China has quite a bit of influence in western entertainment, and that spread of influence shows no sign of stopping as large Chinese companies own an ever-growing slice of the video game industry pie.
Earlier today, the Chinese company NetEase Games acquired a minority stake in the French video game developer Quantic Dream. This is not the first time NetEase has taken an interest in foreign companies, as NetEase has a long-standing relationship with Activision Blizzard.
For those of you unacquainted with the term, a minority stake is less than fifty percent of a company’s shares. In other words, NetEase invested an unspecified amount of money in Quantic Dream but doesn’t own it.
According to the press release, Quantic Dream will still function independently, but the VP of NetEase Games, Ethan Wang, has high hopes for this partnership. Wang explained, “With a strong focus on in-house development, we are constantly looking for partners that complement us in the development and creation of the next generation games. Quantic Dream’s excellence in interactive storytelling and the valuable expertise it has built over the past two decades is exactly what we have been looking for. We are pleased to partner with Quantic Dream and we hope to create incredible game experiences for players all around the globe.”
Quantic Dream’s CEO and Creative Director David Cage mirrored Wang’s enthusiasm.
“The landscape of the gaming indsutry will go through major evolutions in the coming years, awith new hardware to come, new business models to explore and new ways of playing to invent,” stated Cage. “We want Quantic Dream to take a key role in this exciting future and having NetEase by our side as a strategic partner will allow us to expand our creative vision and develop the company to its fullest potential. NeteEase understands what Quantic is about as they share our passion for high quality games and our ambitiosn for the studio.”
While NetEase Games is mostly known for licensing and operating games in China, including World of Warcraft, Hearthstone, Overwatch, and Minecraft, it has developed several games, including Onmyoji and the upcoming Diablo Immortal. Meanwhile, Quantic Dream has made a name for itself with quirky, narrative experiences such as Detroit: Become Human, Heavy Rain, and Fahrenheit: Indigo Prophecy. Only time will tell if this partnership will be fruitful.