Activision confirms Demonware acquisition

Publisher Activision has this afternoon confirmed reports that it has acquired Dublin-based multiplayer technology company Demonware, although financial terms of the deal remain undisclosed.

The deal will see Activision taking Demonware under its wing as a wholly-owned subsidiary, with Demonware's management and employees signing long-term contracts with Activision. The firm will continue to be headquartered in Dublin, with North American offices in Vancouver.

News of the deal broke in the middle of last month, but neither Activision nor Demonware has officially confirmed the acquisition until today.

Activision has used Demonware's network and multiplayer technologies, which include a match-making and community services system and a low-level network engine to ensure high quality gameplay, in a number of its games, most recently in Call of Duty 3. Other Demonware clients include Ubisoft and Atari - but industry precedents suggest that licensing of Demonware's technology to third parties is unlikely to continue following the acquisition.

"In the next two-to-four years, we expect that online gaming will grow significantly as a result of a more seamless plug and play experience provided by the next-generation consoles," explained Activision CEO Mike Griffith in a statement on the deal.

"The acquisition of DemonWare will enable us to eliminate many of the challenges associated with online multiplayer game development, reducing development time and risk, and allowing us to deliver consistent, high-quality online gaming experiences. In addition to increasing our talent pool of highly skilled engineers, DemonWare's suite of technologies combined with Activision's own library of tools and technologies will enable us to easily share online development capabilities on multiple platforms across our development studios."

DemonWare was founded in 2003 by Dylan Collins and Sean Blanchfield. While neither party had discussed financial terms of the acquisition, speculation in the Irish business press has suggested that the deal is worth over 15 million Euro.

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