Anyone got about $4 billion dollars laying around?
In life, things come and go. It is probably one of the only true things that you can always count on. That’s true of the gaming industry, maybe just about more so than any other entertainment industry, and unfortunately it looks like it could very well be coming time for WB Interactive Entertainment to go.
According to a report from CNBC, apparently the parent company to the gaming division, AT&T, is looking to sell the division for somewhere around the sum of $4 billion USD. While there is seemingly no deal in place, there has allegedly been some interest from Take-Two Interactive Software, Electronic Arts and Activision Blizzard mentioned, though it seems that whatever interest is there is still in very early development.
While on paper the deal may sound good, it’s probably worth remembering that most of their titles have been based properties owned or licensed by Warner Bros., such as the Arkham and Injustice games from DC Comics or The Lord of the Ring series. They own very few original gaming IPs, with the most notable one being the Mortal Kombat franchise. There is, however, a lot of studios under their umbrella: TT Games, Rocksteady Studios, NetherRealm Studios, Monolith Productions, WB Games Boston, Avalanche Software, WB Games Montreal, and WB Games San Francisco.
Because of that it brings up a lot of questions about what would happen with all of those properties, and it’s mentioned that there could be some kind of licensing deal for whoever decides to make the purchase that would allow the purchaser to continue using the IPs while WB/AT&T still profited from it in some way. But that seems to be mostly speculation at this point.
WB Interactive Entertainment has largely been absent from the latter part of this console generation outside the Mortal Kombat titles. They have apparently seen a lot of cancellations, specifically from failed adaptations of DC Comics properties. Rumors have it that the company was planning a big E3 showing with multiple huge titles, though it was canceled due to COVID-19 concerns and that a digital conference of some kind will replace it later in the future. Whether all of this has impacted that in any significant way is unclear. At this point, we just have to wait and see what happens.