Lightspeed LA is Tencent’s new AAA gaming studio

Tencent challenges Amazon's Twitch, ventures into live video streaming

Tencent is moving west again as they establish Lightspeed LA. The new studio will work on potential AAA games for the company’s global audience.

Lightspeed LA is a part of the slow-moving Chinese juggernaut’s bid for the games industry. The massive Chinese conglomerate is creeping westward. It’s putting its roots around much of the game industry, in a bid to gain more control.

Tencent is taking over multiple western game studios and services. Its massive coffers are eating up shares, pushing itself deeper into the industry.

Tencent Holdings has a pervasive presence in the gaming industry

Tencent Holdings is on a shopping spree over the past decade. Their involvement in many different Western gaming studios is a well-oiled machinery. The company’s presence, even in the last few months, is palpable to everyone.


Before the new Los Angeles studio, the Chinese conglomerate has a few more ventures. The most recent is a move towards a live video streaming platform similar to Twitch. This pervasive maneuvering focuses on mobile streaming for a reason.

The new Trovo Live will focus on the mobile player experience first and foremost. This move is likely due to the mobile platform having the biggest, most accepting audience. They are also the fastest growing platform with very little care in data collection practices.

Earlier in May, Tencent also acquired the rights to the System Shock franchise. This acquisition piles this over the many game studios and storefronts under their belt. Ubisoft, Activision Blizzard, Epic, and Riot Games also have stakes from the Chinese corporation.

Rockstar vet to spearhead new Tencent studio

According to Reuters, a familiar name will spearhead lightspeed LA for Tencent. Rockstar vet Steve Martin will head the team under the Lightspeed & Quantum banner. The dev team will be in Orange County and is now getting talent from all over.

So far, the company is hiring talent from Rockstar, 2K Games, Insomniac, and Sony. “We’re ushering in a new era of game culture by combining world-class development with a stress-free work environment,” Martin said in the statement to Reuters.

This studio is Tencent’s second studio in Los Angeles, with TiMi Studios being first. TiMi Studios is under the leadership of Scott Warner from Halo 4. TiMi is the publisher for Arena of Valor and Call of Duty: Mobile.

Lightspeed LA does not have any projects at the moment, as predicted. They’re still at their talent building phase, so any talks for business will be premature. Even then, it’s interesting how far and deep the studio will go when it comes to its offerings.

Images courtesy of Chris Yunker/Flickr, Otherside Entertainment/YouTube Screenshot

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