Massive Chinese super company Tencent is buying Turtle Rock Studios, the developer of Back 4 Blood and Left 4 Dead. The tech giant already owns League of Legends developer Riot Games, Supercell, and Funcom, and has stakes in Epic Games, Activision Blizzard, and Ubisoft.
Tencent and Turtle Rock announced the acquisition yesterday. It announced that the video game developer will become part of Tencent,
“while retaining its independent operations […] and its existing team will continue to run all studio operations, led by co-founders Phil Robb and Chris Ashton.”
Acording to Tencent, the acquisition will have no impact on Back 4 Blood at all. Fingers Crossed
So then, are we to believe that Turtle Rock’s acquisition by Tencent “will have no effect on Back 4 Blood,” the Left 4 Dead spiritual sequel that launched in October? TIme will tell.
Turtle Rock is just the latest in a now sprawling list of gaming investments that Tencent has made outside of China. Just this year, Tencent has acquired or made majority investments in:
– Don’t Starve and Griftlands developer Klei Entertainment;
– Spec Ops: The Line and The Cycle developer Yager;
– Sumo Group, home to Sumo Digital, developer of Sackboy: A Big Adventure and Hood: Outlaws and Legends;
– Warhammer: Vermintide developer Fatshark;
– Wake Up Interactive, parent company of Ninjala developer Soleil and Devil’s Third developer Valhalla Game Studios.
Tencent has also invested smaller amounts in Dontnod Entertainment, Bohemia Interactive, Remedy Entertainment, Bloober Team, FromSoftware (yikes) and Spike Chunsoft parent company Kadokawa this year.
Investing Over the Wall
According to analyst Daniel Ahmad at Niko Partners, Tencent invested in more than 100 video game-related companies in 2021. Acording to Ahmad, nearly a third of those deals were made with companies outside of China, which you can see in his tweet below.
A report from Niko Partners says that Tencent is facing increasing competition from other tech companies. The report sates the mega-corporation also hopes to capitalise on big hits from smaller game studios.
This portfolio diversification outside of China will of course help Tencent avoid the scrutiny and sanctions of the Chinese authorities. There have been a number of increasingly restrictive regulations in Tencents home country of late. The most recent of which restricts the time minors can spend playing games online. This directly impacts Tencent in games such as their mobile success on Honor of Kings.
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