Warner Bros. telling Traveller's Tales

Cash-flush game arm of multimedia conglomerate acquires British developer of Lego Star Wars, Lego Batman, and Bionicle Heroes.

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Last month, Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment was openly on a shopping spree. "We're madly looking for development partners [and] we're looking at acquisitions," WBIE senior vice president Samantha Ryan eagerly told GameSpot. Her enthusiasm was well founded--and well funded, given that the emerging publisher had just landed $500 million in funding from a Abu Dhabi-based financial group.

"Holy high-powered buyout, Batman!"

Today, WBIE revealed its first acquisition since its half-billion-dollar windfall. The interactive arm of Time Warner is now the proud owner of Traveller's Tales, the British developer of the Bioncle series and the wildly popular Lego Star Wars series. Not so coincidentally, the studio is currently developing Lego Batman: The Game for WBIE, which was apparently so impressed with the results, it bought the company.

The joint announcement from WBIE and Traveller's Tales did not contain any financial details of the transaction. It also did not mention whether or not the staff of Traveller's Tales or its publishing arm, TT Games, would be affected by the buyout. However, the announcement did say Traveller's Tales would continue to maintain its relationships with previous partners, such as LucasArts and Lego.

Traveller's Tales is the second studio WBIE has bought since its foundation in January 2004. It picked up the first, Monolith Productions (F.E.A.R., The Matrix Online, Project Origin, Condemned), eight months later.

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