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Forums - Sony Discussion - Sony acquires FireSprite Studios

Dulfite said:

I feel like Sony has been making these kinds of purchases (studios already working with them almost/entirely exclusively) as more of a prevention of Microsoft buying them up. It's a weird opposite: When Microsoft purchases a studio, it feels like it is expanding with additional exclusive content, whereas when Sony purchases a studio nothing really changes as these studios already were focused on making Sony exclusives. I'm not criticizing anything, just pointing out that Sony is more on the defense from my perspective. Why else would Sony buy up a studio that was already making exclusives for them if not to prevent someone from buying them up that would prevent their games from being on PlayStation? Microsoft is really the only major threat there. I doubt Sony would care if a third party company had bought out Insomniac, Firesprite, or any other studio they've obtained in recent years because then they could still arrange for those studios to make exclusive games for them. The only one that is threatening the status quo is Microsoft, so Sony seems to be on the defense by locking down these pseudo-independent studios and making them first party studios. Obviously my view is based on more of a general view of their purchases and not all-encompassing.

For context about this studio, here are games they made:

The Playroom2013PlayStation 4 with PlayStation Camera
Run Sackboy! Run!2014PlayStation Vita, Android, iOS
The Playroom VR2016PlayStation 4 with PlayStation VR
Air Force Special Ops: Nightfall2017PlayStation 4 with PlayStation VR
The Persistence VR2018PlayStation 4 with PlayStation VR
The Persistence2020PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Microsoft Windows

Game we know they are working on:

Theaters of War game mode for Star Citizen (a game that will no doubt release for the PS10, XboxOneTwoThree, and SViwtch.

Buying "2nd parties" is precisely why Sony's acquisitions aren't frowned upon. The harm done to non Playstation consumers is minimal. Sony get the benefit of expanding and future proofing some of their IP's without concerns over the availability of the developers associated with these IP's.

Insomniac's purchase in particular was a smart move to keep Spider-Man locked to their platforms for the time being, as Marvel wouldn't want to soon risk leaving the only developers to have ever made a hugely successful Spider-Man game.

Funding 2nd parties and helping them make a name for themselves does come at the risk of having a 3rd party purchase or "rent" them for their own projects later on. Acquiring studios gives them more control, and eliminates a number of potential problems (including but not limited to Microsoft buying them).



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Kyuu said:
Dulfite said:

I feel like Sony has been making these kinds of purchases (studios already working with them almost/entirely exclusively) as more of a prevention of Microsoft buying them up. It's a weird opposite: When Microsoft purchases a studio, it feels like it is expanding with additional exclusive content, whereas when Sony purchases a studio nothing really changes as these studios already were focused on making Sony exclusives. I'm not criticizing anything, just pointing out that Sony is more on the defense from my perspective. Why else would Sony buy up a studio that was already making exclusives for them if not to prevent someone from buying them up that would prevent their games from being on PlayStation? Microsoft is really the only major threat there. I doubt Sony would care if a third party company had bought out Insomniac, Firesprite, or any other studio they've obtained in recent years because then they could still arrange for those studios to make exclusive games for them. The only one that is threatening the status quo is Microsoft, so Sony seems to be on the defense by locking down these pseudo-independent studios and making them first party studios. Obviously my view is based on more of a general view of their purchases and not all-encompassing.

For context about this studio, here are games they made:

The Playroom2013PlayStation 4 with PlayStation Camera
Run Sackboy! Run!2014PlayStation Vita, Android, iOS
The Playroom VR2016PlayStation 4 with PlayStation VR
Air Force Special Ops: Nightfall2017PlayStation 4 with PlayStation VR
The Persistence VR2018PlayStation 4 with PlayStation VR
The Persistence2020PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Microsoft Windows

Game we know they are working on:

Theaters of War game mode for Star Citizen (a game that will no doubt release for the PS10, XboxOneTwoThree, and SViwtch.

Buying "2nd parties" is precisely why Sony's acquisitions aren't frowned upon. The harm done to non Playstation consumers is minimal. Sony get the benefit of expanding and future proofing some of their IP's without concerns over the availability of the developers associated with these IP's.

