Paradox Interactive acquires Battletech studio Harebrained Schemes

Shadowrun and Battletech studio Harebrained Schemes is now a part of Paradox Interactive, which announced today that it was acquired by the developer in total for $7.5 million plus a percentage of earnings over the next five years. Harebrained "will continue to operate with its own internal management and creative teams," Paradox said, "designing and developing the games that have earned them their outstanding reputation." 

Paradox's publishing partnership on Battletech, Harebrained's most recent game, was "a fantastic collaboration," Paradox CEO Fredrik Wester said. "Harebrained Schemes have proven themselves as a world-class studio with a very talented team within a genre where Paradox wants to be present. In addition, we really like the studio, the people who run it, and their games; these are all absolute hard criteria for us in any acquisition." 

Paradox will handle Harebrained's finances, marketing, PR, and distribution going forward, while the studio will "have the freedom to creative direct our games and build our player experiences." Future Harebrained projects will have to be approved by Paradox's publishing processes, however. 

Harebrained CEO Jordan Weisman said the growth of the studio and the "noise" of the marketplace prompted the studio to seek out a permanent publishing partner "that could provide us the financial stability and marketing expertise that would allow us focus on what we love doing—making great games and stories." Experience with the Paradox fan base after the release of Battletech was also a factor in the decision, president Mitch Gitelman added, saying, "The fit just works." 

Paradox said it plans to continue support for Battletech with future updates and additional content, solidifying comments about possible future expansions made by Harebrained in May. The studio has also begun "concept development" for an entirely new project. 

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.