Gearbox's We Happy Few publisher role unaffected by Microsoft's purchase of developer Compulsion

Gearbox's We Happy Few publisher role unaffected by Microsoft's purchase of developer Compulsion

Gearbox Publishing has clarified how it will be working with We Happy Few maker Compulsion following Microsoft buying the Montreal-based game developer.

Speaking to, Gearbox PR manager Austin Malcolm said that the Texas-developer-turned-publisher would be working on We Happy Few for the duration of the project's lifespan, with Microsoft picking up on future projects.

Compulsion was recently bought by Microsoft as part of a wave of purchases announced at this year's E3. Along with the We Happy Few developer, the big M snapped up Hellblade maker Ninja Theory as well as the studio behind the State of Decay franchise, Undead Labs. In addition, the firm has set up a brand new Santa Monica-based developer called The Initiative.

The amount Microsoft paid for the above has not been revealed just yet.

"We are focusing on We Happy Few and the way we see it is Microsoft comes in after that. We still have, depending on how everything goes, the DLC to help with and moving forward it's back to Microsoft," said Gearbox PR manager Austin Malcolm.

"Microsoft there to support both Compulsion and Gearbox all the way through for We Happy Few. After that, we'll let them and see what new things are there and help them and cheer them on."

We Happy Few is a trippy drug-themed title that's been available on PC since 2016 in Early Access. The game was funded via Kickstarter, raising $266,163 of its $200,000 goal.

Last year, Gearbox - the developer is best known for Borderlands and Bulletstorm - announced it would be picking up publishing duties for the project, which is finally launching on August 10th.

You can read more about We Happy Few in our upcoming with Compulsion and Gearbox

PCGamesInsider Contributing Editor

Alex Calvin is a freelance journalist who writes about the business of games. He started out at UK trade paper MCV in 2013 and left as deputy editor over three years later. In June 2017, he joined Steel Media as the editor for new site In October 2019 he left this full-time position at the company but still contributes to the site on a daily basis. He has also written for, VGC, Games London, The Observer/Guardian and Esquire UK.