With a surprise move Electronic Arts has acquired Codemaster, English software house behind Drift and Formula 1 games. The company was also in the sights of Take-Two, whose offer however proved insufficient.

EA's offer amounts to about 1,2 billion dollars, exorbitant figure but above all higher than that offered by Take-Two of about 300 million dollars. The news already leaked on Sunday, before EA's confirmation came this morning.

Take-Two was in talks with Codemasters since a month, and the negotiation seemed destined to go through. Only EA's last-minute entry blew the deal.

Codemasters' board of directors says they are happy with the deal, and optimistic about the impact EA will have in developing their games. On the other side Electronic Arts has completed an operation that could bring it back to the center of the car racing video game market.