More On Daybreak's Acquisition: SSG Ownership, Sales Breakdowns, And A Marvel Game?
We're still trying to sort out all the fine points of Enad Global 7's acquisition of Daybreak Game Company yesterday. Fortunately, EG7 has made that process a little easier, as the company put out an investor's presentation that addresses many of the details regarding the relationships between Daybreak and its affiliated companies.
First off, it should be noted that EG7's been very busy lately. In addition to Daybreak, it also acquired MechWarrior Online developer Piranha Games last week, and in recent years has scooped up game devs Art Plant, Toadman Studios, Big Blue Bubble, and Antimatter Games. So don't be surprised if you hear about other companies joining the EG7 family in the future, especially as the acquisition of Daybreak offers "a strengthened team to identify and execute further M&A" (mergers and acquisitions).
Regarding Daybreak specifically, one of the bullet points in the presentation includes "Extremely popular original IPs and iconic third-party IPs, i.e. EverQuest, Planetside, Lord of the Rings and DC." Jack Emmert is listed as the CEO of Dimensional Ink and Standing Stone Games, while DI and SSG are listed as being beneath Darkpaw Games in the company's legal group structure. A timeline of Daybreak's history has a 2016 entry titled "Daybreak acquires Turbine and Standing Stone Games."
Part of the above statement is in error, however, as the former Turbine still exists as a subsidiary of Warner Bros. under the name WB Games Boston. Regarding the other topic, we have confirmed with Daybreak that it did fully acquire SSG in 2016, despite SSG's claims in 2016 of being "independent" and that Daybreak was only offering "global publishing services" for The Lord of the Rings Online and Dungeons & Dragons Online.
Curiously, the presentation states that Daybreak has a "License agreement with Marvel," hinting at an unannounced Marvel game in development. We've again confirmed that that is the case, though Daybreak wouldn't provide any additional details at this time.
Next up, we can see the percentages of net bookings (i.e., "sales") for each game under the Daybreak banner for the first nine months of 2020. DC Universe Online leads the way with a sizable 38%, followed by EverQuest (17%), The Lord of the Rings Online (14%), PlanetSide 2 (11%), Dungeons & Dragons Online (10%), and EverQuest II (9%); H1Z1 is not listed. Daybreak claimed 116,000 regular daily and 411,000 regular monthly users in Q3 2020. The percentage of players who spend real money in each game ranges from 10% for PS2 to 42% for EQ2, with original EQ just behind at 41%, while the biggest spenders among those who do spend are DDO players, who average $65.20 per month.
As for the future of Daybreak's games, DCUO is scheduled to receive "Modernized visuals, upgrade key game systems and add brand new large content" in Q4 2021 to capitalize on the new consoles. Meanwhile, LotRO will have "visual and technical updates for LOTRO for PC and nextgen consoles" in 2022 to capitalize on the upcoming Amazon Lord of the Rings series. That reveals at least one important thing about LotRO: namely, that any worries about it vanishing in the wake of the Athlon game seem unfounded. As for the console "announcement," it's being framed by Daybreak as an "exploring all options" kind of statement and not confirmation of the game's development or impending launch on the PS5 or Xbox Series S/X; personally, I'd put the possibility of such an event at close to nil.
No matter how it all shakes out, it seems like we'll be writing a lot more about Enad Global 7 in the future. One of its "Group Strategy" points is "Focus on free-to-play online with predictable and stable income," so it and its constituent companies should be getting regular coverage on MMOBomb for some time.
About the Author
Jason Winter is a veteran gaming journalist, he brings a wide range of experience to MMOBomb, including two years with Beckett Media where he served as the editor of the leading gaming magazine Massive Online Gamer. He has also written professionally for several gaming websites.
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