B500+SmiteUSGaaS experienceNot aware of anyPossible
PaladinsMultiple projects
Rogue CompanyEasier to integrate
Established console presence
Ubisoft3.58B5B20000Assassin's CreedEUAAA ExperienceHuge workforceVery unlikely
Rainbow Six, Ghost Recon, The DivisionEstablished franchisesBad management and culture
Far Cry, Watch Dogs, BG&ELarge catalog beneficial for PS+ Extra and PremiumLack of originality
Just Dance, Rayman, AnnoWorldwide presenceUnder control by Tencent
Embracer Group6.47B9B+15000Tomb Raider, Deus Ex, Legacy of Kain, ThiefEUHuge variety of IPs
Huge Workforce
Unlikely
Lord of the Rings, HellboyBeneficial for PS+Unproved in AAA development
Borderlands, Metro 2033, Dead Island, Saints RowPresence in games/multimedia/comicsA lot of smaller devs/IPs
Tons of smaller/midsized IPs (mainly from Europe)
Worldwide presence
Risky business
Sega Sammy3B4-5B7500Yakuza, PersonaJapanArms in Japan and the WestA lot of non-gaming activitiesUnlikely
SonicVariety of genresMost of the franchises are not blockbusters.
Fantasy Star, Virtua FighterLarge legacy beneficial for PS+ PremiumMany PC oriented devs
Total War, Company of Heroes, Football ManagerMultimedia presence


Part II of potential M&A targets (Studios) for SIE .


StudiosValuePriceStaffPropertiesRegionsBenefitsNegatives
Kojima Productions100-200M100-200M150Not anyJapanExtremely Effective TeamBuild around one person
Prestige DeveloperToo weird for mass audience
Interests in transmedia projects
High tech level
Arc System Works100-200M100-200M150Guilty Gear, BazBlueJapanEffective team"Too anime for PlayStation"
Specialized in fighting games
Synergy with EVO
From Software860M900M+350Sekiro, Tenchu, Armored Core, King's Field, Elden Ring (may be partially?)JapanSpecialized in RPG GamesNot any
Unique style
Prestige Developer
Effective team
Blockbuster Developer
Unseen0-500-5020 - 50Not anyJapanLow costStart Up Company
Can produce original and interesting titlesToo weird for mass audience
High Risk
JP Games50-100M50-100M20 - 50Not anyJapanLow costStart Up Company
Can produce AAA JRPGsPrevious Tabata's failures
Prestige DeveloperHigh Risk
Arrowhead Games50-100M50-100M100Not anySwedenSpecialized in Co-Op GamesNot proven in AAA Games
Established relationship with SIE
Remedy Games235M300M+300Alan Wake, Control (?)FinlandProven in AAA GamesLatest titles are not best sellers
Good StorytellersA partnership with Tencent (3.8%) for project Vanguard
Potential in GaaSPublishing deals with Epic and 505
People Can Fly250M300-400M500Painkiller, Bulletstorm, New IPPolandPotential in GaaSHave a little success in latest titles
Multiple projectsDeals with other publishers (Square Enix currently)
Rebel Wolves50-100M50-100M20 - 50Not anyPolandLow costStart Up Company
Huge potential in WRPGsHigh Risk
Techland1.5-2B1.5-2B400Dying Light, New Fantasy IP, Call of JuarezPolandBlockbuster ProvenMight have problems with crunch culture
Experience in Action RPGs
Lucid Games0-500-50150Not anyUKGood Support StudioNot proven in AAA Games
Established relationship with SIE
Ballistic Moon0-500-5050 - 100Not anyUKLow costNot proven in AAA Games
Already has relationship with SIEStart Up Company
Could produce unique horror gamesHigh Risk
IO Interactive100-200M100-200M300Hitman, James Bond LicenseDenmarkProven in AAA GamesAlready making a game for Xbox (MS might be preferred buyer)
Unique styleUnknown status of Hitman IP
Effective team
Asobo100-200M100-200M200Plague's TaleFranceHigh tech levelAlready making a game or two for Xbox (MS might be preferred buyer)
Proven in Third Person Storytelling GamesPublishing deal with Focus Home
Larian Studios100-200M100-200M300DivinityBelgiumWRPG ExperienceTencent has 30% Stake
Unique styleMay not fit SIE Strategy
Jetpack Interactive0-500-5050Not anyUSGood Support StudioToo small to be acquired. Better to be a partner
Established relationship with SIE
Ember Lab0-500-5050KenaUSUnique animated experienceMight have problems with management
Fitting SIE Style of games
Established relationship with SIE
Firewalk Studios100-200M100-200M100 - 150Not anyUSLow costStart Up Company
Big Potential in GaaSHigh Risk
Team of experienced devs
Deviation Games100-200M100-200M100 - 150Not anyUSLow costStart Up Company
Big Potential in GaaSHigh Risk
Team of experienced devs
Humanoid100-200M100-200M20 - 50Not anyCanadaLow costStart Up Company
Huge potential in WRPGsHigh Risk
Team of experienced devs
 
