Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Epic buys Brazil-based game developer Aquiris to boost Fortnite

Epic Games is expanding its footprint in Latin America with the purchase of Aquiris, a Brazilian game company.

Aquiris will become Epic Games Brasil, giving the social gaming giant a foothold in the country’s fast-growing gaming market. Epic invested an undisclosed amount in Aquiris a year ago, lauding the developer’s “artistic and technical capabilities,” its use of Unreal Engine and its prominent position in the Latin American gaming scene at the time.

The developer is known for creating Wonderbox: The Adventure Maker, a magic-themed game-creation sandbox available on Apple Arcade. Like Fortnite, Wonderbox emphasizes customizable avatars and a beginner-friendly game creation environment that invites players to design their own experiences. Aquiris’ other original franchise is Horizon Chase, a 90s-inspired arcade racing series that is also available on Apple Arcade.

While Epic clearly saw the value in Aquiris’ existing titles, it will leverage the Brazilian game developer’s team for its own ever-expanding crown jewel. Epic says that the studio will now “create groundbreaking content and social experiences within Fortnite,” though it’s not clear if games like Wonderbox and Horizon Chase will get rolled into Epic’s sprawling game playground or if Aquiris will be building original experiences for the game. The details of the deal were not disclosed.

“We are delighted to leverage our experience using Unreal Engine on game development to contribute to the future of Fortnite,” Aquiris CEO Mauricio Longoni said of the acquisition. “Aquiris has been on the forefront of game development in Brazil and Latin America and becoming part of Epic Games will spotlight our region’s developers for the entire industry.”

Epic Games has been aggressively building toward Fortnite’s future, making it clear that the game will grow well beyond its image as a cartoony multiplayer shooter. The company is already years into huge licensing partnerships that bring characters from Marvel, hit albums and even Dragon Ball Z into its core game. Last year, Epic and Lego announced a long-term plan to build a kid-friendly virtual world and game creation engine that takes direct aim at Roblox, the platform synonymous with kids and gaming.

Epic buys Brazil-based game developer Aquiris to boost Fortnite by Taylor Hatmaker originally published on TechCrunch

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