Chinese games firm NetEase has acquired Japanese developer Grasshopper Manufacture.
No figure has been placed on the deal, which sees Goichi "Suda51" Suda's (pictured) apparently benefitting from the expertise that the Chinese company boasts.
Grasshopper Manufacture was founded back in 1998 and is best-known for anarchic, stylish and action-heavy titles, such as Killer7, No More Heroes and Lollipop Chainsaw.
The firm was bought by GungHo Online in 2013, with the duo collaborating on Let It Die. Five years later, the partnership broke down and Grasshopper Manufacture became a much smaller independent entity.
"As we all know, NetEase Games has developed many excellent games in the past, and I have long been aware of NetEase's creative capabilities. When talking with NetEase about 'developing more unique console games together', we resonated," Suda wrote in an announcement.
"After a lot of thoughts, we’ve unanimously decided to 'get together' in the long term through deeper cooperation to create more good content for gamers.
"NetEase Games understands the strengths of Grasshopper Manufacture Inc. and is willing to support us, and is an extremely reliable partner. NetEase Games will be mainly responsible for advising on our business planning activities and providing sufficient funding for game development. We will be responsible for the creativity and production of games to ensure that we are able to continue to maintain the consistent 'Grasshopper Manufacture flavour' and game quality for which we are known."
NetEase added: "NetEase Games is a company of passionate gamers, and many of them are fans of Grasshopper Manufacture Inc. Mr Suda's games have unique characteristics. They manifest his design philosophy and artistic pursuit in every aspect – from concept to content. Grasshopper Manufacture Inc. has also integrated styles and elements from various media formats, such as film noir, detective fiction, punk rock, psychedelic electronica, cyberpunk, and so on. Additionally, Grasshopper Manufacture Inc. is one of a kind in terms of mood-setting, movement design, and narrative rhythm design. Their strong passion for creativity, which has continued for decades, is extremely admirable. NetEase is honored to be the companion of Mr Suda and Grasshopper Manufacture Inc. on this new journey into the future. We hope to give the studio creative freedom and sufficient resource support in order to empower said studio to create even more sensational works for gamers worldwide."