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Tencent Acquires Warframe & Gears Tactics Developers

Tencent has acquired Leyou Technologies for a whopping US$1.5 billion deal. It was signed-off by Leyou shareholders on 11 December 2020 and finalised today.

Weirdly enough, Leyou Technologies was previously a chicken processing company. It only started to enter the world of videogames by acquiring a majority stake in Warframe developer Digital Extremes in 2014.

In 2016, Leyou then acquired Gears Tactics developer Splash Damage and a 20 percent stake in developer Certain Affinity, who recently worked on Call Of Duty Modern Warfare Remastered and Halo Infinite.

Last but not least, Leyou most recently formed Athlon Games, who are currently working with Amazon on The Lord of the Rings MMO.

Now that Tencent has purchased Leyou, the Chinese giant now owns all of the above. This adds to the company’s already impressive list of developers that they own, including Riot Games, Funcom, 50 percent of Epic Games, and stakes in major companies like Activision Blizzard, Ubisoft, Paradox Interactive and more.

In an official blog post, Splash Damage co-founder and CEO Richard Jolly said:

“We’ve always been dedicated to creating team-based games that spark friendships and build passionate communities, and we strive to work with partners who believe in that mission.

In our many discussions with Tencent, it became clear that they not only believe in that mission but will do everything they can to enable and empower us to realise it.

This is going to be a bold new phase for our studio, with an amazing line-up of ambitious games that deliver on what Splash Damage is all about.

We couldn’t be more excited.”

Meanwhile, Warframe developer Digital Extremes also reassures their independence in a blog post:

“Yes, we will continue to create great content for Warframe and we will remain creatively independent.

Our focus will remain on listening to you, our community, upgrading Warframe based on your feedback, and developing the kind of great stories, gameplay, and incredible new space ninja action you’ve come to expect from us.

Tencent is well known for respecting the creative decisions and integrity of its studios, and for giving them the autonomy and independence to experiment, innovate and thrive.”

It looks like Tencent is becoming the Disney of the games industry fast.

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