Krafton Acquires Neon Giant, Developer of The Ascent
It has been announced that PUBG: Battlegrounds developer Krafton has purchased The Ascent developer Neon Giant. In addition to PUBG Studios, Krafton is home to seven other development outfits such as Striking Distance Studios (makers of The Callisto Protocol) and Unknown Worlds Entertainment (makers of Subnautica). In 2021, Krafton began a streak of acquisitions that seems to continue continuing. The huge South Korean firm has recently acquired many other companies, the most recent being Neon Giant.
In 2018, a group of industry veterans who had previously worked on games like Bulletstorm, Wolfenstein, and Doom got together to form Neon Giant. The Swedish firm utilised funding from Amplifier Game Invest and a donation from Epic Games to create an Unreal Engine 4 game. Given the scope of the final product, the fact that The Ascent was created in under three years by a crew of eleven is remarkable. Despite ambiguous sales, Curve Digital, the game’s publisher, considers The Ascent’s release a success.
Friday’s earnings announcement for Krafton included confirmation of the transaction. No more information about the transaction has been made public at this time, therefore it is unknown how much Krafton paid or what percentage of the company was acquired. It seems weird that Neon Giant hasn’t even acknowledged the purchase. Maybe Neon Giant is just now immersed in producing something brand new.
Krafton has been forthcoming about what the Neon Giant crew is up to in terms of their future project. According to Krafton, Neon Giant is developing a first-person shooter set in an open environment. A radical departure from the company’s previous efforts, The Ascent is an isometric action role-playing game with more in common with Diablo than Far Cry. However, given the team’s background, maybe this was always the idea with Neon Giant.
Neon Giant’s next project may have warranted the purchase of Krafton because to the higher scale expected of the genre in question. It’s possible that Neon Giant looked for investment to expand its development staff and pay for continuous development, but the best offer it received was to be acquired by Krafton. With Krafton’s backing, Neon Giant should be able to create a game of whatever scale it desires.
It’s reasonable to wonder whether there may be unintended effects to Krafton’s purchase of Neon Giant. En Masse Entertainment, a publishing division of Krafton, and other mobile game production firms have all been shut down or disbanded during the previous decade. Obviously, the worst-case scenario is that Neon Giant sold the firm out of desperation. Neon Giant’s future will be revealed when its next game is revealed, so fans should remain patient.
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