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Eternal_Wings

Eternal_Wings

Dein Nomos
24 Jun 2022
2,677
3,496
EMBER LAB
SLOCLAP S.A.S
Supergiant Games
BANDAI NAMCO ENTERTAINMENT
Capcom
Sega LTD
Square Enix
Good choices! Kena Bridge of Spirits was beautiful, so I would definitely appreciate it. Square Enix would be my bet and I think this the most likely publisher to be acquired by Sony. Square Enix really important for Sony.
 
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Eternal_Wings

Eternal_Wings

Dein Nomos
24 Jun 2022
2,677
3,496
I think Ubi could be interesting for Sony as they have some GAAS games and FPS that Sony is lacking at the moment.
Yo think so? Hm I am asking myself why then they bought Havenstudio in the first place?
The staff there are to 66% former Ubisoft employees and it seems they have kept that spirit. I could imagine they must have a similar working mentality to Ubisoft Montreal. The pros for Havenstudio is they are far more easy to handle and to optimize it's output. As I know Ubisoft has more than 20.000 employees and the company itself is rumored to be in a mess...
 

Darth Vader

I find your lack of faith disturbing
Founder
20 Jun 2022
7,365
10,931
I would love not to see any big publisher or studio acquisitions, with the exception of KojiPro or Square Enix.

Consolidation is never a good thing, and its a shame Microsoft decided to kick start that war

That said, I'd be happy if they acquired the likes of Ember Labs, etc. Smaller studios that have released good games.
 

Gediminas

Boy...
Founder
21 Jun 2022
6,183
7,863
how the things going, with Marvel and etc., it would be beneficial to buy WB.
also, souls games were forever with Playstation, and PS fans looking for the punishment :D so Kadokawa is no brainer, plus allings with all Sony business.

we have so many AAA game studios, would prefer some smaller for AA experiences like Asobo and etc.
there is some other prospects too.
 
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Eternal_Wings

Eternal_Wings

Dein Nomos
24 Jun 2022
2,677
3,496
I would love not to see any big publisher or studio acquisitions, with the exception of KojiPro or Square Enix.

Consolidation is never a good thing, and its a shame Microsoft decided to kick start that war

That said, I'd be happy if they acquired the likes of Ember Labs, etc. Smaller studios that have released good games.
Agree to 100%. As stated before I only want to see Square Enix under Sony's umbrella. Sony should secure them forever and I don't mind it if the smaller games like Octopath Traveller will continue to release on Nintendo platforms.
 

Darth Vader

I find your lack of faith disturbing
Founder
20 Jun 2022
7,365
10,931
Agree to 100%. As stated before I only want to see Square Enix under Sony's umbrella. Sony should secure them forever and I don't mind it if the smaller games like Octopath Traveller will continue to release on Nintendo platforms.

I've always been against moneyhats and big acquisitions - with the exceptions for smaller indies / AA developers and when the moneyhat is to fund the development of a game.

This industry is broken because there's a party that is not looking to add quality or walk their own path, but rather consolidate everything by brute forcing their way with money.

The pending recession will only add to the consolidation unfortunately.
 
OP
OP
Eternal_Wings

Eternal_Wings

Dein Nomos
24 Jun 2022
2,677
3,496
I've always been against moneyhats and big acquisitions - with the exceptions for smaller indies / AA developers and when the moneyhat is to fund the development of a game.

This industry is broken because there's a party that is not looking to add quality or walk their own path, but rather consolidate everything by brute forcing their way with money.

The pending recession will only add to the consolidation unfortunately.
As you said it yourself, it will unfortunately lead to consolidation of the gaming industry, wether Sony does participate or not. So at least if this kind of destiny is inevitable , I want only Sony to secure Square Enix. I would really cry hard if someone like Tencent or worse would buy them. I mean it's like 90% of Square's audiences are on Playstation. So hence why not welcoming them already to the Sony family.
 

