We may soon see Netflix games as the streaming giants announced on Tuesday that they have acquired Oxenfree developers Night School Studio. This unexpected alliance makes it the first time that Netflix has scooped up a gaming company, demonstrating their first foray into the world of gaming.
In July 2021, it was widely reported that Netflix was making plans to foray into game making. The company then confirmed reports on July 14 when it announced former Electronic Arts inc. Executive Mike Verdu as its Vice President on Game Development. In a press release on their site on Tuesday, Verdu announced the acquisition of Night School Studio, saying that Netflix ‘is in the early stages of creating a great gaming experience’.
‘Founded by Sean Krankel and Adam Hines in 2014, Night School Studio is best known for their critically acclaimed debut game, OXENFREE. We’re inspired by their bold mission to set a new bar for storytelling in games. Their commitment to artistic excellence and proven track record make them invaluable partners as we build out the creative capabilities and library of Netflix games together,’ the statement read.
Verdu also gave a glimpse as to the specifics of how the gaming catalog will be operating. According to him, it will largely be accessed in like fashion as the current model of Netflix shows and films. “Like our shows and films, these games will all be included as part of your Netflix membership — all with no ads and no in-app purchases,” he said.
Meanwhile, Night School Studio called it a ’surreal honour’ to be the first game studio to join Netflix.
Night School wants to stretch our narrative and design aspirations across distinctive, original games with heart. Netflix gives film, TV, and now game makers an unprecedented canvas to create and deliver excellent entertainment to millions of people. Our explorations in narrative gameplay and Netflix’s track record of supporting diverse storytellers was such a natural pairing. It felt like both teams came to this conclusion instinctively.”
Night School Studio is currently working on Oxenfree II: Lost Signals, and it is expected that work will continue as planned. The company also hinted that the gaming studio might be providing titles for Netflix’s upcoming catalog of games.
Netflix soft-launched their gaming service in August, with free game titles available to Netflix subscribers in Poland.