Chinese media company NetEase has announced they’ve acquiring a minority stake in French developer Quantic Dream.
This means the developer will no longer produce video games exclusively for PlayStation. The studio had begun to make their titles exclusive to PlayStation consoles in 2010, with Heavy Rain, Beyond: Two Souls, and Detroit: Become Human.
Now, Chinese publisher NetEase has invested enough into Quantic Dream for a “minority stake”. The publisher had previously invested $100 million into Bungie for a new franchise.
NetEase also handles Chinese versions of several Blizzard Entertainment, including Overwatch, World of Warcraft, and Starcraft II. They were also involved with the development of Diablo Immortal.
Quantic Dream’s David Cage (Chief Executive Officer, Creative Director) spoke to Variety, explaining that he is still the primary shareholder, and that Guillaume de Fondaumière (Co-Chief Executive Officer) will continue to manage the studio. He also reiterated not too much will change at the studio:
“There will be no changes with the governance of the company, as the objective of NetEase is to engage in a meaningful partnership with us. [investment will be used to support the company’s] vision of becoming a global, multi-franchise entertainment company, and to develop advanced technologies and games for the future.”
He continued, stating the company will create new IP with a variety of publishers. In addition they will develop an in-house game engine, along with new performance capture studios.
Cage later elaborated on how NetEase was aiding the company. “We want to leverage the strengths of the studio and move up in the value chain while remaining independent, but also develop synergies that will make both Quantic and NetEase stronger.”
While discussing if new games would come to mobile, Cage focused more on how all platforms would be seeing more of their work.
“Our objective is to be present on all platforms where there is an audience that can enjoy our experiences. We will, of course, continue developing on PlayStation, a platform that we know very well after having worked with Sony for 12 years, but we will also be present on all other relevant platforms.”
Finally, Cage spoke to Venture Beat, and explained how important it was to choose the right studio to work with.
“We were not interested in just getting funding. A studio’s future is shaped by vision, the means to realize it, but also about finding partners with whom you can create synergies in order to build something together, while remaining independent in your decisions.
We talked to many people interested in partnering with us, but we found we were attracted by NetEase’s strategy. We looked at their investments in Bungie or Second Dinner that felt very relevant, we shared thoughts about the respective visions of our companies, and we realized that we had a lot in common. Also importantly, we felt their genuine enthusiasm and passion, which is also extremely important for us.”
We suspect NetEase may at least be partially responsible for the next title Quantic Dream announces. We will keep you updated as we learn more.