Nintendo has acquired Next Level Games, the makers of Luigi's Mansion 3 on Nintendo Switch, the company stated in a recent press meet. Vancouver-based Next Level has delivered seven titles published by Nintendo, going back to Super Mario Strikers for the GameCube in 2005. Next Level Games, founded in the year 2002, has developed several games such as 2009's Punch-Out!! Reboot for the Wii, and 2013's Luigi's Mansion: Dark Moon for the 3DS.
A statement from Nintendo said that "several owner-directors [of Next Level] recently determined that the time is right for them to sell their shares." The company expects a closer relationship with the studio to deliver an anticipated improvement in development speed, game flexibility, and quality. Nintendo says the deal will close by March 1.
Next Level's Luigi's Mansion 3, which launched October 31, 2019, was a critical and commercial success, selling 7.83 million copies worldwide as of November. Next Level also won awards for Luigi's Mansion 3 at The Game Awards 2019, the DICE Awards, and BAFTA's Games Awards in 2020. Vancouver studio moves in-house after a decade of developing for Nintendo.