It’s quite commonplace for companies like Microsoft and Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) to acquire smaller studios that’ve got popular IPs and teams to support them. Over the last 18 months, Facebook has been doing the same in the virtual reality (VR) space, the latest being Downpour Interactive, the indie team behind popular military shooter Onward.
Facebook’s Mike Verdu, VP of VR/AR Content made the announcement this weekend, explaining: “Downpour Interactive leads the VR industry as a best-in-class example of a developer working in tandem with its loyal community to create the best possible social and gaming experience.”
“We’ve seen great success with Onward on the Oculus platform for several years—first on Rift and more recently on Quest. Becoming part of the Oculus Studios family will give Downpour Interactive the opportunity to cultivate both the Onward community with the full support of Oculus Studios resources, and, in the future, pursue other projects,” he continued.
Onward originally arrived on Steam Early Access back in 2016, a multiplayer-only shooter with realistic weapon handling and physics. Downpour Interactive then managed to port Onward onto Oculus Quest last year, greatly expanding the user base whilst offering solo, coop, and 5v5 competitive gameplay modes across a variety of maps.
“With us joining Oculus Studios at Facebook, we can now realize Onward’s full vision with tremendous support and resources. This means a better game for all our players on all platforms,” said Downpour Interactive’s Founder and CEO Dante Buckley in a separate blog post. “There are no changes in hierarchy or in vision, everyone at Downpour is still working hard to deliver you the best game possible. Thank you all for your continued support, and stay tuned for future updates and content.”
Terms of the deal weren’t revealed but both announcements did note Facebook’s acquisition wouldn’t affect non-Oculus versions of the videogame, all supported platforms would be maintained. Of course, that’s not to say future projects by Downpour Interactive won’t be exclusive to the Oculus platform. Downpour Interactive now joins Beat Games (Beat Saber), Sanzaru Games (Asgard’s Wrath), and Ready at Dawn (Lone Echo) under the Facebook umbrella. For continued updates on Onward, keep reading VRFocus.