Confirmed: EA Acquires KlickNation, Source Says Price is Roughly $35M

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By Kim-Mai Cutler Comment

Electronic Arts said it acquired KlickNation to beef up its RPG games on social networks after we broke the news about the deal yesterday. The Sacramento, Calif.-based company will become part of BioWare’s social gaming team.

EA says the studio will focus on role-playing games for social networks and will be led by KlickNation’s chief executive Mark Otero. The terms of the acquisition were not disclosed, but a source tells us that the total price was roughly $35 million, including earnouts and retention bonuses. KlickNation’s games also probably won’t be sunsetted even though they have seen a slight slip in active usage over the past month.

In acquiring KlickNation, EA enters the emerging core gamer market on Facebook, which is currently dominated by strategy combat games like Kixeye’s Backyard Monsters and IGG’s Galaxy Online 2. CrowdStar and RockYou recently joined this market with their own strategy combat titles released in the last three months.

KlickNation is a relatively small developer compared to other studios producing core strategy games. According to our AppData traffic tracking service, the developer at one point enjoyed 1.3 million monthly active users, and saw around 150,000 daily active users at its peak. Today, the developer sees 395,441 monthly active users and 49,022 daily active users.

ETA: Although we’re reasonably certain that EA is working on a companion social game for BioWare property Mass Effect 3, we don’t believe that KlickNation is working on that project. Given the console game’s March 2012 release window, it would be a very tight development cycle for a fully realized companion social game. BioWare also has a back catalog of IP to pull from (Baldur’s Gate, Jade Empire, etc.) to develop all-new social games.

AJ Glasser contributed to this story.