Video game developer Bungie, known for hit games like Halo and Destiny are parting ways with video game publisher Activision, with whom they have had a publishing agreement since 2010. Activision will be transferring over the publishing rights for Destiny to Bungie, giving the developer full control of the franchise. Activision, for its part, has said it will “Increase its focus on owned IP and other projects.”. Variety reports that this split has hit Activision Blizzard stock with a 6.5% drop after hours. Activision has had substantial restructuring of late with two of its executives departing and new heads named for Activision, Blizzard and King.
Bungie left Microsoft in 2007 to become an independent company, but unlike this deal, was forced to leave the rights of Halo with Microsoft.
Part of their statement on bungie.net reads as follows:
“When we first launched our partnership with Activision in 2010, the gaming industry was in a pretty different place. As an independent studio setting out to build a brand new experience, we wanted a partner willing to take a big leap of faith with us. We had a vision for Destiny that we believed in, but to launch a game of that magnitude, we needed the support of an established publishing partner.
With Activision, we created something special. To date, Destiny has delivered a combination of over 50 million games and expansions to players all around the world. More importantly, we’ve also witnessed a remarkable community – tens of millions of Guardians strong – rise up and embrace Destiny, to play together, to make and share memories, and even to do truly great things that reach far beyond the game we share, to deliver a positive impact on people’s everyday lives.
We have enjoyed a successful eight-year run and would like to thank Activision for their partnership on Destiny. Looking ahead, we’re excited to announce plans for Activision to transfer publishing rights for Destiny to Bungie. With our remarkable Destiny community, we are ready to publish on our own, while Activision will increase their focus on owned IP projects.”