PropellerEar

Veteran
Founder
21 Jun 2022
1,320
2,187
Yo think so? Hm I am asking myself why then they bought Havenstudio in the first place?
The staff there are to 66% former Ubisoft employees and it seems they have kept that spirit. I could imagine they must have a similar working mentality to Ubisoft Montreal. The pros for Havenstudio is they are far more easy to handle and to optimize it's output. As I know Ubisoft has more than 20.000 employees and the company itself is rumored to be in a mess...
That's a good point, I was thinking mostly about the game catalogue.
Yeah it's bit bloated with employees and problems😅
 

balrogboy

Well-known member
Icon Extra
21 Jun 2022
291
283



Hi passionate gamers,

I wanted to discuss with you which studios and maybe publishers we will see in the upcoming days, months or years. Don't get me wrong, it should be not a fire to lit console-wars. I just want to hear your opinions which studios or even publisher are realistic. You see the landscape of the gaming industry turned into an arms-race with companies like Microsoft, Tencent and Embracer Group, buying studios or publishers like there is no end. So we heard it more than one time confirmed from Sony execs like Jim Ryan or Kenshiro Yoshida they're not finished by long. So not long ago they hired a Director for acquisitions and complex mergers for Playstation division. So every thought, rumor or even maybe leak would be appreciated. Looking forward to exciting discussions with you!
Its just a thought but I really think sony should aquire a smaller indie publisher, and by that I mean something Devolver or Raw Fury. Sony biggest staple in the market is the AAA quality big titles but they used to be all over indies during the ps3 era. Thats something I miss and I think should be on their catalogue.
 

ksdixon

Dixon Cider Ltd.
22 Jun 2022
1,792
1,149
I want Sony to buy SuperMassive, blow their studio up like Insomniac and start giving us seasonal horror games tenpole events throughout the calendar. Dark Pictures Anthology at Halloween, Mid-Summer Murder in the summer time etc. Bring the idea back under inside the house, and have Dark Pictures Anthology/Namco agreement games be their 'Sunset Overdrive' moment before better support, investment and refinement. Leaverage Sony Pictures actors likenesses and deals, like we had the likenesses of the cheerleader from Heroes, or former WCW World Champion David Arquette playing characters. If something catches, maybe try a tv show etc? I want to see SuperMassive operate at larger capacity and make every game to Until Dawn's quality or better, ya know?
 

Kokoloko

Veteran
Icon Extra
21 Jun 2022
4,036
3,289
I was happy with Sony buying studios and making IP. But now that others are buying IP’s and publishers they had nothing to do with creating, I think Sony needs to acquire some before they are used and bought by others.

And just because some of these IP’s are not great now, they have potential. Just like bringing back Crash was a huge deal for fans aswell as other games.
Its the IPs that are important to me and how Playstation can manage them.


As Capcom won’t sell or neither will Namco. So the best Japanese options are:

Studios:
FromSoft
Kojima



Publishers:
Square: Final Fantasy, Final Fantasy Online, Dragon Quest, Kingdom Hearts. LIfe is Strange, Nier. And some more classic IP -
To me the value is less now that Tomb Raider, Soul Reaver, Dues Ex, Hitman are not longer there. Sony could of done some good stuff with Soul Reaver and Dues Ex could of filled the WRPG. But it would feel the JRPG gap they have plus a great online game in FF14/Online

Konami IP - MGS of course is a big one for fans. Silent Hill. CastleVania. Bomberman. Pro evolution. Suikoden. Taiko no Tatsujin is huge in Japan
Again, the studios and IP are dormant, but Playstation can do alot with the IP them. Or anyone else that buys them, at least create huge hype for the platform/publsiher.


Sega: Yakuza and Judgement series ( the studio is pretty good and the series is more popular than ever ) Atlus is probably amonst the most talented studios in Japan with Persona, SMT, Disgaea and their other games, along with their rumoured new IP.
Total War could fit the PC market well for Sony, as well as Football Manager. Beyonetta is a great action game.
Plus they have games like PSO that can be another online game for them, Virtua Fighter will be another fighter as they have invested Evo Community.
Plus loads of IP, that die hard fans will always go towards

Nihon Falcon:
Small but they have 2 great JRPG IP. Legend of Heroes and Ys.


Western Pubslishers:

EA and Take2 will be too expensive.

Ubisoft has great smaller titles but the open world games arent as good as Playstation’s so I see no need To buy them. Playstation needs some different genres

Warner - The best option in my opinion: Lego is huge. Harry Potter. Mortal Kombat. DC games, plus more IP

Theres loads of good smaller western studios too, like Playdead for example.


———-

To me its about protecting the old IP. If Platforms weren’t just buying IP they had nothing to do with creating like Xbox has, then I wouldn’t care.

I liked how Sony and others worked with studios exclusively, built a relationship with them and then acquired them. But the landscape has changed.
They need to buy publishers/IP before the big boys like google, amazon, MS buys more And makes them exclusive to their platform Which we have recently seen.


