Krafton Krafton Krafton. This massive Korean games company has been a whirlwind of confusion over the last couple of years as it’s smooshed around its holdings and substudios and companies. Let’s try to sort it out, shall we?
Here’s what we think we know: The company actually began life as Bluehole back in 2008 and became notable for the MMORPG TERA, which eventually released in the west through En Masse Entertainment, which Bluehole then acquired, along with several other studios, including Ginno Games’ and its notable title: PUBG. In fact, it then renamed Ginno as PUBG Corp. Then it created Krafton as an umbrella group for its growing base of acquisitions, later swapping the corportate structure around, making Krafton the overarching corporation and Bluehole one of its under-studios.
This year, of course, Krafton began consolidating its holdings; it’s most obvious to MMO players through the dissolution of En Masse and the pullback of TERA publishing in multiple regions. The company also designated Bluehole to hold its MMOs (Elyon, not just TERA), and as of October it counted PUBG Corp, Bluehole, Striking Distance Studios, PNIX, and Delusion Studio as its major assets.
Now it’s December, and Krafton has pushed the PUBG Corp changeover along: It’s finished “merging” PUBG Corp. back into Krafton, but also not really, as it’s now listed as part of Krafton’s “independent studio system.” PNIX and Delusion have also merged together as RisingWings under the same system. I told you this was confusing.
“Today, KRAFTON, Inc., responsible for entertainment properties such as PLAYERUNKNOWN’S BATTLEGROUNDS (PUBG) and TERA, announced that its subsidiary PUBG Corporation has fully merged into KRAFTON under its independent studio system. The company will now focus strictly on development under its new name PUBG Studio. The news follows a previous announcement detailing the fact that PUBG Corporation’s publishing and support teams have integrated into KRAFTON. […] KRAFTON’s independent studio system seeks to empower its development teams with the autonomy to build their own unique identities and pursue their own creative visions. The system now includes four total studios including PUBG Studio, Striking Distance Studios, Bluehole Studio, and RisingWings. PUBG Studio will continue to provide global support for PUBG and PUBG MOBILE (in select countries). The studio will continue to seek ways to develop and expand the PUBG IP in various fields, including its esports and entertainment business.”
The press release includes a note about Bluehole as well, reiterating the Korean release of Elyon later this month: “Bluehole is committed to upholding its founding principles of creating and servicing premier MMORPGs, including TERA and its upcoming game ELYON, which is set to release on December 10 in South Korea.”