Not even a month after closing Visceral Games, Electronic Arts made a surprise announcement today that they've purchased Titanfall developer Respawn Entertainment. Set up by Jason West and Vince Zampella after their high-profile firings from Activision, the independent studio has now been bought by EA for $151 million in cash, as well as up to $164 million in long-term equity over the next four years. If the studio meets future targets set by EA, they can also earn themselves up to $140 million in addition to the above, although some of these targets will last until the end of 2022.
Zampella went on to explain why they decided to team up with EA:
While it wasn’t necessary, going with EA made a lot of sense. With Titanfall and Star Wars, EA has been a great development partner that supports us and doesn’t interfere with our process for making games or studio culture. EA will provide us with more resources, access to new technologies, and expertise that we can tap into to that will help us make better games, and Respawn will retain the same creative freedom and culture we’ve always had. We’ve been talking closely with the leadership at EA and we share their values and vision for the future of being a developer-focused company that puts the players first.Meanwhile, EA's CEO Andrew Wilson had this to say:
We've seen firsthand the world-class caliber of Respawn as a development studio with incredible vision, deep talent and an inspiring creative mindset. Our longtime partnership is grounded in a shared desire to push the boundaries and deliver extraordinary and innovative new experiences for players around the world. Together, we've brought this to life in the Titanfall franchise, and now with the Respawn team joining EA, we have exciting plans to accomplish even more amazing things in the future.Zampella went on to clarify that he will still be in charge of the studio. There will also be no layoffs or "major organization changes" within the company. Finally, all of their current projects will continue unhindered. This includes their VR project for Oculus Rift, their upcoming Star Wars title that's currently planned for Fiscal Year 2019, and a previously unannounced third title in the Titanfall franchise.