Sony is gonna create loads of great new IP No doubt. But the older IP will also bring die hard fans to or away from their current platform.
Like I said, I wasn’t one for Sony buying IP/Publishers. They havent bought an IP they havent co-created since Wipeout but the indusry is changing….. plus I wanna carry on playing Persona and Yakuza on my Playstation like I have done since PS1/PS2 Lol
 
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OP
OP
Eternal_Wings

Eternal_Wings

Dein Nomos
24 Jun 2022
2,677
3,496
I was happy with Sony buying studios and making IP. But now that others are buying IP’s and publishers they had nothing to do with creating, I think Sony needs to acquire some before they are used and bought by others.

As Capcom won’t sell or neither will Namco. So the best Japanese options are
And just because some of these IP’s are not great now, they have potential. Just like bringing back Crash was a huge deal for fans aswell as other games.
Its the IPs that are important to me and how Playstation can manage them.


Studios:
FromSoft
Kojima



Publishers:
Square: Final Fantasy, Final Fantasy Online, Dragon Quest, Kingdom Hearts. LIfe is Strange, Nier. And some more classic IP -
To me the value is less now that Tomb Raider, Soul Reaver, Dues Ex, Hitman are not longer there. Sony could of done some good stuff with Soul Reaver and Dues Ex could of filled the WRPG. But it would feel the JRPG gap they have plus a great online game in FF14/Online

Konami IP - MGS of course is a big one for fans. Silent Hill. CastleVania. Bomberman. Pro evolution. Suikoden. Taiko no Tatsujin is huge in Japan
Again, the studios are IP are dormant, but Playstation can do alot with them. Or anyone else that buys them, at least create huge hype for the platform/publsiher.


Sega: Yakuza and Judgement series ( the studio is pretty good and the series is more popular than ever ) Atlus is probably amonst the most talented studios in Japan with Persona, SMT, Disgaea and their other games, along with their rumoured new IP.
Total War could fit the PC market well for Sony, as well as Football Manager. Beyonetta is a great action game.
Plus they have games like PSO that can be another online game for them, Virtua Fighter will be another fighter as they have invested Evo Community.
Plus loads of IP, that die hard fans will always go towards. I

Nihon Falcon:
Small but they have 2 great JRPG IP. Legend of Heroes and Ys.


Western Pubslishers:

EA and Take2 will be too expensive.

Ubisoft has great smaller titles but the open world games arent as good as Playstation’s so I see no need To buy them. Playstation needs some different genres

Warner - The best option in my opinion: Lego is huge. Harry Potter. Mortal Kombat. DC games, plus more IP

Theres loads of good smaller western studios too, like Playdead for example.


———-

To me its about protecting the old IP. If Platforms weren’t just buying IP they had nothing to do with creating like Xbox has, then I wouldn’t care.

I liked how Sony and others worked with studios exclusively, built a relationship with them and then acquired them. But the landscape has changed.
They need to buy publishers/IP before the big boys like google, amazon, MS buys more And makes them exclusive to their platform Which we have recently seen.


Sony is gonna create loads of great new IP No doubt. But the older IP will also bring die hard fans to or away from their current platform.
Like I said, I wasn’t one for Sony buying IP/Publishers. They havent bought an IP they havent co-created since Wipeout but the indusry is changing….. plus I wanna carry on playing Persona and Yakuza on my Playstation like I have done since PS1/PS2 Lol
Sony has definitely no one which does develop Japanese games. So I would go with SQEX. Konami would be wonderful too, but I think they have no intention for selling their IPs. They're making a lot of. money just with their gambling/casino machines.

I don't know if you heard about it, Jeff Grubb teased a buyout of Square Enix by Sony. He said that two months ago and as I recall correctly Greg Miller confirmed that rumor too. Some context to those, who don't recognize them. Both were working as (real) gaming journalists and are know to be connected all over around the world. They literally don't miss with their leaks and rumors. For example Jeff was right with TLOU Remake and Kojima's game for Xbox. It's worth to mention that he talked about the Kojima game two years ago. So in my view he seems to be legit. He didn't want to confirm it for 100%, because he said he would fear legal steps against him. So I think there must be truth behind the rumor and now the question is not if, more like when it's going to happen?
Right now Sony has Bungie deal ongoing, so if SIE is the one to buy them, then it must be clearly after that ongoing acquisition. Possibility two would be, that Sony HQ (mother) will buy them, then they would not have to wait until Fall 2022. Because Sony themselves are a different company than Sony Interactive Entertainment. I am really looking forward to this!
 
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arvfab

Oldest Guard
23 Jun 2022
2,411
3,523
Square Enix is for me the smartest acquisition for Sony in general, not only PlayStation. With beloved franchises like FF, DQ, Nier etc. they have so much potential for movies, animes, series. And considering how many of them already have mobile entries, Sony can only win.