Sony recently announced the acquisition of Finnish studio Housemarque, and of course, with games such as Returnal, Nex Machina, Resogun, and more, the developer has long been a partner of PlayStation. The acquisition definitely made sense, and that long partnership definitely was a factor in why PlayStation chose to go ahead with the deal– but as you’d expect, they weren’t the only ones who were interested in picking up the studio.
In an interview with Yle, Housemarque CEO Ilari Kuittinen said that other “major players” were also interested in acquiring the studio. Who were these “big players” exactly? Kuittinen didn’t mention their names, but called them the “usual suspects.”
He said: “Usual suspects- major players in the sector from China, Sweden, and the US. I have to say that we have had a very special Spring, and the fact that we were even being competed for feels a little surreal.”
Of course, it’s easy to connect the dots there, with China’s Tencent, Sweden’s Embracer Group, and (presumably) the US’ Microsoft all having been very trigger happy with acquisitions of late- it’s likely that they were all interested in nabbing Housemarque as well.
Meanwhile, Kuittinen also went on to say that to begin with, discussions with Sony made it clear that they were acquiring Housemarque so that they could keep doing the unique things they generally do, rather than being made to follow a template defined by Sony.
“It was clear from our discussions that Sony wanted to buy us because we were doing something that other people weren’t doing,” he said. “Their starting point wasn’t that we would start making games according to a formula defined by Sony.”
As for for the studio’s next game will be, while it’s going to be a while before we find out, they have said that they want it to be even bigger than Returnal. Read more on that through here.