Netflix makes its first gaming acquisition in Oxenfree developer Night School Studio

Oxenfree (Image credit: Night School Studio)

What you need to know

  • Netflix recently reaffirmed its committment to video games.
  • Netflix is acquiring Night School Studio, developers of Oxenfree and the upcoming Oxenfree 2.
  • This is the first video game development studio acquired by Netflix.

Netflix is acquiring Night School Studio, developers of the 2016 narrative adventure game Oxenfree and the upcoming sequel, Oxenfree 2. In a statement, Night School Studio explained that this came about as a result of many discussions at the team about where gaming is headed, while also noting that development will continue on Oxenfree 2 as previously announced.

"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 co-founder Sean Krankel explains.

As part of the announcement, Netflix shared that video games, like movies and TV shows, will be included as part of a Netflix subscription, with no adds or in-app purchases. Netflix officially confirmed earlier in 2021 that it would be expanding into video games, though things were still in the "early stages."

"We'll continue working with developers around the world and hiring the best talent in the industry to deliver a great collection of exclusive games designed for every kind of gamer and any level of play," writes Netflix VP of game development Mike Verdu.

This is the first game development studio acquired by Netflix, coming at a time when many teams and publishers are being grabbed, such as the acquisition of Bethesda Softworks parent company ZeniMax Media by Microsoft, bringing Xbox to 23 first-party studios. Sony Interactive Entertainment also continues to grow, recently acquiring Housemarque, Nixxes and Firesprite to grow the teams at PlayStation Studios.

Samuel Tolbert
Freelance Writer

Samuel Tolbert is a freelance writer covering gaming news, previews, reviews, interviews and different aspects of the gaming industry, specifically focusing on Xbox and PC gaming on Windows Central. You can find him on Twitter @SamuelTolbert.