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GGP Gaming Weekly – Week 32

Highlights

EA reports strong June quarter with revenue up 21% to $1.46 billion (link)

  • The big game publisher released just two games during the quarter: Command & Conquer Remastered Collection, a remake of the real-time strategy series created by Westwood Studios in the 1990s; and Burnout Paradise Remastered. But EA’s development teams put out more than 30 content updates as part of the live services it provides for its existing games, the company said
  • The Sims 4 hits 30 million players with massive pandemic bump (link)
  • Tens of millions of new players dove into EA games during the pandemic (link)

15,000 games removed from Apple’s App Store in China ahead of registration deadline (link)

  • At the request of the Chinese government, Apple has removed nearly 15,000 games since July 1, with more likely to disappear when the August 1 requirement for registration arrives
  • Niko Partners analysts reviewed the top iOS games in China when the announcement was first made by Apple and found that 97 of the top 100 grossing games on the China App Store have legal ISBNs (International Standard Book Number). Foreign companies have to have a Chinese game publisher apply to get an ISBN from the Chinese National Press and Publication Administration. That process takes about 80 business days, according to publisher Cocos. The NPPA approves or denies games based on its censorship laws

Roblox expects to pay $250 million to its mostly young-adult developers this year (link)

  • The blocky and cartoon-style virtual world Roblox expects to pay $250 million to its mostly young-adult developers this year. The company made the announcement at RDC, its sixth annual developer conference
  • By sharing its proceeds with its developers, Roblox can grow its platform and move ahead on its big goals. CEO David Baszucki wants the company and its users to collectively build the Metaverse, the universe of virtual worlds that are all interconnected, like in novels such as Snow Crash and Ready Player One

At Pokémon Go Fest 2020, millions of players caught nearly a billion Pokémon (link)

  • Niantic announced that Pokémon Go Fest 2020 drew millions of players who caught nearly a billion Pokémon over the weekend.The annual fest took place on July 25 and July 26 as an online-only event, in contrast to prepandemic years, when it was held as a physical event in big parks in different regions

Ori dev Moon Studios signs deal with Take-Two’s Private Division (link)

  • Private Division, a publishing label under Take-Two Interactive, announced deals with three independent developers. This includes the studio behind the Ori series, Moon Studio
  • Along with Moon, Private Division will publish games from League of Geeks, best known for the digital board game Armello; and Roll7, responsible for Laser League
  • Take-Two started Private Division in 2017. The label focuses on smaller games, not triple-A fare. It has published hits such as Kerbal Space Program and The Outer Worlds

Tera: Battle Arena brings team-based action to the MMO’s universe (link)

  • En Masse Entertainment has announced Tera: Battle Arena, a team-based brawler that will be available for PC later this year as a new mode for the massively multiplayer online game
  • Tera launched back in 2011. It has stood out with its use of real-time combat, offering faster action that most other online role-playing games. Battle Arena is focusing solely on action, with players picking heroes and then fighting against each other in two teams of three players

Netflix’s The Witcher is getting a prequel TV show (link)

  • A prequel TV show for The Witcher is coming to coming to Netflix
  • Blood Origins will be a six-part limited series

M&A and Capital Raising

Esports firm Vindex to buy Belong brand from GAME for around $50 million (link)

  • According to the Financial Times, the deal is valued at around $50 million. The Belong brand was launched by GAME back in 2016, with these stores featuring esports arenas that consumers could go to in order to watch matches and take part in competitions

Huuuge Games acquires Finnish games studio Double Star (link)

  • Mobile games developer and publisher Huuuge Games has acquired Finnish games studio Double Star
  • The companies have already worked together having released casual RPG Bow Land. The deal has cemented Huuuge Games’ presence in Finland, with Double Star being based in Helsinki

Moss creator Polyarc raises $9 million to expand from VR to AR games (link)

  • Polyarc, creator of the virtual reality game Moss, has raised $9 million as it expands beyond VR to augmented reality games. The funding was led by Hiro Capital, with contributions from Vulcan Ventures and Galaxy Interactive via its Galaxy EOS VC Fund

Others

Cuphead launches on PS4 (link)

  • Cuphead has had a surprise release for PlayStation 4. While it was a surprise when Cuphead released for Switch, a PS4 port is even more irregular. PlayStation 4 is the direct competitor to Microsoft’s Xbox One. But Microsoft has been showing some flexibility in recent years

2K forms partnership with OneTeam Partners and the NFLPA (link)

  • American games publisher 2K has formed a partnership with OneTeam Partners and the National Football League Players Association (NFLPA)
  • The new deal secures the right for 2K to use names, numbers, images, and likenesses for more than 2,000 NFL stars. Currently, the company has multiple American football games in development, with them set to begin being released in 2021

Google adds 4G and 5G streaming to its Android Stadia app (link)

  • Google has added 4G and 5G capabilities to its Android Stadia app as part of a new “experiment” for the service
  • Previously, streaming games through the Stadia app could only be done through Wi-Fi connections. Now, however, players can opt-in to use their mobile data instead

Gaming Public Multiples

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