Why it matters: One of Microsoft’s and Sony’s prominent strategies in their current war for console dominance seems to be buying up as many studios as possible. PlayStation Studios just acquired Firesprite—its 14th developer added to the family. More may be better, but Sony has a long road to catch up with its rival after the ZeniMax coup, which landed Microsoft with huge franchises from Bethesda and id Software.
Sony announced that it pulled another development house under its PlayStation Studios umbrella. Firesprite, the studio behind The Playroom and The Playroom VR is the 14th developer Sony has purchased to create first-party experiences for PlayStation. Several of Firesprite’s founding members worked at Sony Interactive Entertainment’s Studio Liverpool.
“Quite a few members of Firesprite come from SIE’s Studio Liverpool and we’re thrilled to welcome them back,” said PlayStation Studios head Herman Hulst. “Firesprite is a creative and ambitious studio that is exceptional at building incredible experiences that truly showcase the potential of our hardware.”
Sony shut down Wipeout maker Studio Liverpool in 2012 but continued working with the newly formed Firesprite shortly after its founding later that year. While The Playroom was more of a tech demo than a game, Firesprite also released the VR game The Persistence in 2020.
The Persistence is a novel take on a VR survival horror game where your friends can join in and help or hinder you via a mobile app. While you don the VR headset, your friends can monitor your progress on the app and guide you to helpful items or right into the arms of monsters if your buddies tend to be the more sadistic type.
Firesprite mentioned that it was currently working on a new IP, but it is in early development, so it had no specific details to reveal at this time.
“Today is an incredibly exciting day for Firesprite as we join PlayStation Studios with the backing of Hermen and the entire PlayStation Family,” said Firespite’s Managing Director Graeme Ankers. “We are very much looking forward to the next part of our journey! We can’t wait to show you what we have been working on.”