square enix embracer group life is strange

Square Enix to retain certain IPs after Embracer acquisition

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Not all ‘western’ IPs are headed to Sweden

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In the early hours of this morning, the big news hit that Swedish holding company Embracer Group has struck a deal to acquire Crystal Dynamics, Eidos Montreal, and Square Enix Montreal from Square Enix. While the deal represents the majority of Square’s western development and IP catalog, it should be noted that some brands’ publishing rights will remain with Square Enix.

As noted in Square Enix’s initial statement regarding the transaction, the studio will be handing over brands such as Tomb Raider, Legacy of Kain, Thief, and Deus Ex, but will retain certain franchises including the dramatic adventure series Life is Strange, explosive open-world shooter Just Cause, and sci-fi multiplayer title Outriders.

square enix embracer just cause

The Embracer Group acquisition is said to include 50 “back catalog” titles, so the fate of various other Square Enix IP — such as open-world crime drama Sleeping Dogs, and Marvel releases Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy — is still to be disclosed. Back in 2019, Square Enix returned the rights to the popular stealth series Hitman to its original studio, IO Interactive, suggesting that the Japanese publisher is currently offloading the majority of its “westernized” portfolio.

Once the deal completes this fall, Square Enix’s overseas development is expected to be a conjunctive effort between Square Enix Japan, Square Enix External Studios, and Square Enix Collective.

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Chris Moyse
Senior Editor - Chris has been playing video games since the 1980s and writing about them since the 1880s. Graduated from Galaxy High with honors. Twitter: @ChrisxMoyse