Electronic Arts to Buy Seattle-Based PopCap Games for $1 Billion, Sources Say

Rumor has it that local video-game maker PopCap Games (Plants vs Zombies, Bejeweled 3) is about to bought for a whopping $1 billion. That's billion. With a B.

But until late last night, no one knew who the buyer was.

Now it would seem we have an answer: Electronic Arts.

TechCrunch first broke the news of the seemingly impending buyout. They noted that Zynga had been snooping around the deal for some time, but also that the asking price of $1 billion may have been too rich.

The other rumored buyer, EA, was also talked about.

We asked both companies for comment and got the cold shoulder.

But last night TechCrunch reported again that "sources" have told them that EA is the big-bucks buyer.

Possible logic behind the deal: Electronic Arts has some successful franchises that cater to casual users (including The Sims), but many of its successful properties appeal to the hardcore crowd. This is problematic on mobile, where iOS's top grossing apps are dominated by Angry Birds, Zynga, Pocket Gems, and other casual games. PopCap could help with that--their arsenal of games includes Bejeweled and Plants vs Zombies, each of which is a powerhouse in mobile and casual gaming.

All this sorta makes me a bit angry with my mother. "Quit playing video games and go outside!" she'd tell me as a kid.

Well, Mom, perhaps if I'd kept playing Legend of Zelda all those Saturdays instead of baseball (which got me nowhere), I'd be selling a video-game startup for one billion friggin dollars too.

(but probably not)

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