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Arkane Studios acquired by Zenimax Media

Arkane Studios acquired by Zenimax Media

Dark Messiah developer Arkane has been acquired by Zenimax Media, owner of Bethesda.

Zenimax Media, the parent company behind Elder Scrolls developer Bethesda Game Studios, has announced at QuakeCon 2010 that it has fully acquired Arkane Studios.

Arkane is the second game studio that Zenimax has recently bought up, joining legendary Doom and Quake developer id Software.

Founded in 1999, Arkane Studios is led by Harvey Smith - one of the lead designers on the seminal Deus Ex. Past titles include FPS/RPG Arx Fatalis and the PC version of Dark Messiah of Might and Magic, as well as some work on BioShock 2.

Arkane is currently confirmed to be working on an unannounced project with the core Bethesda team.

“This is an exciting moment for Arkane. After 11 years of independent development, we couldn’t think of a better publishing partner,
” said Arkane founder Raphael Colantonio.

We share so many creative values. Joining the ZeniMax family will allow us to grow stronger while staying true to the games we love.

The announcement was made at QuakeCon 2010, an annual id Software event where Zenimax also announced some upcoming iPhone games using id's Rage engine.

Let us know your thoughts in the forums.

7 Comments

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AstralWanderer 13th August 2010, 13:07 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by
Seems like a good match given that both Arkane and Zenimax have a strong RPG heritage. Unfortunately the cost of RPGs seems to be taking a toll on many developers - a recent example being Radon Lab's (the developers of Drakensang) bankruptcy and subsequent acquisition by BigPoint.
WildThing 13th August 2010, 14:25 Quote
I want another Dark Messiah of Might and Magic...
sear 13th August 2010, 15:15 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by AstralWanderer
Quote:
Originally Posted by
Seems like a good match given that both Arkane and Zenimax have a strong RPG heritage. Unfortunately the cost of RPGs seems to be taking a toll on many developers - a recent example being Radon Lab's (the developers of Drakensang) bankruptcy and subsequent acquisition by BigPoint.
Bankruptcy is because making genuinely good RPGs is no longer profitable. Rising production values plus a genre whose games require a whole lot of unique content just isn't viable, even for many large developers, which is why you are seeing guys like BioWare and Bethesda do their best to switch over to action games instead of actual RPGs. It's a sad state of affairs, and at this point I'm quite inclined to blame the current generation of gamers rather than Evil Capitalists.
DragunovHUN 13th August 2010, 17:39 Quote
*Reinstalls Arx Fatalis*
AstralWanderer 13th August 2010, 18:31 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by sear
Bankruptcy is because making genuinely good RPGs is no longer profitable.
Mmm - I think the profit is there, look at recent releases like Dragon Age, The Witcher and Neverwinter Nights 2. However the upfront costs (due to the reasons you noted) and development time seem higher than in other fields - the original Neverwinter Nights took over 5 years at Bioware.
KayinBlack 14th August 2010, 07:55 Quote
As an independent developer working on my own RPG (Fatal Optimization) it's an absolutely ENORMOUS undertaking. Especially when you do all content creation yourself as well. I can well see why just developing an RPG bankrupts people. It's very difficult.
Krayzie_B.o.n.e. 16th August 2010, 03:15 Quote
The audience for Rpg's is shrinking.

FPS/RPG with real time combat is what's up. Stalker Shadow of Chernobyl sold 4 million copies on the PC with very little advertisement as it was a solid FPS with loads of exploration and RPG elements.

Turn base warfare only works for Pokemon and Final Fantasy
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