D&D Beyond goes under the wing of Wizards of the Coast in a $146 million deal – TechCrunch

The parent company of Dungeons & Dragons publisher Wizards of the Coast will buy D&D Beyond, the popular digital role-playing tool suite. The company broke the news this week in a press release, revealing that it would be buying D&D Beyond from current owner Fandom in a $146.3 million cash deal. Wizards of the Coast is a subsidiary of toymaker Hasbro, which bought the company in 1999.

Fandom, which hosts fan sites for popular titles in movies, games, and TV, purchased D&D Beyond and the rest of the company’s media assets in 2017 from game mod and community tool Curse, who was being absorbed into a deal with Tic.

“D&D Beyond has been one of our most valued partners in the digital space for the past six years, and we’re thrilled to bring their best talent to our team,” said Cynthia Williams, president of Wizards of the Coast and Digital. “The D&D Beyond team has built an incredible digital platform, and together we will deliver the best possible Dungeons & Dragons experience to players around the world.”

D&D Beyond is a digital playmate that’s ubiquitous enough in the scene that you can’t be blamed for thinking Wizards already had it. The company’s website and app serve as something of a digital Swiss army knife for D&D gamers, offering everything from character creation and encounter building to digital dice (use at your own risk). be judged by your table). The app, which offers paid subscription tiers as well as basic free access, already has more than 10 million users.

Prior to the deal, Wizards and D&D Beyond were already collaborating closely, with the latter hosting exclusive digital access to all official D&D sourcebooks. This arrangement has long been a source of consternation among gamers reluctant to repurchase a digital copy of a physical book they already own, and some are hoping that pairing digital access with paper source books could be in the works. cards with the acquisition.

Wizards is hosting a special event streamed live on YouTube and Twitch on April 21 at 9:00 a.m. PT, so we may know more about its plans at that time. The trailer shows off a game map, minis and a somewhat out of place Xbox controller, so it’s possible we’ll also hear about new game titles or a suitable launch date for Baldur’s Gate 3, the next adventure. role-playing game developed by Divinity: Original Sin maker Larian.

Business is booming for Wizards of the Coast, which also publishes the strategy card game Magic: The Gathering. Between the pandemic forcing people to get creative with remote socializing and the wide exposure of hit live games like Critical Role — Twitch’s top earner — Wizards seems to be expanding the roleplaying game’s audience by a magnitude. The company has generated over $1.3 billion in revenue in 2021, and with film and TV spinoffs from the vast fantasy multiverse on the tabletop, that’s only going to grow.

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