Tencent to buy majority share in Klei, makers of Don’t Starve

Chinese language tech large Tencent will buy a majority stake in Klei Leisure, the Canadian indie developer behind Don’t Starve, studio founder Jamie Cheng introduced Friday on the corporate’s official boards.

“As a part of this settlement,” Cheng wrote, “Klei retains full autonomy of artistic and operations throughout all features of the studio, together with tasks, expertise, and extra.” Cheng cited “a altering trade” as a significant component in his resolution.

Klei was first profiled right here at Polygon in 2013. The corporate rose to prominence that very same 12 months with the discharge of Don’t Starve, a unusual survival sport with a playful artwork type. The sport ultimately developed into Don’t Starve Collectively, which added multiplayer and different options to the expertise. Cheng based Klei in 2005 in Vancouver, British Columbia; the studio’s different video games embrace 2010’s Shank and 2012’s Mark of the Ninja.

Don’t Starve Collectively is definitely the place Klei’s relationship with Tencent started. In 2016, Klei partnered with the corporate to convey Don’t Starve Collectively to China, the place the sport has been wildly profitable. Notably, it was the very first sport to launch on the WeGame platform, Tencent’s equal of Steam.

“We checked out plenty of totally different corporations,” Cheng stated within the submit, “and through the years, we’ve labored with numerous publishers and distributors. Tencent is the one firm that we felt would allow us to retain the extent of management that we demand.”

Cheng added that the expertise for gamers in North America ought to be unchanged after Tencent acquires the bulk stake in Klei, whereas these in China will start receiving “higher assist” as a result of buy.

That is removed from the primary time that Tencent, the world’s largest distributor of video video games, has made an funding in Western builders and publishers. The large Chinese language firm owns Riot Video games (League of Legends), and has investments in Epic Video games (Fortnite), Activision Blizzard (Name of Obligation, World of Warcraft), Paradox Interactive, Roblox, and lots of others. Tencent can be invested in gaming-adjacent know-how corporations like Discord and Reddit. Income from these investments has helped founder “Pony” Ma Huateng turn out to be the wealthiest man in China, in keeping with a 2017 report.

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