Following the merger of Vicarious Visions with Blizzard, the Chinese video game giant Tencent, known for titles such as League of Legends and Clash of clans – acquire a “majority stake” in Klei Entertainment.
If you are not familiar with this Canadian developer, it is the studio behind games like Don’t starve and mark of the ninja. Klei Entertainment founder Jaime ‘Bigfoot’ Cheng says Klei will retain “full autonomy of creativity and operations in all aspects of the studio, including projects, talent and more.”
In a frequently asked question on Klei’s website, Cheng explained that there would be no immediate future changes to “personnel, projects or other operations.” As for the rationale behind this decision, it will allow the studio to “not have to worry about finances,” do its “best creative work,” and navigate a changing industry.
“There are some boring accounting changes that we will have to adjust to. Other than that, I will continue to run the studio as before, with no changes in personnel, projects or other operations.
“Klei has been around for 15 years, and we have made many changes over the years to respond to a changing world. Steadily, my desire has been to allow people to do their best creative work, to learn and grow, to not have to worry about finances and to be able to enjoy their lives outside of the studio. This has not changed.
“This partnership helps us navigate a changing industry and helps us focus on what we do best: creating unique experiences that no one else can.”
According to a report by Niko Partners via GamesIndustry.biz, Tencent invested in 31 deals related to the games industry last year, a new record for the company. It was a “combination of acquisitions, mergers, major and minor holdings, and financing rounds.”
Some of these deals included a minor stake in PlatinumGames and a 20% stake in Japanese publisher Marvelous. With 2021 just beginning, who knows what else Tencent could acquire in the coming months.