Jan 31, 2022 - Technology

Sony to buy Bungie for $3.6 billion

Destiny 2: The Witch Queen, courtesy of Bungie

Sony Interactive Entertainment announced today that it plans to acquire Halo and Destiny creator Bungie in a deal worth $3.6 billion.

Why it matters: The deal is the latest in an ongoing string of major acquisitions this year that will reshape the video game industry.

Driving the news: In a statement from Bungie, CEO Pete Parsons said that Bungie will "continue to independently publish and creatively develop our games."

  • The "most immediate change" is a push in hiring for Destiny 2 and "all new worlds beyond."
  • Parsons' statement says Destiny 2 will remain a multi-platform game with cross-play; the company also said that the deal will not impact the quality of the game on PlayStation platforms, or add PlayStation exclusives to the upcoming expansion Destiny 2: The Witch Queen.

Between the lines: Bungie was formerly a Microsoft acquisition, and the Halo series was a driving force for the original Xbox, thanks to the games' platform exclusivity.

  • It wasn't until 2007 that Bungie became an independent studio again.
  • In 2010, Bungie entered into a publishing agreement with Activision, which ended in 2019.

What they're saying: "In SIE, we have found a partner who unconditionally supports us in all we are and who wants to accelerate our vision to create generation-spanning entertainment, all while preserving the creative independence that beats in Bungie’s heart," Parsons said.

  • "We've had a strong partnership with Bungie since the inception of the Destiny franchise, and I couldn't be more thrilled to officially welcome the studio to the PlayStation family," SIE president and CEO Jim Ryan told GamesIndustry.

The big picture: The game industry is rapidly heading toward consolidation among some of its biggest players, as this year had already seen two of the biggest acquisitions in games ever.

  • On Jan. 18, Microsoft announced plans to buy embattled developer Activision Blizzard for a staggering $68.7 billion in cash in Microsoft's largest acquisition ever.
  • Shortly before that, on Jan. 10, Grand Theft Auto publisher Take-Two revealed plans to buy Zynga for $12.7 billion.

As noted by Axios' Kia Kokalitcheva, "Convergence is at the center of this consolidation — hardware and software, mobile and PC, social networks and content."

Go deeper