38 Studios has acquired internal THQ outfit Big Huge Games, including all of its intellectual property, tools, technology, assets and work-in-progress.
The company said the acquisition is a "critical step" to creating a broad range of products based on 38 Studios original fantasy project, codenamed Copernicus.
"The acquisition of Big Huge Games will be tremendously beneficial to the growth, market position, financial stability, and long-term success of 38 Studios," commented Brett Close, CEO and President of 38 Studios.
"BHG’s cross-platform RTS/RPG engine will accelerate the realisation of our online entertainment experience for the Copernicus IP. The acquisition enables us to develop and deliver top-quality games in multiple genres that are based in a shared world, ultimately maximising the value of our Copernicus MMOG and the intellectual property as a whole."
Big Huge Games was founded in 2000 and developed Rise of Nations. The team is currently developing a role-playing game for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and PC.
Troubled publisher THQ had been seeking a sale of Big Huge Games since March, and in April was forced to lay off a number of staff.
38 Studios' Copernicus is being created with the help of fantasy author RA Salvatore and comic book artist Todd McFarlane, and is intended to span videogame, comic, novel, toy, movie and TV formats.
"The highly regarded developers at BHG, including leading role-playing and real-time strategy design teams led by Ken Rolston, are a perfect complement to 38 Studios’ staggering array of talent. Big Huge Games is a phenomenal team and, culturally, a natural fit," added Curt Shilling, founder of 38 Studios.