Beamdog, the Canadian studio and publisher responsible for modern ports of Baldur’s Gate games, will be acquired by Aspyr Media, the latter announced. Aspyr is a Texas-based developer and publisher primarily focused on ports, but part of the rapidly growing Embracer Group. The latter has made 62 crazy acquisitions since the start of 2020, worth around $8.1 billion, according to the report. Financial Times.
It’s a real subsidiary salad there. Aspyr is a subsidiary of Saber Interactive, which is a subsidiary of the giant Embracer Group, which has 10 direct subsidiaries (not counting subsidiary subsidiaries!). These include Gearbox, Koch Media, THQ Nordic and Dark Horse Media. Suffice to say, Beamdog will soon be owned by a very, very large company with a market valuation of $9.9 billion.
The acquisition is still subject to regulatory approval, but when the process is finalized, Beamdog will operate as an “independent studio” within Aspyr. Aspyr will publish the next release of Beamdog MythForce when it launches into early access next week, but it looks like Beamdog could be tasked with more legacy projects as well. In his statement, Aspyr CEO Ted Staloch said, “We look forward to seeing them realize their ambition with MythForce, maximizing the long-term potential of an incredible archive of classic games.”
Beamdog has the experience, having released modern and enhanced editions of two Baldur’s Gate games, Planescape: Torment, Neverwinter Nights, and more. This experience is reinforced by the fact that BioWare co-founder Trent Oster also co-founded Beamdog.
The Embracer Group was originally Nordic Games, which has been around since the 90s. It didn’t become a major concern in video games until the 2000s, but it wasn’t until 2011 that it turned into something of an empire, with the adoption of the THQ brand. The holding company was renamed Embracer Group in 2019.