It might be Gamescom 2019 week, but Sony has once again managed to steal the spotlight out from under one of the summer's biggest gaming conferences with the announcement that the company has purchased Insomniac Games, the developer behind Spider-Man on PS4. Insomniac Games' title was one of the most popular releases of 2018 and was many people's Game of the Year, contending for the spot of best super hero video game ever made.
Sony's been relatively quiet about its future plans recently, despite the PS5 presumably being close on the horizon. The gaming giant was noticeably absent from E3 2019 but has since begun making moves, most notably with a heavy presence at the China Joy 2019 event. That hasn't hurt PS4 sales, however, as the console remains one of the most popular of all-time and is even threatening to close in on the PS2's all-time great status in terms of sales.
A report from Kotaku revealed earlier today that Sony had purchased Insomniac Games, the California-based studio that is best known for Spider-Man on PS4 but has also made a name for itself as the creator of Resistance, Sunset Overdrive, and Ratchet & Clank, among others. Insomniac will now be a PlayStation-exclusive developer, making it the latest entry into an already impressive stable of first-party developers and a major blow to Microsoft, which has recently been scrambling to add new developers to its stable to help make Xbox Scarlett more palatable with exclusives that can compete with Sony's.
It's hard to tell exactly what this means as very few details have been revealed about the acquisition yet, but just having Insomniac Games as an official PlayStation studio is a huge boon for Sony. In an industry where first-party exclusives are becoming increasingly crucial with more players, like Google Stadia, beginning to make waves, acquiring the team behind one of the biggest releases last year can't be overstated in terms of importance. While Insomniac was close to a Sony-owned studio already - it was producing more Sony exclusives than anything else, and is famous for Spider-Man PS4 and Ratchet & Clank - the developer also famously valued its independence. Being acquired by Sony also means that the company has rights to a Sunset Overdrive sequel, whether that's of interest to it or not.
Ultimately, this is a massive development that will absolutely impact the way the PS5 is perceived when it's announced. Having Insomniac Games as part of a company's roster is a major draw for fans of gaming, and it's possible the acquisition could sell a slew of PS5 units before Insomniac even announces its next title.