Netflix materializes its video game strategy with a first studio acquisition

While Amazon has just released its first major video game production, a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) called New World, Netflix announces the acquisition of its first development studio, the Californian Night School Studio. It is at the origin of Oxenfree, a narrative adventure game released for PC, Mac, consoles and smartphones in 2016, which has sold more than a million copies.

A range of games in 2022

“We are at the beginning of creating an incredible gaming experience for our members around the world. Night School Studio’s dedication to artistic excellence and their history makes them an invaluable partner in implementing the game. We share our ways. creatives and building a lineup of games for Netflix, ”said Mike Verdu, director of games for Netflix.

Because yes, Netflix has a video game division. Mike Verdu was recruited this summer, after a career at Facebook (Oculus), EA Mobile, and Zynga. The streaming platform announced at the beginning of the year its willingness to embark on this activity. After a first foray in the form of a license, with a free mobile game inspired by its home series Stranger Things launched in 2017, Netflix is ​​determined to offer games on its platform from 2022, in the continuity of its entertainment services, accessible. through your standard subscription. Games without ads or microtransactions, said Mike Verdu.

The battle for cloud gaming

Netflix’s strategy is not surprising, since the head of the platform said already in 2019 that it competes not with HBO, but with Fortnite for the time available to the brain. Also, all the tech giants have tried it with varying degrees of success (see Google Stadia setbacks) in video games.

In addition, the sector could see a small revolution thanks to cloud gaming, and as such, streaming platforms are well positioned to gain market share. Disney has been in the video game industry for a long time (but not in distribution), and Amazon Prime already offers a PC game service, included in the subscription in the United States. Amazon also launched a cloud gaming platform in 2020, Luna, which is still in the experimentation phase.

While waiting to deploy its games on a large scale, Netflix has launched mobile games in some European countries (Spain, Italy, Poland), accessible in the Netflix application on Android systems.

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