Did The House of Fallout Just Buy *Another* Studio?

Bethesda (and parent company ZeniMax) has gone on a major shopping spree over the past few years, expanding far beyond Oblivion and Fallout, swallowing up the creators of Doom and Resident Evil. And it doesn't look like they're stopping there.

ZeniMax Media, the people who already own Bethesda Software, id Software, Arkane Studios and, most recently, Shinji Mikami's Tango Gameworks, looks like it might have grabbed a few big Swedish names by welcoming Machinegames to the family.

Who? They're ex-Starbreeze Studios, developers of The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay and The Darkness. Key Starbreeze staffers, including founder Magnus Högdahl, left the developer last year to set up Machinegames.

A quick mention by internet-sleuth-by-another-name "Veracious_Shit" pegged ZeniMax as the new owner of Högdahl's studio earlier this week, which appears to check out. According to Swedish business records, Machinegames is now officially registered as ZeniMax Sweden AB.

Machinegames hasn't said what its been working on for the past year, other than it's "a developer of exciting AAA titles for next-gen platforms."

That could be another good get for ZeniMax and Bethesda, speculation that the company has not confirmed. Numerous e-mails to Bethesda and Machinegames reps have gone unanswered. So we'll call it rumor for now.