Netflix announced the acquisition of its first video game studio on Tuesday evening, as the streaming giant seeks to expand its empire towards this very lucrative sector.
The company got their hands on California-based Night School Studio, which rose to prominence with the creation of the supernatural thriller Oxenfree.
The platform, which has built its success on the on-demand distribution of films, series, documentaries and, more recently, reality shows, announced in July its ambitions in the field of video games.
It had indicated to target in particular variations in virtual games of particularly popular films or series.
Night School’s “artistic excellence and recognized expertise” make it “an invaluable partner,” Netflix said. The co-founder of the Californian studio Sean Krankel, for his part, spoke of “a surreal honor” by becoming the first video game developer to join Netflix, in a blog post.
Netflix has already indicated that access to games will be included in its customers’ subscriptions.
According to several analysts, it is above all for the group to retain its subscribers at a time when competition in its core business is becoming more and more pressing.
The group has already tried the experience of virtual games by broadcasting in 2018 a fully interactive episode of the anticipation series “Black Mirror” and by launching a free mobile game based on the popular series “Stranger Things”.
Another challenge is the particularly fierce competition in the video game sector, as Netflix does not necessarily have the technical capacities necessary to broadcast sophisticated games.
In August, the group said it had started testing its capabilities in this area with users in Poland. Netflix has also recruited industry veteran from Facebook, Mike Verdu, to lead the video game team.
The fast-growing video game market now weighs more than $ 300 billion in sales worldwide, according to a study published at the end of April by the consulting firm Accenture.