Japanese expertise large Sony says it can purchase online game developer Bungie in a deal price $3.6bn (£2.7bn).
The US-based firm is finest recognized for the Future and Halo gaming franchises.
Sony says the deal will give it management of Bungie’s franchises and entry to its dwell gaming companies, because it goals to “attain billions of gamers”.
Earlier this month, Microsoft revealed plans to purchase video video games large Activision Blizzard for $68.7bn, which is the trade’s largest-ever deal.
“This is a crucial step in our technique to broaden the attain of PlayStation to a a lot wider viewers,” mentioned Jim Ryan, president and chief government of Sony Interactive Leisure (SIE).
“We perceive how very important Bungie’s group is to the studio and look ahead to supporting them as they continue to be impartial and proceed to develop.”
Sony didn’t present a timeline for when it expects the deal to be finalised.
Bungie, which relies in Washington state, has greater than 900 staff.
Beneath the deal, the agency will function independently and proceed to publish its personal video games after the takeover is accomplished.
Bungie is engaged on increasing its Future 2 universe, the first-person shooter online game which was launched in 2017.
“Each Bungie and SIE consider that recreation worlds are solely the start of what our IP [intellectual property] will turn into,” mentioned Bungie’s chief government and chairman Pete Parsons.
“Our unique universes have immense potential and, with SIE’s assist, we’ll propel Bungie into turning into a worldwide multi-media leisure firm devoted to delivering on our inventive imaginative and prescient,” he mentioned.
The Sony-Bungie deal helped make January a report month for mergers and acquisitions (M&A) within the video video games trade.
There have been two different main offers, with Grand Theft Auto creator Take-Two Interactive unveiling its buyout of Zynga for $12.7bn and Microsoft’s plan to buy trade large Activision Blizzard for $68.7bn.
“These three offers alone surpass the 2021 M&A deal worth of $85bn, which had already been an annual report,” mentioned Daniel Ahmad, a senior analyst at market intelligence firm Niko Companions.
Mr Ahmad mentioned he expects extra consolidation within the gaming trade this yr.
“Know-how and media firms, specifically, are viewing the sport writer and developer firms to have priceless IP, expertise and content material” added Mr Ahmad, who covers the Center East, North Africa and Asia online game trade.
“This leads us to think about not ‘Will there be one other acquisition?’ however relatively ‘Who’s subsequent?'”
The Activision Blizzard takeover would be the greatest acquisition in Microsoft’s historical past and can see it taking possession of gaming franchises together with Name of Responsibility, Warcraft and Overwatch. The deal is anticipated to be finalised in 2023.
Microsoft and Sony are in a battle for reputation amongst players.
Sony’s PlayStation 5 console is usually seen as having the lead over Microsoft’s fourth-generation Xbox fashions.
The Japanese firm has strengthened its community of in-house video games studios and delivered a string of unique hits in recent times, together with in its Spider-man franchise.
It’s also a pioneer in digital actuality and teased some particulars about its next-generation headset final month.