On the heels of multiple financial news bursts, Nexon has decided to spend money on a studio once again. This time the cash splash arrives to Embark Studios, a games developer based in Stockholm, Sweden, that is working on ways to “blur the line between playing and making, with games and tools that empower everyone to create.” If Embark doesn’t sound familiar to you, it should: It’s led by former EA exec Patrick Söderlund, whose reputation (oh, say, with BioWare’s Anthem-related messes and prior to that the SWBF2 lockbox fiasco) rather precedes him in gaming circles.
The acquisition will come by way of controlling stake ownership, with Nexon raising its stake in Embark from 66.1% to 72.8%, followed by a purchase of the remaining shares over a five year period. The move is explained in the press release as a way for Nexon to strengthen the company’s global position and further invest in Western games development.
All of this gladhanding comes as a bit of a surprise, considering Nexon’s recent fortunes. Nexon’s stock dipped 5% in June when it decided to withdraw its buyout plans after nobody would rise to meet its selling price, followed shortly after by a rumor that the company would be merging its PC and mobile businesses together. Then, at the end of July, Nexon’s publishing contract with Riders of Icarus came to an end, leaving the MMORPG to work with Valofe Global to take over.
But hey, Embark Studios is working on AI to make spider robots chase avatars. So we’re sure things are just fine.