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Sony acquires Returnal developer Housemarque, teases another purchase

Sony announced that it acquired Housemarque, the Finnish developer of PlayStation hits such as Resogun, Alienation, and most recently, Returnal.

The two companies had been working closely with one another for over a decade, with most of Housemarque’s recent games launching exclusively for PlayStation consoles (or handhelds). In regards to the acquisition, Head of PlayStation Studios Hermen Hulst said “Housemarque’s recent release of Returnal proves the studio is one with incredible vision, capable of creating memorable new games that resonate with our community.”

“This addition enhances the creative force of PlayStation Studios, and I cannot wait to see what the future holds for Housemarque.”

The studio has been around since 1995 when developers Bloodhouse and Terramarque were combined to make Housemarque. Since then, the team has made a name for itself by creating fast-paced arcade shooters. Housemarque first gained popularity with Super Stardust HD for the PS3, the first game ever to include PlayStation trophies.

Returnal was a major departure for the studio, as it marked the first over-the-shoulder shooter in the team’s portfolio. Despite not being classified as an arcade shooter, much of the company’s roots and DNA can be found in Returnal. Now that the studio has Sony in its corner for good, it’s possible we’ll get a sequel to Returnal. Or perhaps something entirely new.

One thing to note about this news is that it might actually telegraph what’s to come for further acquisitions. As spotted by Twitter user Nibel, Sony Japan uploaded an image welcoming the team to the family, but the text was for Bluepoint Studios, not Housemarque. apparently PlayStation Japan uploaded the wrong image with their first tweet on Housemarque's acquisition, and it actually mentions a Bluepoint acquisition

— Nibel (@Nibellion) June 29, 2021

Bluepoint is yet another team that has worked closely with Sony over the years, so it would make sense for this to be the next big acquisition. Though, it might just be an error, so we’ll have to wait and see. Nonetheless, congrats to Sony and Housemarque for the newfound partnership.

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