Zynga Buys Echtra From Former Diablo Dev

The acquisition comes as Zynga looks to expand into PC and console gaming.


Mobile/social game giant Zynga has acquired Torchlight III developer Echtra Games, the studio founded by Diablo veteran Max Schaefer.

Echtra will develop a "new, yet to be announced RPG" with cross-platform mechanics for Zynga, alongside the company’s NaturalMotion studio. As part of the buyout, Zynga also gets Echtra's proprietary cross-platform development tools and tech.

"Max and his team at Echtra Games are responsible for some of the most legendary game properties ever created, and they are experts in the action RPG genre and cross-platform development. I'm excited to welcome the Echtra Games team into the Zynga family," Zynga CEO Frank Gibeau said in a statement. "This acquisition will be instrumental in growing our iconic licenses and brands from mobile to PCs and consoles, while helping to further expand Zynga’s total addressable market."

Schaefer said Echtra is "delighted" to join Zynga. "We share Zynga's vision that cross-platform play is an essential part of the future of RPGs and interactive entertainment and are eager to apply our vast experience and talents to this effort," he said.

Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

This is just the latest big development for Zynga, which recently announced the free-to-play Star Wars game, Star Wars: Hunters, for Nintendo Switch and mobile devices.

Schaefer is a co-founder of Blizzard North, the studio that created the Diablo franchise. Schaefer would eventually leave Blizzard to start a new studio, Runic Games, which developed the original Torchlight and its sequel.

Schaefer then moved to Echtra and released Torchlight III in October 2020 for console and PC.

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