Nuverse has long been known for the graphical finesse of its titles. The Shanghai-based studio was acquired by ByteDance in 2021 and was also the publisher of Mobile Game of the Year winner, Marvel Snap.
A change of strategy
Earlier this month rumours arose that ByteDance was looking to sell Moonton, now given more credence with divestment plans from its fellow subsidiary Nuverse.
Nuverse has been involved in numerous games from Marvel Snap to Flower to Ragnarok X: Next Generation, but ByteDance is now reportedly looking to divest from its existing titles and halt production of new games as of December. This comes according to Reuters, who spoke with ByteDance spokespeople about the situation.
"We regularly review our businesses and make adjustments to centre on long-term strategic growth areas. Following a recent review, we've made the difficult decision to restructure our gaming business," said one spokesperson.
This would mark quite the stark turnaround after successes like Marvel Snap, though it appears the game has had more of a fan following than a financial one. Nuverse only announced another licensed game in Bleach: Soul Resonance this summer. However, the gaming U-turn is indicative of the modern climate with reduced investments and fewer M&A moves compared to even one year ago. Furthermore, delays to the Activision Blizzard deal may have deterred potential buyers as it’s looking more and more like that was the last big monetary shift we’ll be seeing in gaming for a while.
In such circumstances, there is a logic in ByteDance focusing its funds on TikTok instead of external games, as gaming titles within TikTok will supposedly remain unaffected by the Nuverse divest. ByteDance has also reduced its content team at VR company Pico, further showing this streamlining to its core business.
We recently spoke with Second Dinner's Ben Brode about Marvel Snap's success and "the greatest creative collaboration of all time".