Netflix expands gaming test as it buys a popular indie studio

Eric Abent - Sep 29, 2021, 11:43am CDT
Netflix expands gaming test as it buys a popular indie studio

Earlier this summer, we saw Netflix take the first step toward adding mobile games to its subscription service, and today the company is putting some more pressure on the gas pedal. Not only is Netflix rolling out its mobile games pilot to a pair of new regions today, but it’s also announcing that it has acquired a game development studio. If you needed more indication that Netflix is serious about breaking into gaming, this is probably it.

In a post to its website, Netflix revealed that it had acquired Night School Studio. While not necessarily a household name, Night School Studio may be better known for its debut video game, Oxenfree. While specific details about what this acquisition entails are still slim, Netflix says that the folks at Night School Studio will be “invaluable partners as we build out the creative capabilities and library of Netflix games together.”

Netflix goes on to say that the games Night School crafts under the Netflix banner will be free to subscribers with “no ads and no in-app purchases.” Night School tends to focus on narrative-driven adventure games, so it’s a good pick if Netflix wants to make games based on its various exclusive shows. In a separate blog post, Night School Studio’s Sean Krankel says that development will continue on Oxenfree II following this acquisition, so it looks like nothing is changing on that front.

Reuters also reports that Netflix has expanded its mobile gaming pilot to two new regions: Spain and Italy. This pilot was first launched in Poland back in August with Stanger Things: 1984 and Stranger Things 3: The Game. Three new games – Card Blast, Teeter Up, and Shooting Hoops – are joining Netflix’s mobile game lineup today in all three regions where the test is available.

We don’t know when this test will spread to the United States, but we could be waiting a while. When Netflix first launched this gaming test last month, the company said that it was “still the very, very early days” and that it had a lot of work ahead. In any case, we’ll keep you in the loop in regards to Netflix’s gaming ambitions, so stay tuned for more.


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