PlayStation Buys Firewalk StudiosGames News PlayStation
PlayStation announced today that Firewalk Studios, a developer focused on making AAA multiplayer titles, would formally become a first-party team following a years long relationship between the two. This partnership, announced in 2021, would see Firewalk developing their first original multiplayer game exclusively for PlayStation. While we’ve yet to see or hear anything about this title beyond this announcement, it seems PlayStation likes what they’ve seen enough to go all in on the studio.
The announcement on the PlayStation Blog reads, “Since announcing our publishing partnership with ProbablyMonsters and Firewalk in 2021, we continue to be impressed by the team’s ambitions to build a modern multiplayer game that connects players in new and innovate ways.” Elsewhere, the statement says, “We’re excited for Firewalk to bring their technical and creative expertise to PlayStation Studios to help grow our live service operations and deliver something truly special for gamers.”
The last bit of that statement is of particular note, as the language falls in line with PlayStation’s recent push to have a glut of service games as part of their next generation of exclusives. The publisher, which has mostly made a name for itself in the last decade as the home of prestige single-player games like The Last of Us and God of War, purchased Bungie in 2022 to similarly support these live service efforts get off the ground.
This also isn’t the first time that a partnership with PlayStation has evolved into a studio being bought out. Haven Studios, a team founded by Jade Raymond of Assassin’s Creed fame, cut a similar deal about a month before the partnership with Firewalk was announced. Almost exactly a year later, PlayStation outright bought Haven too, turning them into another first-party developer under the expanding umbrella of PlayStation Studios. Haven is also working on a live service multiplayer title for PlayStation that hasn’t been announced.
Suffice to say, with this latest purchase of Firewalk, with more surely to come, PlayStation is betting big on the live service bubble. Given the year that those kinds of games have had, it’s a wonder if it isn’t too late to get in on it. But I guess if anyone can make that costly a wager (or mistake) it’s likely PlayStation.