What’s Next for Daybreak Game Company (Formerly SOE)?


Surprising news broke today that Sony sold off their Sony Online Entertainment division to an investment management company, Columbus Nova. SOE is from now on to be called Daybreak Game Company.

What makes this a shock is the recent Early Access release of H1Z1, which despite some controversy is absolutely a financial success. The company is also directly responsible for other successful properties such as Everquest, Planetside 2, and DC Universe Online. The question, now, is what’s next for the company?

In the official press release, Jason Epstein (Senior Partner of Columbus Nova) mentioned an intended “expansion of the company’s game portfolio through multi-platform offerings.” This dedication to a multiplatform world is further echoed by John Smedley, the president of Daybreak Game Company who tweeted that he “can’t wait to make Xbox One games!”

A lot is uncertain about the coming days for the company, but for now it at least looks like they are continuing forward with development of H1Z1, Everquest Landmark and EverQuest Next. I will be interested to see if the company breaks away from the MMO model, or at least finds interesting twists on the model in the future.

SOE ran into issues with The Matrix Online and Star Wars Galaxies. DC Universe Online wasn’t exactly a smashing success either, and the combination of these poorly performing games resulted in multiple layoffs from SOE in San Diego and Austin last year. H1Z1 and Planetside 2, however, are probably their largest current departures from the classic MMO model, and I think that serves the company and the gaming industry better as a whole. Just recently PlanetSide 2 was entered into the Guinness Book of World Records for the largest ever First Person Shooter battle which included 1158 players in a single battle.

The promise of more multiplatform titles may also mean we will be seeing PlanetSide 2 on the Xbox One, which definitely seems like a positive step forward. Fans of the series have been eagerly awaiting the release of the game on the Playstation 4. There is no official release date of the console version yet, though, which means there’s every possibility we could see Microsoft’s console added to the list.

For now, with so much up in the air it’s hard to say conclusively what is next. We can speculate all we want, but in the end a lot will depend on how Columbus Nova sees the future of the games industry and what they expect of John Smedley.

About Stephen Crane

Stephen was hooked by the NES at a very young age and never looked back. He games on a daily basis and is currently trying to climb his way up the ranked ladder on League of Legends! Outside of the video game world he actually likes running and owns a rapidly growing collection of toed shoes. Stephen Crane is the owner of Armed Gamer.

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