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Big Fish Acquires Grubby Games, 'New Brand' Coming Soon

Big Fish Acquires Grubby Games, 'New Brand' Coming Soon Exclusive

April 30, 2009 | By Leigh Alexander

Seattle-based casual game portal Big Fish Games has acquired Vancouver Incredibots, Professor Fizzwizzle creator and multiple-time Independent Games Festival finalist Grubby Games, the company announced today.

The studio will be fully integrated into Big Fish "in just a few short weeks," according to Grubby Games co-founder and CEO Ryan Clark.

"Grubby Games was an attractive acquisition for Big Fish Games because of its strong cultural fit and uniquely talented development team with a track record for building sustainable brands and proprietary technologies," Big Fish president and CEO Jeremy Lewis tells Gamasutra.

Grubby's game technology, as seen in recent IGF finalist and online physics-based title Incredibots and downloadable game My Tribe, was another draw for Big Fish.

"We are not disclosing all aspects of the proprietary technology, but some aspects of it include an engine for procedurally generating interactive content subject to user play," Lewis explains. "This dramatically enhances replay ability, a critical element for an addictive sim experience."

Based on Grubby's existing tech, "Big Fish Games will be releasing a new brand in the next quarter," Lewis says.

Big Fish distributes over 1.5 million titles per day, working with more than 500 game developers. Some of its top distributed titles include Mystery Case Files, Hidden Expedition, Azada and Fairway Solitaire. We asked Lewis if the Grubby acquisition was part of an overall expansion strategy and whether the company planned to acquire more studios.

"Very selectively, yes," he says, "with a focus on cultural fit and alignment with our strategic vision."

Grubby CEO Clark agrees that the culture aligns in this case: "Big Fish Games has a remarkable culture and a unique multi-platform development approach that aligns with our vision for creating a differentiated content," he says. "We are thrilled to be a part of Big Fish Games."

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