Publisher Little Orbit is best known for games based on kid-friendly licenses like Ben 10 but it's shifting gears with some new acquisitions.
The firm has purchased the IP for online multiplayer game APB Reloaded as well as the GamersFirst platform. This is part of a larger transition that the firm has been going through in recent years, having also acquired the rights to Kickstarter RPG Unsung Story in 2017.
The amount involved in the deal has not been disclosed.
Speaking to GamesBeat, Little Orbit CEO Matthew Scott (pictured) said that the firm is having to totally rework how it develops games now that it has long run times.
“In a way we’re sort of building our own house at this point. If you think of licensing as leasing a place, renting a place, and then you give it up - for me it creates a lot of blue sky where we have the incentive to invest in our own house,” said Scott.
“We’ve pivoted a lot of the staff. About half of our staff has turned over in terms of the way we think about this. I think we need to bring on younger, and a different style of staff involved in maintaining an online game, which we just didn’t have previously. It involves a longer development cycle, and it involves a lot of what I would call ongoing development or maintenance development, where you’re constantly iterating and adding and keeping that game fresh and thinking about what’s next.”
Scott said that Little Orbit was tired of being unable to iterate and create great games on its own terms.
“You have to play catch-up,” he explained.
“There isn’t the time to iterate and do a really good quality game. You have to hit the date. There’s a lot of pressure. We decided we weren’t going to do that anymore.”
APB: All Points Bulletin was an MMO title launched for Windows back in 2010. The firm developing the game - Realtime Worlds - went into administration that same year, with the project going down as part of that.
Online games firm K2 Network stepped in, buying the brand for a cool £1.5m and pivoted the project to a free-to-play business model with the APB: Reloaded rebrand.