The competition in the streaming landscape has reached new heights, thanks to the arrival of new players and the pandemic-fueled rise in demand. This has forced veterans like Netflix and Amazon to explore innovative ways to stay ahead in the race (like the new Prime Video Channels in India). Netflix, which still remains the biggest player in the market, has now acquired Oxenfree developer Night School Studio as it looks to make true on its promise of expanding into the gaming segment.
Night School is the first game studio acquired by Netflix. The streaming powerhouse has already rolled out several mobile games in Poland, Spain, and Italy, and is continuing to expand into the sector and diversify its revenue sources as it aims to get an edge over its competitors, including Disney+ and HBO, which have risen to popularity quickly.
The terms of the acquisition have not been disclosed yet. According to Sean Krankel, founder and CCO of Night School, the studio wanted to stretch its narrative and design aspirations across distinctive, original games with heart.
“Netflix gives film, TV, and now game makers an unprecedented canvas to create and deliver excellent entertainment to millions of people. Our explorations in narrative gameplay and Netflix’s track record of supporting diverse storytellers were such a natural pairing. It felt like both teams came to this conclusion instinctively,” Krnakel said. For now, it will continue to work on Oxenfree’s sequel, Oxenfree II, and develop new games.
The games will be a part of Netflix’s subscription – if you have a Netflix account, then you will be able to play the games, without advertisements and in-app purchases. For now, Netflix will continue working with developers across the globe and hire the best talent in the industry in order to develop a great collection of exclusive games which are designed for all kinds of gamers.
Night School’s “commitment to artistic excellence and proven track record make them invaluable partners as we build out the creative capabilities and library of Netflix games together,” said Mike Verdu, vice president of game development, Netflix.