Insomniac's purchase in particular was a smart move to keep Spider-Man locked to their platforms for the time being, as Marvel wouldn't want to soon risk leaving the only developers to have ever made a hugely successful Spider-Man game.

Funding 2nd parties and helping them make a name for themselves does come at the risk of having a 3rd party purchase or "rent" them for their own projects later on. Acquiring studios gives them more control, and eliminates a number of potential problems (including but not limited to Microsoft buying them).

Makes sense for them to do it. Definetly a preventitive move. I just doubt Sony would be buying some of the studios they have bought had Microsoft not gone on a spending spree. Some of them they would have bought either way, I suspect, but others were dependent on this climate we find ourselves in I think.



hinch said:
Dulfite said:

I feel like Sony has been making these kinds of purchases (studios already working with them almost/entirely exclusively) as more of a prevention of Microsoft buying them up. It's a weird opposite: When Microsoft purchases a studio, it feels like it is expanding with additional exclusive content, whereas when Sony purchases a studio nothing really changes as these studios already were focused on making Sony exclusives. I'm not criticizing anything, just pointing out that Sony is more on the defense from my perspective. Why else would Sony buy up a studio that was already making exclusives for them if not to prevent someone from buying them up that would prevent their games from being on PlayStation? Microsoft is really the only major threat there. I doubt Sony would care if a third party company had bought out Insomniac, Firesprite, or any other studio they've obtained in recent years because then they could still arrange for those studios to make exclusive games for them. The only one that is threatening the status quo is Microsoft, so Sony seems to be on the defense by locking down these pseudo-independent studios and making them first party studios. Obviously my view is based on more of a general view of their purchases and not all-encompassing.

For context about this studio, here are games they made:

The Playroom 2013 PlayStation 4 with PlayStation Camera
Run Sackboy! Run! 2014 PlayStation Vita, Android, iOS
The Playroom VR 2016 PlayStation 4 with PlayStation VR
Air Force Special Ops: Nightfall 2017 PlayStation 4 with PlayStation VR
The Persistence VR 2018 PlayStation 4 with PlayStation VR
The Persistence 2020 PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, Microsoft Windows

Game we know they are working on:

Theaters of War game mode for Star Citizen (a game that will no doubt release for the PS10, XboxOneTwoThree, and SViwtch.

Nah, this isn't it. The now defunct Liverpool team (previously Psygnosis) was closed down and a lot of the members of that moved and created this FireSprite.

Sony acquires studios that they know well and worked with and with 250 people in this one this is a pretty big buy. Also adding to that they're pushing VR with PSVR 2 (soon) so they're going to need a big studio or two pumping out games for it. 

So you don't think Sony being concerned about MS buying this studio up, whom they have worked with over the years on PS exclusives, is a factor? If anything their importance to PSVR that you mentioned highlights more of a reason on Sony's part to prevent these types of studios from being bought out by MS. And sure, they've not made xbox games before, but if MS likes the quality of their games and they are willing to spend billions of $ on obtaining studios, why wouldn't they want to add a quality candidate that happens to have a history of working with, primarily, Sony? 



Not going to argue with what ifs (way too hot where I am). But just going to disagree to this, they've been wanting to expand moving into the new generation and make more content and they've been saying this since 2019 - https://www.mcvuk.com/business-news/sony-boss-jim-ryan-says-the-company-is-considering-studio-mergers-and-acquisitions/. And thus far, the studio's they've bought have a close working relationship with Sony. Whether its to shut off the competition is up in the air. A move like MS acquiring Bethesda is a totally different beast where they own a significant amount of successful IP's that are quite frankly massive and is an obvious power move. Whereas this is different type of acquisition altogether.


OT: hoping to see a new Wipeout and some new IP's from these guys.



Dulfite said:

I feel like Sony has been making these kinds of purchases (studios already working with them almost/entirely exclusively) as more of a prevention of Microsoft buying them up. It's a weird opposite: When Microsoft purchases a studio, it feels like it is expanding with additional exclusive content, whereas when Sony purchases a studio nothing really changes as these studios already were focused on making Sony exclusives. I'm not criticizing anything, just pointing out that Sony is more on the defense from my perspective. Why else would Sony buy up a studio that was already making exclusives for them if not to prevent someone from buying them up that would prevent their games from being on PlayStation? Microsoft is really the only major threat there. I doubt Sony would care if a third party company had bought out Insomniac, Firesprite, or any other studio they've obtained in recent years because then they could still arrange for those studios to make exclusive games for them. The only one that is threatening the status quo is Microsoft, so Sony seems to be on the defense by locking down these pseudo-independent studios and making them first party studios. Obviously my view is based on more of a general view of their purchases and not all-encompassing.

