Insomniac Games, the studio behind Marvel’s Spider-Man, becomes an exclusive Sony developer.


Marvel’s Spider-Man (2018)

Throughout 25 years of independent game making, Insomniac closely collaborated with Sony on Spyro the Dragon, Ratchet & Clank and Resistance series, while also working with Microsoft on Sunset Overdrive, and with Oculus on an upcoming VR title Stormland. Last year’s Spider-Man released exclusively for Sony became a global hit selling 13.2 million copies.

Given the history of consistent success Insomniac has had on PlayStation, it only makes sense that the California-based company will now become an internal Sony studio.

Sony Interactive chairman Shawn Layden talked to Hollywood Reporter about the acquisition. Here’s the important stuff:

  • Layden revealed that the decision to purchase Insomniac was motivated by the studio’s record of “quality and innovation,” with the success of Spider-Man being the perfect context to formalize the relationship between partners.
  • The publisher will not change processes and culture at Insomniac other than by ensuring the studio has a broader access to Sony’s  technology and expertise.
  • Insomniac will focus on Ratchet & Clank and Spider-Man IP, with the latter’s sequel inevitably coming on PlayStation 5. Sony also holds rights for Sunset Overdrive, which was a Microsoft exclusive, but the company has no imminent plans for this one.
  • Layden also stressed that Insomniac is free to pursue any new concepts they like.

Insomniac has become Sony’s 14th internal studio alongside Guerrilla Games responsible for Horizon Zero Dawn and Little Big Planet maker Media Molecule.

What all of these studios have in common, according to Layden, is their focus on “the power of narrative, the power of storytelling.”

Describing Sony’s strategy for studio acquisition, he said:

“We want to tell stories. We want to create a place where game developers can bring their vision to life and tell stories that impact the emotions and interests of our gamers.”

Not all studios matching this profile, however, are willing to go exclusive. Recently Quantic Dream and Supermassive Games, both of which have traditionally worked with Sony, decided to opt out of exclusivity and embrace multi-platform publishing.