EA Buying Titanfall Devs Respawn Entertainment

Steve Phelps
November 12, 2017

EA has announced plans today to acquire Respawn Entertainment for $151 million in cash and up to $164 million in long-term equity.

Right now Respawn is hard at work on a few different projects, a new Titanfall game, an unnamed VR combat project due for release in 2019 and a "third-person action adventure game set in the Star Wars universe". Given the reported commercial underperformance of Titanfall 2 previous year, despite widespread critical success, the buyout may have been necessary to ensure the continued survival of the studio. Respawn was founded in 2010 by ex-Call of Duty designers Vince Zampella and Jason Ward. Still, Respawn are a very talented bunch of developers, and if they can push against EA' practices as much as they can, they could come out of this okay.

EA has a new studio under its umbrella. News of the Respawn Star Wars video game comes on the heels of a recent announcement by EA that it had canceled an in-development high-profile game from its Visceral studios. In a blog post concerning the deal on the Respawn website, Zampella says that the studio is joining EA to better compete in the future with access to more resources, new technologies, and more. "We've been talking closely with the leadership at EA and we share their values and vision for the future of being a developer-focused company that puts the players first".

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While it wasn't necessary, going with EA made a lot of sense. EA recently shuttered Dead Space developer Visceral Games (formerly known as EA Redwood Shores) and is now in the process of reworking the game from being an action-adventure single-player title to something akin to DICE's Battlefront series, with a potential multiplayer component and microtransactions to profit from. "This is a great next step for Respawn, EA, and our players", Respawn CEO Vince Zampella said.

The terms of the acquisition state that Respawn will now be a part of the EA Worldwide Studios division, alongside outfits like Motive Studios and Ghost Games.

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