Well this was certainly unexpected. Today Wargaming.net announced it had purchased Age of Empires Online developers Gas Powered Games. Why you may ask? Well it you haven’t been following GPG since Age of Empires Online, you may be unaware of the fact the company attempted a Kickstarter campaign for a new title called Wildman which unfortunately fell far short of its 1.1m goal. During the Kickstarter Chris Taylor, founder of Gas Powered Games revealed the company was not doing so hot. In fact, the developer had to lay off a large portion of their staff earlier this year and it was made clear that Wildman was perhaps the company’s last hope for survival.
Now with GPG safely under the protective treads/wings of Wargaming the studio has been given a second chance at life. While we do not know how GPG will operate under its new owners including whether or not they can continue working on current projects like Wildman, we do know Wargaming values GPG’s past experience. This is apparent when Victor Kislyi, CEO of Wargaming commented on the matter stating:
“Gas Powered Games’ heritage and development pedigree shows us just how valuable an addition Chris and his company will make to the Wargaming family,” said Victor. “Gas Powered Games has a long track record of providing incredibly engaging AAA gaming experiences and we can’t wait to start working with them.”
It will be interesting to see if Wargaming intends on converting GPG into a solely F2P company or if they will merely be providing the financial muscle needed for GPG to continue making games in general. While GPG’s previous title Age of Empires Online was F2P, the company has a long non-F2P history with series like Dungeon Siege and Supreme Commander. I suppose all we can do now is wait and see.