PlayStation Acquires Returnal Developer Housemarque

June 29, 2021

Housemarque is officially a PlayStation first-party studio. The news comes via an announcement on the PlayStation Blog welcoming the Returnal developer to the “PlayStation Studios family”.

In a post penned by Hermen Hulst, the Head of PlayStation Studios discusses his admiration for the studio from its early days.

“This addition enhances the creative force of PlayStation Studios, and I cannot wait to see what the future holds for Housemarque.”

Often tipped to become a PlayStation first-party studio, Housemarque has been fiercely independent since being founded in 1995 alongside the launch of Super Stardust. However, it wasn't until 2007’s Super Stardust HD that the developer made a game for a PlayStation platform. Still, through exclusive games like Dead Nation and PS4 launch title Resogun the studio managed to establish strong links with PlayStation and its fan base. The release of Returnal earlier this year appears to have shifted that balance.

“Today is a big day for Housemarque,” says studio co-founder and Managing Director Ilari Kuittinen. “We are so excited to finally join the PlayStation Studios family! This gives our studio a clear future and a stable opportunity to continue delivering on gameplay centric approaches, while still experimenting with new methods of narrative delivery and pushing the boundaries of this modern artform.”

In 2017, following “lacklustre” sales of Nex Machina, Housemarque infamously announced “Arcade is Dead,” and that the studio would press forward on larger-scale titles — Returnal eventually being one of them. It’s safe to say that such a switch in focus has worked for the studio and today Ilari Kuittinen is excited for his studio’s future:

“With the backing of SIE and its family of studios supporting us, we can truly grow into our place in the industry and show what Housemarque can create with no limitations.”

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Ant Barlow

Started with the PlayStation, now I'm here... with a PlayStation. Once skipped school to play the Metal Gear Solid demo repeatedly. I love stories big and small. Trophy hunter. Recent VR convert. Probably a hipster.