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.