Video game industry giants like Sony, Microsoft, and Take Two Interactive have been on quite the buying spree as of late. The fact is made even more apparent when you look at the total value of all mergers and acquisitions made in January 2022. The deals totaled a whopping $85 billion in a single month. In comparison, the total value of all acquisitions in the entire year of 2021 was also $85 billion.
Why 2022 will be a big year for the video game industry
Let’s break those numbers down. Firstly, the Microsoft Activision Blizzard deal is the biggest out of the three major deals by far. Weighing in at a jaw-dropping $68.7 billion, the acquisition makes up a bulk of the total spend in January 2022. The deal is so significant that the FTC is reviewing it to make sure it doesn’t break any anti-competition laws. Following that, we have the Take Two Interactive Zynga deal, which went down at the start of January. The deal cost Take Two $12.7 billion in exchange for one of the biggest mobile game developers in the world.
Finally, we have the most recent acquisition: Sony’s Bungie buyout. Acquiring Bungie cost Sony a comparatively lesser $3.6 billion, but is still signficant in the wider video game industry. Furthermore, PlayStation CEO Jim Ryan has already hinted at more acquisitions on the horizon.
The total value (publicly disclosed) of all video game related deals in 2021 was $85 billion according to Drake Star Partners.
The value of Microsoft > Activision Blizzard, Take Two > Zynga and Sony > Bungie, announced in Jan 2022, is already $85 billion.
— Daniel Ahmad (@ZhugeEX) January 31, 2022
Opinion: More spending doesn’t equal a healthy industry
Andrew writes… There are pros and cons to large-scale buyouts. Some studios may benefit from a large company like Sony or Microsoft backing them financially, allowing them to take more risky creative choices. Others might feel constrained or forced into exclusivity deals. While it might be tempting to point at last year’s spending numbers and say that the video game industry is growing, that isn’t neccesarily a good thing for neither developers nor gamers. Only time will tell whether these deals will be benefitial in the long run. Regardless, 2022 will prove to be a historic year in gaming.
In other news, Electronic Arts has stated that Battlefield 2042 has not met sales expectations. Publisher Team17 recently backed down on NFT plans after several of its developers criticised the move on social media.