Beamdog, the Canadian studio and publisher responsible for modern ports of the Baldur's Gate games, will be acquired by Aspyr Media, the latter has announced. Aspyr is a Texas-based developer and publisher focused mostly on ports, but it's part of the rapidly growing Embracer Group. The latter has made a bonkers 62 acquisitions since the start of 2020, worth around $8.1 billion, according to the Financial Times.
It's a real subsidiary salad over there. Aspyr is a subsidiary of Saber Interactive, which itself is a subsidiary of the behemoth Embracer Group, which has a whooping 10 direct subsidiaries (not counting the subsidiaries of the subsidiaries!). These include Gearbox, Koch Media, THQ Nordic, and Dark Horse Media. Suffice it to say, Beamdog will soon belong to a very, very large company with a market valuation of $9.9 billion.
The acquisition is still subject to regulatory approval, but when the process is finalized Beamdog will operate as an "independent studio" within Aspyr. Aspyr will publish Beamdog's forthcoming MythForce when it launches into early access next week, but it sounds like Beamdog could be tasked with more legacy projects as well. In his statement, Aspyr CEO Ted Staloch said that "we look forward to seeing them realize their ambition with MythForce while maximizing the long-term potential of an incredible archive of classic games.”
Beamdog has the experience, having issued modern enhanced editions of two Baldur's Gate games, Planescape: Torment, Neverwinter Nights and more. That experience is further bolstered by the fact that BioWare co-founder Trent Oster was also a co-founder of Beamdog.
Embracer Group was originally Nordic Games, which has been around since the '90s. It didn't become a big concern in videogames until the 2000s, but 2011 was when it turned into an empire of sorts, with its adoption of the THQ trademark. The holding company rebranded to Embracer Group in 2019.