PlaySide acquires Dumb Ways To Die franchise

Melbourne-based video game developer PlaySide Studios has announced they have acquired the Dumb Ways To Die (DWTD) franchise for $2.25 million in cash. 

Melbourne-based video game developer PlaySide Studios has announced they have acquired the Dumb Ways To Die (DWTD) franchise for $2.25 million in cash. 

This landmark acquisition includes six freemium games, five premium educational apps, 50 DWTD characters, songs, international trademarks across 19 countries, DWTD merchandise and various social media accounts with more than two million subscribers.

Dumb Ways To Die is a globally recognised brand and will integrate seamlessly into PlaySide’s mobile games strategy and portfolio. 

A Dumb Ways To Die TikTok video posted this week clocked up over 1.7 million views in 24 hours, highlighting the broad appeal of the game and potential for marketing in this space.

PlaySide plans to expand the DWTD portfolio of games and believes there are strong global licensing opportunities across various industries such as games, rail, insurance, medical and public health that it will pursue throughout FY22 and beyond.

Commenting on the acquisition, CEO Gerry Sakkas said: “This is a strategic mobile franchise acquisition for PlaySide. Dumb Ways To Die is one of the largest Australian-made gaming brands with a truly global organic reach. We are excited to welcome hundreds of millions of players worldwide to our portfolio and we look forward to growing the brand in years to come.”

Facebook taps PlaySide Studios for additional work-for-hire

Melbourne-based video game developer PlaySide Studios will be producing up to 16 mini-games for Facebook’s virtual reality platform under an expanded work-for-hire deal announced last week.

The agreement builds on the initial deal between the two companies, which tasked PlaySide with ‘conceptualisation, creation and development’ of prototype games on Facebook Horizon VR.

Those responsibilities have been increased under the new agreement, and PlaySide will now deliver between 10 and 16 mini-games designed to be playable on the Oculus Quest virtual reality gaming system.

“This is a fantastic win for PlaySide and validation from the team at Facebook that we are delivering the value that they need for content expansion on the Facebook Horizon platform,” PlaySide CEO Gerry Sakkas said.

“We share in the passion and excitement around Facebook Horizon, and it is a privilege to be selected to help them continue this journey.”

The contract value of the deal has also increased by 90%, which PlaySide said is reflective of the confidence Facebook Technologies has in the game developer’s capabilities.

Early bird catches Worms developer deal

The expansion of PlaySide’s deal with Facebook comes shortly after the company inked a $2.44 million publishing deal with independent game developer and distributor Team17.

The British company, best known for its titles Worms and Overcooked, agreed to provide the money (through recoupable monthly payments over a nine-month term) to secure the rights to publish PlaySide’s Age of Darkness: Final Stand.

Mr Sakkas described the deal as “groundbreaking” for the company.

“This is the first PC publishing arrangement PlaySide has entered, and it is extremely exciting that it is with one of the largest indie games publishers in the world,” he said.

“The partnership shows true merit and recognition in the excellence and quality of Age of Darkness, and I am so proud of the development team for everything they have achieved to date. The game looks brilliant.”

The new game, due for release on October 7, puts players in control of humanity’s last outpost against hordes of photophobic monsters known as ‘Nightmares’, which assault the players’ kingdom each night as darkness falls.,

Using PlaySide’s internally developed ‘SwarmTech’, Age of Darkness is capable of rendering up to 100,000 enemy units on-screen simultaneously, meaning players will need to carefully manage their resources and train up their unique heroes to survive until dawn.

To stay updated with the latest company news and announcements, please register your details on PlaySide Studios’ investor centre.

 Reach Markets has been engaged by PlaySide Studios to assist in its private investor management.


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