Electronic Arts buys Respawn for more than $400 million, new Titanfall in the works

Titanfall developer Respawn Entertainment is now an EA studio: Electronic Arts announced today that it has reached an agreement to acquire the company for $315 million, plus "additional variable cash consideration that is contingent upon achievement of certain performance milestones, relating to the development of future titles, through the end of calendar 2022," that could add up to another $140 million. 

"Our longtime partnership is grounded in a shared desire to push the boundaries and deliver extraordinary and innovative new experiences for players around the world," EA CEO Andrew Wilson said in a statement. "Together, we’ve brought this to life in the Titanfall franchise, and now with the Respawn team joining EA, we have exciting plans to accomplish even more amazing things in the future." 

"We felt that now was the time to join an industry leader that brings the resources and support we need for long term success, while still keeping our culture and creative freedom. EA has been a great partner over the years with Titanfall and Titanfall 2, and we’re excited to combine our strengths. This is a great next step for Respawn, EA, and our players," Respawn CEO Vince Zampella said. 

Zampella told VentureBeat that Respawn has "worked together [with EA] a long time from the inception of the studio," and that talk of an acquisition has come up previously. "The question was, where we are in the industry, how do we take the next step in making bigger, better games," he said. "We see the need for bigger resources to make bigger games." 

Respawn was founded in 2010 by Zampella and Jason West, also the co-founders of Call of Duty studio Infinity Ward, and has released two games thus far, both of them Titanfall. Titanfall 2 fell short of expectations despite a strongly positive critical response, and there appeared to be uncertainty about the future of the series. But it appears to have bounced back from its slow start, and EA's announcement confirms that Respawn is working on "a new title in the Titanfall universe."

The announcement also confirms that Respawn is still working on its Star Wars game, which was announced in May 2016. This news comes just a few weeks after EA canceled Visceral Games's Star Wars project, codename "Ragtag," and shuttered the studio.

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.