Netflix has acquired its first video game studio

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Image titled Netflix Acquires First Video Game Studio

Photo: Pascal Le Segretain / Staff (Getty Images)

Go ahead with his bizarre plans to expand into the video game space, Netflix would have acquired Night School Studio, an independent game developer who will mark the first acquisition of its kind for the streaming platform.

Night School Studio has a few hit games on its roster, including 2019’s Afterparty, which takes place in a college town in Hell, and 2016 Without beef, which, according to the studio’s website, is a “supernatural thriller about a group of friends who unwittingly opens a ghostly rift.” (Ring familiar?) In fact, the ties between Night School Studio and the original Netflix hit Stranger Things go Beyond the Superficial: The studio was working on a hybrid puzzle game based on the series in 2018 when unexpected layoffs forced the project to abruptly end.

In a declarationMike Verdu, vice president of game development at Netflix, said the platform’s initial game offerings will be completely free, with no ads or in-app purchase options, and will be “exclusive games designed for everyone. types of players and all levels. of game.

The announcement of the acquisition comes just a day after Netflix revealed that its first mobile game library, which debuted for Android users in Poland in August, will also be rolling out free to subscribers in Spain and Italy. While the games do not require any purchase to play, they do, oddly enough, require an external download, with potential users who find them in the Netflix mobile app being redirected at the Google Play Store to install the game on their devices.

Netflix has been reporting for months that it sees itself as a potential player in the gaming space, a move no doubt meant to help it amass an even bigger slice of the media pie it has so far dominated. with streaming content like TV shows and movies. .

In a statement on the Night School website, Sean Krankel, who founded the small studio in 2014, praised the Netflix team for showing “… the utmost care to protect our studio culture and our creative vision ”.

“Netflix provides film, television and now game makers with an unprecedented canvas to create and deliver great entertainment to millions of people,” Krankel said. “Our explorations into narrative gameplay and Netflix’s track record of supporting various storytellers were such a natural pairing.”


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