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More game industry news coming at you following the Team17 buying up Golf With Your Friends and YoYo Games being acquired by Opera we now have Klei Entertainment agreeing for Tencent to take a majority stake in them.

Speaking in a forum post, studio head Jamie Cheng mentioned they've "agreed to deal for Tencent to purchase a majority stake in Klei Entertainment" and that "Klei retains full autonomy of creative and operations across all aspects of the studio, including projects, talent, and more".

Klei have actually been working with Tencent since 2016, as Tencent helped Klei distribute games through China on the WeGame platform and more recently a mobile Don't Starve game. Cheng also mentioned how a "large proportion" of their players are actually from China.

Tencent have invested in a lot of different companies including Riot Games, Epic Games, Funcom, Supercell, Bluehole (PUBG) and many many more. 

Pictured - Don't Starve Together

Klei have been good to Linux for games giving us the likes of Don't Starve, Don't Starve Together, Oxygen Not Included, Invisible, Inc. and Mark of the Ninja. Hopefully more to come with creative control remaining with the current Klei head.

This trend of companies pulling together lots under their banner is a little worrying, too many eggs in one basket.

Article taken from GamingOnLinux.com.
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42 comments
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Kandarihu 22 Jan
This is very worrying. Tencent is directly under control of the CCP. And I used to have a very high amount of respect for Klei, too. But as long as Tencent has a controlling interest, I don't think it's wise to have their software running on my computer. Heck. I wasn't even aware that Klei was publicly traded.
Dribbleondo 22 Jan
....aaaaand here come the conspiracy theorists...
eldaking 22 Jan
Well, the other day I was talking with my friends about how studios acquired by Tencent either remain totally unchanged (in the case of well-established properties) or immediately shift into exploitative gacha (the smaller, less famous ones). So I'd say Klei is on the safe, regarding creative autonomy - even safer than it would be with most other studios like Microsoft, EA, Ubisoft, 2K or Sony that are famous for meddling with stuff.

Still, always sad when studios are bought out by megacorps.
Nezchan 22 Jan
Well, not getting into the Chinese government issue, but Tencent is very much the masters of predatory monetization. A lot of what is rightly criticized about Fortnite originates from their effective control of the company and let's not even get into their mobile stuff. It would not surprise me a bit if Klei's games started including new and interesting ways to siphon money out of your pocket.
Kimyrielle 22 Jan
Quoting: Dribbleondo....aaaaand here come the conspiracy theorists...

Don't need to be a conspiracy theorist to be against market concentration. Having a clue about economics is enough.
Dribbleondo 22 Jan
QuoteA lot of what is rightly criticized about Fortnite originates from their effective control of the company

Tencent don't have any "effective control" over Fortnite. They get a say, sure, but others in the Board of Directors can Veto, which is the furthest thing from effective control as you can get.
Quoting: Kimyrielle
Quoting: Dribbleondo....aaaaand here come the conspiracy theorists...

Don't need to be a conspiracy theorist to be against market concentration. Having a clue about economics is enough.
I don't believe that was what Dribbleondo was referring to, given that their post was directly under one talking about the Chinese Communist Party.
I'm also generally not happy when big companies swallow little ones, especially if they do it a lot. I couldn't really care less if the company doing the swallowing happens to be Chinese, though.


Last edited by Purple Library Guy on 22 January 2021 at 11:13 pm UTC
MrKiasu 23 Jan
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The better conspiracy theory is Tencent == Epic investor == force all Klei games to be EGS exclusive == no more linux.
pb 23 Jan
Quoting: MrKiasuThe better conspiracy theory is Tencent == Epic investor == force all Klei games to be EGS exclusive == no more linux.

Probably not all, but the next release - very likely.
TheSHEEEP 23 Jan
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I was going to say " 'China Bad!' screechers in 3... 2... 1..." but it appears I am too late.
Oh, well.

Quoting: NezchanWell, not getting into the Chinese government issue, but Tencent is very much the masters of predatory monetization.
I'm not worried about the Chinese government at all, but that part is indeed something I'd see as very worrying - and that would be the same if EA had acquired them.
We'll see just how quickly Klei turns from industry darling to something else entirely now.
Just shows that anyone can be bought for the right price.
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