Recently, Sony announced that it had acquired developer Housemarque and brought it into the PlayStation Studios family. This means that the company is now financially safe within Sony’s umbrella, because Sony will front the bill for all future game development. This will allow the developer to make more of the games that it wants to, rather than having to focus specifically on the titles that make them the most money. This is a battle that all developers struggle with, and unfortunately, the money usually wins out since the company needs to keep the lights on. Now though, we should expect to see a marked change in Housemarque from its next game forwards.
The most recent game from Housemarque was Returnal, a PS5 exclusive. I have no doubt that this is the game that finally convinced Sony to purchase the company. Getting an offer like that, with financial stability for your entire future, is not one that you turn down. The gameplay of Returnal is gripping, as is the story. Despite it getting to the point where you need to pile hours into a single run, Returnal is fantastic, and that’s been reflected in the review scores it got. I myself still love the game and would play it more if there weren’t other things that had to be done in life.
I’ll admit that Returnal isn’t a game for everyone though. It’s a grueling fight through some incredibly tough areas against bosses that rip you apart if you’re not ready for them. Patience is what’s required for this game, and that’s not something everyone has. Especially when there’s no way to save a run that you’re in the middle of. However, it’s good enough that it impressed the head of PlayStation Studios, and that’s why Housemarque is now firmly a part of that company.
I’m really excited to see what Housemarque can do now it has this financial stability, particularly with Returnal. I expect some very interesting DLC to come along, and the company is definitely going to smash it out of the park. We’ll have to see if this also means that Returnal is now heading to PC as well, which would be insane.