I can only describe the nature of acquisitions in the video game industry in the words of Smash Mouth: They don’t stop coming, and they don’t stop coming, and they don’t stop coming, and they don’t stop coming, and they don’t stop coming, etc.
Hell Let Loose is a platoon-based realistic multiplayer first-person shooter set during World War II. The game was developed by Australian video game developer Black Matter Studios and published by British video game developer Team17, who you might know as the developers of the Worms franchise.
The indie shooter went into early access in 2019 after a successful Kickstarter campaign, before launching fully last year for PC and later PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X/S. Many praise Hell Let Loose for its intense atmosphere and immersive gameplay, with the title really making a name for Black Matter Studios in the industry.
On January 6th, Team17 announced that they were acquiring the Hell Let Loose IP. In a document published by Team17, the company outlines the acquisition that they spent an eye-watering amount of money on.
Team17, a global games entertainment label, creative partner and developer of independent (“indie”) premium video games and developer of educational entertainment (“edutainment”) apps for children, is pleased to announce the acquisition of all rights and assets of Hell Let Loose (HLL), an existing 3rd party title to our 1st party family for an initial consideration of £31 million ($58mil AUD) plus a contingent earn out consideration of up to a maximum of £15 million ($28mil AUD) (“the Acquisition”).
Further into the document, it is established that the acquisition will allow Team17 to further build on the Hell Let Loose IP.
HLL is an existing Team17 Games Label third-party title, and as a result of the Acquisition will become part of the label’s 1st party portfolio. The Acquisition supports Team17 to further expand its owned IP and franchise footprint. It will enable Team17 to create additional opportunities to extend the lifecycle of the existing game, including further downloadable content and ongoing support as well as exploring potential sequels and other commercial opportunities for the HLL IP to drive the longer-term growth and value of the HLL franchise.
Michael Pattinson, the CEO of Team17, is quoted in the document to be “delighted” about the announcement of the acquisition, stating that the move represents “an important next step in our strategy to expand our ownership of IP that is not only of the highest quality, but importantly has long-term growth potential.”
While this acquisition does mean that Team17 will own the Hell Let Loose IP in it’s entirety, it looks like Black Matter Studios will continue to be involved in working on the game in the future. The founder and CEO of Black Matter Studios Max Rea confirms this by stating the team is “really excited to continue to work with Team17 on the next stage of growth for Hell Let Loose.”
Hell Let Loose is available to play on PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, and PC.