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AT&T reportedly looking to sell Warner Bros. gaming division including NetherRealm Studios and possibly Mortal Kombat property

EA, Activision and Take-Two all interested in the deal

Posted by Dakota 'DarkHorse' Hills • June 13, 2020 at 6:45 a.m. PDT • Comments: 47

When AT&T and Time Warner completed their multi-billion dollar merger deal back in 2018, many wondered what the side effects of what the massive move could entail though it's doubtful that video games were a large part of that conversation. Now, apparently they are.

Parent company AT&T is reportedly trying to unload Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment / WB Games including the development team at NetherRealm Studios and possibly the Mortal Kombat property according to CNBC.

The potential move already has the attention of other major publishers including Take-Two Interactive Software, Electronic Arts and Activision Blizzard where a deal could reportedly be worth around $4 billion says the report.

Since many of the titles under WB Games' umbrella surround Warner-owned series like Harry Potter and DC Comics, people close to the matter claim AT&T may enter a licensing agreement to continue earning revenue even if things end up changing hands.

It's unclear what this could mean for the development staff involved and projects which may already be in the works though it would likely kill the hope of an Injustice 3 unless some special licensing is worked out as mentioned above.

NetherRealm Studios formed out of the ashes of the collapse of Midway in 2010 to join the WB Games umbrella where they've created some of the best-selling fighting games of all time with Mortal Kombat X and now Mortal Kombat 11: Aftermath.

In fact, Mortal Kombat 11 topped multiple months as the best-seller in the United States in 2019 according to NPD, and it finished in fifth place overall.

The worst case scenario in this situation may be a future where WB Games and NRS are sold off to another publisher, but the Mortal Kombat IP stays with AT&T and effectively bar the creators of the franchise from developing more MK games without a license.

Other developers included under the WB Games umbrella include Monolith Productions, Rocksteady Studios, WB Games Montreal, Avalanche Software and TT Games — the makers of the Lego games — among others.

No deal is reportedly anywhere close to being assured as of yet, so there's a good chance their parent company may be testing the waters to see what could be on the table as AT&T looks to cut costs in the coming months / years.

AT&T acquired Time Warner in 2018 for $109 billion though they currently carry around $165 billion in debt. Other assets and services may be spun out or sold as well including DirecTV.

Sent in by FHSJ.

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