For context about this studio, here are games they made:

Game we know they are working on:

Theaters of War game mode for Star Citizen (a game that will no doubt release for the PS10, XboxOneTwoThree, and SViwtch.

I don't think it's accurate to say it's defensive against Microsoft. Undead Labs, and Playground games were very similar acquisitions to this FireSprite one. Third party studios that had a very close relationship to them. I don't think you would have said those were because Microsoft was defending against Sony making acquisitions.

There are a lot of benefits to these kinds of acquisitions. The studio gets more job security. The parent company gets more control over the operations, they can more reliably invest money into the studio, expanding and hiring as they see fit.

I don't think MS is a threat to Sony with their acquisitions. The only really "threatening" acquisition they've made was Zenimax. And that makes a lot of sense with their current business strategy. Zenimax makes a lot of games that players put hundreds of hours into, which is a very strong quality for a Game Pass like service.

FireSprite doesn't match the profile of any studio that MS has bought. They're a really big studio that has been working with Sony for the past decade, that has been making VR titles. They don't have any big IPs like Zenimax/Mojang.

It makes no real sense to consider FireSprite's acquisition as a preventative from MS buying them.  

A lot of other companies have been far more aggressive with acquisitions. The Embracer Group has been buying up studios left and right, averaging close to 20 studios a year. Tencent has been spending more money than MS on expanding. There has been quite a bit of acquisition going on, in the entire industry. Facebook even picked up one of Sony's close partners (Ready At Dawn).  

> because then they could still arrange for those studios to make exclusive games for them

This isn't true. Ready At Dawn is going to be developing exclusively for the Quest VR headsets now. Other third parties are going to be asking for more money because they would have to lose out on publishing on other platforms. So there is quite a bit of incentive to prevent other third parties. 

There might be some truth to the claim that it's defensive against the industry as a whole.



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Dulfite said:

I feel like Sony has been making these kinds of purchases (studios already working with them almost/entirely exclusively) as more of a prevention of Microsoft buying them up. It's a weird opposite: When Microsoft purchases a studio, it feels like it is expanding with additional exclusive content, whereas when Sony purchases a studio nothing really changes as these studios already were focused on making Sony exclusives. I'm not criticizing anything, just pointing out that Sony is more on the defense from my perspective. Why else would Sony buy up a studio that was already making exclusives for them if not to prevent someone from buying them up that would prevent their games from being on PlayStation? Microsoft is really the only major threat there. I doubt Sony would care if a third party company had bought out Insomniac, Firesprite, or any other studio they've obtained in recent years because then they could still arrange for those studios to make exclusive games for them. The only one that is threatening the status quo is Microsoft, so Sony seems to be on the defense by locking down these pseudo-independent studios and making them first party studios. Obviously my view is based on more of a general view of their purchases and not all-encompassing.

It's always a possibility, but I don't really see it since purchasing studios they work with first is what they've been doing for the last 2 decades. 

I guess it makes more sense for Sony to do this than to build studios from scratch. 



Know nothing about this company. Interested to see what they’ll make



Wonder what the mood is for some of the developers. They came from Sony Liverpool, got sacked, found a new workplace and now Sony is back ruling over them...



drkohler said:

Wonder what the mood is for some of the developers. They came from Sony Liverpool, got sacked, found a new workplace and now Sony is back ruling over them...

It's funny from that sense, that a lot of these developers were from Liverpool.

But I don't think they have a bad feeling about Sony, because they didn't really stop working with them. They helped develop Playroom, Playroom VR with Sony, following the closure.  And they also had The Persistence, which started out as a PSVR exclusive.



And Sony still hasn't officially announced the Bluepoint Acquisition...



http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F1gWECYYOSo

Please Watch/Share this video so it gets shown in Hollywood.