In something of a surprise move, Wargaming, the Belarussian crew responsible for World Of Tanks and the forthcoming World Of Warplanes has acquired Day 1 Studios, most recently responsible for F.3.A.R. According to Wargaming CEO Victor Kislyi, the $20 million acquisition ”is a huge step for Wargaming, as we begin to expand our presence into new platforms,” particularly the console realm.
Day 1 co-founder and FASA Interactive veteran Denny Thorley has been given the nod to head newly-minted Wargaming West. He praised Wargaming’s free-to-play presence, in reference to World Of Tanks, and states that he and his team, along with any new hires brought in by the acquisition’s accompanying employment push, are “extremely excited to start the first console project for Wargaming.” Whether this project will be free-to-play, as is Wargaming’s current modus operandi and is slowly seeing more acceptance on the console front, or a more traditional, full-price outing, remains to be revealed.
Wargaming already has a U.S. headquarters in San Francisco, CA, but that branch is primarily in place to handle North American audiences for World Of Tanks, the currently beta-testing World Of Warplanes, and the eventual third game in their proposed trinity of free-to-play war simulators, World Of Warships. Wargaming has also been expanding its reach into other realms, with the recent kickoff of their YouTube channel and their backing of David Cundall’s quest to unearth a lost squadron of British Spitfire aircraft in Burma.
Chicago-based Day 1 got their start back in 2001, providing the Xbox with the much-lauded MechAssault and its sequel. They later teamed up with Monolith Productions to port the original F.E.A.R. to consoles in 2006, before releasing the less-well-received Fracture two years later, and returned to wrap up their earlier first-person horror series with F.3.A.R. in 2011.