Tencent and Sony Invest Significantly in Elden Ring Maker Software
The agreement provides the Dark Souls and Bloodborne developer with a large sum of money to pursue future projects.
Elden Ring was a hit with more than just fans of FromSoftware’s notoriously difficult action-RPGs. Tencent Holdings and Sony announced today that they have acquired 30% of the Souls-series developer’s shares, split in Tencent’s favour. The agreement is expected to net FromSoftware $260 million.
Sony and Tencent are acquiring 14.09% and 16.25% of FromSoft, respectively, according to an announcement made today by FromSoft’s parent company Kadokawa. According to the statement, Kadokawa wants FromSoftware to be able to expand its development efforts; the “enhancement of capabilities for the creation, development, and deployment of [FromSoft] game IP is one of the [Kadokawa] Group’s highest priorities.”
One of the goals is to provide FromSoft with the resources necessary to develop Elden Ring into a franchise that extends beyond video games.
Elden Ring was a long time coming, built on the foundation laid down by FromSoftware’s groundbreaking PS3 game Demon’s Souls in 2009. The Dark Souls trilogy, as well as two other titles of a similar nature (Bloodborne and Sekiro), certainly broadened the audience for these difficult and cryptic action-RPGs. None, however, have achieved critical mass quite like Elden Ring, which outsold household names like Call of Duty and spawned viral streaming sensations and hype that refuses to die.
Tencent, a Shanghai-based conglomerate, has maintained its investment and acquisition spree. It owns 5% of Ubisoft, the publisher of Assassin’s Creed and Far Cry, completed an acquisition of League of Legends developer Riot Games, owns 40% of Epic Games, and has stakes in many, many, many other game companies. According to Polygon, it also owns 5% of Activision Blizzard, which will be transferred to Microsoft if that megacorp’s notable bid to acquire the Call of Duty publisher passes regulatory scrutiny.
Sony has also been on a spending spree, though it appears to be more modest in comparison to Tencent. Perhaps most notably, Sony paid $3.6 billion in January for the once-Microsoft-affiliated Bungie. The PlayStation company also made a move to acquire Bluepoint, a studio known for critically acclaimed remakes. Sony also made a billion-dollar investment in Epic Games in April.
Anyway, perhaps FromSoft can use the new funds to add an easy mode, allowing me to finally finish the damn things.