March 28, 2022
Netflix acquired mobile game developer Boss Fight Entertainment, an indie based in Allen, Texas with studios in Austin and Seattle. In the gaming world, a “boss” is a formidable computer-controlled enemy and battling them takes strategy as well as fast reflexes. The subgenre has its own fans, many of whom form teams to take on the boss. The company is known for titles including the RPG “Dungeon Boss” and casual game “MyVegas Bingo.” Netflix began building its game portfolio last year when it bought Glendale, California-based Night School Studio in October.
The streamer subsequently released five Android games from a variety of developers, and earlier this month announced the purchase of Finland-based Next Games for a price reported to be $72 million. Netflix didn’t disclose its outlay for Boss Fight.
Netflix vice president of game studios Amir Rahimi said in a statement that the acquisition fits its plan to build a world-class game unit whose products are offered with “no ads and no in-app purchases,” offered to its more than 220 million global subscribers.
In an interview with The New York Times, Netflix vice president of games “Mike Verdu, who was brought on to lead Netflix’s gaming push after working at Facebook and Electronic Arts, said Netflix intended to distinguish itself using the brand appeal of its shows, which could be turned into games.” Games built around Netflix hits “could interest gamers purely through name recognition, even if Netflix does not yet have a reputation for making popular game titles,” NYT added.
To date, “Netflix has released 16 games, available in its app for iOS and Android, including two titles tied to ‘Stranger Things,’” Variety reports, noting that “later this month, the company plans to debut ‘Into the Dead 2: Unleashed,’ its first first-person shooter.”
Founded in 2013 by CEO David Rippy, CCO Bill Jackson and COO Scott Winsett, the company now has about 130 employees. “Netflix’s commitment to offer ad-free games as part of members’ subscriptions enables game developers like us to focus on creating delightful game play without worrying about monetization,” the Boss Fight team said in a statement.
Rahimi says the gamer will continue to run out of its existing facilities, enabling the streamer “to tap into great creative talent beyond California.”