Tencent Seeks Full Ownership of Funcom for $148 million

File this under news that you didn’t expect to see, but also aren’t all that surprised by, Tencent seeks full ownership of Funcom and they’re offering $148 million to make it happen. To do this Tencent is offering all current Funcom shareholders NOK 17.00 per share, which is 27.3% higher than the closing price of Funcom shares on January 21st. The shareholders are free to either accept or reject the offer but Funcom’s management board and supervisory board have unanimously decided to recommend that shareholders DO accept the offer.

The good news for Funcom and its fans is that if the acquisition goes through it will happen much like Tencent’s other acquisitions have, very hands-off. The management, staff, structure, and the company itself will remain as they are. This means that all the games and everything you know and love about Funcom will be staying exactly the same. Tencent has actually been a majority stakeholder in the company since October 2019.

Talking about the deal Funcom CEO Rui Casais had this to say, “We have had a great relationship with Tencent as our largest shareholder so far and we are excited about this opportunity. We will continue to develop great games that people all over the world will play, and we believe that the support of Tencent will take Funcom to the next level. Tencent will provide Funcom with operational leverage and insights from its vast knowledge as the leading company in the game space.”

Senior Vice President of Tencent Steven Ma commented, “We are impressed by Funcom’s strengths as a developer of open-world multiplayer, action and survival games. Funcom has a strong track-record in developing new titles with long life span. We are glad to deepen our relationship with Funcom and look forward to collaborating with Funcom to deliver more exciting and enjoyable game experiences to fans worldwide.”

In connection with this offer, which from the sounds of it Funcom really wants to see happen, they have announced a few changes they hope to make to the games they’re working on. This includes expanding the scope of the upcoming Dune game. To its investors, the management board of Funcom had this to say, “The Management Board is of the opinion that these factors justify a more ambitious Dune project to launch after around two years of production time. Such increased focus would require a redirection of resources from other initiatives, the most significant being the co-op shooter game, initially scheduled for release during 2020 that has been impacted by scope changes due to external/market pressures with increasingly strong competition and internal delays. The Management Board believes that the scope and ambition level for the Dune game should be larger than Conan Exiles to allow the game the best possible chance of maximizing its very large potential. If these proposed changes are approved by the Supervisory Board, it is likely that the Company will need additional financing to supplement the revenue generated from current operations.”

This will result in the delay of this co-op shooter game until after the release of the Dune game. Just last week they announced that the horror game Moons of Madness would be delayed until March 24th.

 

Source: Press Release

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Three New Dune Video Games on the Way

Its been a while since the last Dune video games were released, 18 years in fact. The last one was Frank Herbert’s Dune in 2001 and was based on the 2000 Sci-Fi Channel miniseries. The game was such a failure that the studio that created it, Cryo Interactive Entertainment went bankrupt after its release. But, that was the early 2000s. Now, nearly 20 years on we’re getting a new Dune movie (with names like Dave Bautista, Oscar Issac, Josh Brolin, and Jason Momoa) and three new Dune video games as well.

These games will be made by a studio that has had a lot of success with older IPs, Age of Conan creators, Funcom. Legendary Entertainment and Funcom have entered into a six-year-long agreement that will see three Dune games being made at the very least. The games will be for both PC and consoles and at least one of them will be an Open World Multiplayer game.

So, if we look back at the Q3 2018 report Funcom gave when we saw six games in the pipeline for the company we can see things a little more clearly. Mutant Year Zero: Road to Eden launched on December 4th and currently has a 79% positive rating on Steam, plus a Metascore on Metacritic of 78.

The top-secret Conan game being made with Petroglyph is a strategy game called Conan Unconquered which will be released Q2 2019 for PC.

The Funcom IP game being made by Rock Pocket Games that is set to release on Halloween is still a mystery. Though looking at the studio’s official site you see that they’re working on a story-driven first-person horror game that draws elements from H.P. Lovecraft called Moons of Madness. This may not be the game they’re working on with Funcom, but it sounds like it would be right at home in the universe of The Secret World.

The top-secret Heroic Signatures game being developed in house is still a mystery. Though in the Q3 report it didn’t have a release date, now in the Q4 report it has been given a release date of 2020.

The top-secret Conan single player game is still top secret, but it has also been given a release date of 2020, so there has been some progress there.

Finally, from the Q3 2018 report, there was the top secret open world multiplayer game. We now know that this is the Dune multiplayer.

We also now know that Funcom has 13 total active projects that include 5 new projects plus 8 existing or prototype games. Which, according to my math…tells me we have some games that haven’t made it in the quarterly reports yet and haven’t been announced.

 

Please excuse the non-Dune images, we don’t have any of the new Dune games yet so we used Conan instead. That’s practically the same thing…right?

 

Source: Funcom Quarterly Report

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