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Netflix acquires video game developer Night School Studio

By Kara Santos Published Sep 29, 2021 3:52 pm

Netflix has acquired independent video game developer Night School Studio, the studio behind the supernatural mystery game Oxenfree, as part of its expansion into video game territory for its streaming platform.

The streaming giant announced the business deal to expand their games team on Tuesday, Sept. 28, on its website.

“We’re inspired by their bold mission to set a new bar for storytelling in games. Their commitment to artistic excellence and proven track record make them invaluable partners as we build out the creative capabilities and library of Netflix games together.”

Netflix promised to continue working with developers around the world to deliver a great collection of exclusive games designed for every kind of gamer and any level of play. 

“Like our shows and films, these games will all be included as part of your Netflix membership—all with no ads and no in-app purchases.”

In a separate announcement, Night School Studio co-founder Sean Krankel said it was "a surreal honor to be the first games studio to join Netflix."

“Night School wants to stretch our narrative and design aspirations across distinctive, original games with heart,” Krankel said. “Netflix gives film, TV, and now game makers an unprecedented canvas to create and deliver excellent entertainment to millions of people. Our explorations in narrative gameplay and Netflix’s track record of supporting diverse storytellers was such a natural pairing. It felt like both teams came to this conclusion instinctively.”

The independent game studio founded by former Telltale Games employees Sean Krankel and Adam Hines in 2014 is known for its branching narratives, most notably the critically acclaimed teen mystery thriller Oxenfree.

Though now a Netflix subsidiary, Night School Studio confirmed that development on the sequel to their debut game, Oxenfree 2 was still underway.

The studio is also behind Afterparty, an adventure drinking game set in Hell, and Mr. Robot, a platform adventure RPG where players take the part of Asimov, a "lowly service droid", who must attempt to save humans stored in cryosleep. 

News of the acquisition comes less than a day after Netflix launched three new casual mobile games in Poland, Italy, and Spain.

Casual mobile games Card Blast, Teeter Up and Shooting Hoops were recently added on Android to Netflix members in Spain and Italy.

The move also comes a month after Stranger Things: 1984 and Stranger Things 3: The Game, two mobile game tie-ins to the hit series starring Millie Bobby Brown were introduced in Poland.

(Images via Netflix & Night School Studios)