PlayStation Studios Head Teases New PC/GaaS Investments, Possible Transmedia Collaboration with FromSoftware

Alessio Palumbo
Live Service PlayStation Studios

PlayStation Studios head Hermen Hulst shared a couple of brief but very interesting statements to Reuters this morning. Hulst, who stepped into his current role at PlayStation Studios in November 2019 after co-founding and leading Guerrilla Games for nearly twenty years, confirmed that additional investments that would strengthen PlayStation's expansion into areas like PC, mobile, and game as a service (GaaS) are definitely possible.

Further investments in areas that will strengthen the expansion on to PC, on to mobile, and into live services, that's definitely a possibility for us.

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PlayStation Studios already got bigger over the last couple of years thanks to the acquisitions of Housemarque, Firesprite, Valkyrie Entertainment, Bluepoint Games, Nixxes Software, Haven Studios, and Savage Game Studios. Of course, that doesn't count the biggest investment made by Sony with the $3.6 billion acquisition of Bungie since the Destiny company will remain an independent entity rather than getting absorbed into Sony's existing first-party structure.

Even so, Sony Interactive Entertainment president and CEO Jim Ryan had already signaled that the company's M&A push was far from over. 

In terms of future M&A activity, the answer to that is we are not at all finished with our strategy of trying to grow PlayStation Studios inorganically.

As we transition from our historic game development strategy to a much broader and much wider market reach than we enjoy today, it is very likely that inorganic stimulus will be required to help us to realise these dreams.

And to the extent that potential targets fit with our strategy, to the extent that potential targets allow us to accelerate the way in which we are able to deliver on our strategy, we will certainly consider further M&A activity to add to our business portfolio.

Indeed, a little over a month ago, Sony acquired a 14.1% stake in FromSoftware (while Tencent secured another 16.3%). Speaking about that investment in the Reuters interview, PlayStation Studios head Hermen Hulst teased not just game development partnerships but transmedia opportunities, too.

You should think of collaborations on the game development side first and foremost, but it's also not unthinkable with our PlayStation Productions efforts that we explore opportunities.

PlayStation Productions is Sony's branch dedicated to bringing game IPs to the small and/or big screen. It is a big pillar of the overall strategy, as the upcoming adaptations also influence remakes and remasters. Needless to say, Bloodborne fans would love to get a remaster and PC port of the first game ahead of a TV/movie adaptation and a game sequel. Only time will tell, though.

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