Today, Starbreeze has cashed in on quite a big media payday, pun intended: the Swedish company announced that it has acquired full rights to the Payday franchise from publisher 505 Games.
The deal for Payday ran a receipt totaling about $30,000,000 worth of shares, and means the future of the franchise will now be solely in the hands of developers Overkill Software. As if this wasn’t big enough news, the studio then went on to nonchalantly confirm Payday 3 as they discussed parts of the deal, which is big news for fans of the series.
For its part, 505 Games will continue to split revenue generated by Payday 2: Crime Wave on consoles, and will retain a 33% revenue share of future sales from Payday 3, up to a maximum of 40 million dollars. Clearly, both the studio and the former publisher think that a third iteration of the franchise will sell well, and if the amount of downloadable content from the second game is any indication, it likely will.
Here’s what Starbreeze CEO Bo Andersson Klint had to say about his move to acquire the franchise:
“Payday is very close to my heart, and has laid the foundation for Starbreeze success in recent years. We’re very excited to bring our heisters home to the safe house.”
Klint went on to say that the company will continue to support Payday 2 with additional content for at least 18 months, so gamers should not worry that the acquisition means that Payday 2 will meet an instant retirement.
The studio garnered much controversy last year after an event called Crimefest introduced paid stat-boosting content into the game. The studio justified the move by saying the new content wasn’t pay to win at all, and ensured gamers the revenue from the title would be put toward extending the longevity of the title – which, as it turns out, has now been given an 18 month lifespan. Whether the introduction of this content was publisher-influenced or not remains to be confirmed, but either way, giving the developers more control of their own title usually ends up being a good thing.
In any event, the confirmation of Payday 3 is sure to be good news for fans of the series, even if Starbreeze didn’t confirm anything more than the existence of a sequel. For now, whatever potential heist crews or gameplay enhancements Payday 3 will include remain a mystery, though many fans will be hoping for more news at E3 2016.
Payday 3 currently has no release date.