AOL Shutting Down Joystiq and Massively

January 30, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

AOL is shutting down Joystiq and popular MMO sister site Massively. A report earlier in the day from Techcrunch indicated that parent company AOL planned on rolling the Joystiq brand back into tech site Engadget.

The news was confirmed today by Massively editor-in-chief Brianna Royce (in this blog post) and in a tweet from Joystiq News Content Director Alexander Sliwinski.

In his tweet, Sliwinski shared a LinkedIn staff list:

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Sega Sammy Announces Restructuring Plans, Mass Layoffs

January 30, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

Sega Sammy announced today that it will cut jobs and encourage several hundred employees to retire early as part of a restructuring plan to focus on "digital games. In a press release issued this morning, the company said that Sega of America's offices would be affected by layoffs and early retirements as it relocates its operations from San Francisco to South California in the coming months.

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Layoffs Hit Frontier Developments

January 26, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

Frontier Developments, the makers of Elite: Dangerous, have laid off a number of employees this week, according to this VG247 report. At least 15 employees have been laid off at developer’s Halifax, Canada studio, according to a new Investors update. In a section labeled "Operations Update," the company said that 15 content creation roles have been made redundant in Cambridge:

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Layoffs Hit Defy Media's The Escapist, GameTrailers, And GameFront

January 21, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

Defy Media has laid off a large amount of staff from three of its popular game-related properties: The Escapist, GameTrailers, and GameFront. An exact number of affected employees is unknown as of this writing, but we do know that The Escapist Editor-in-Chief Greg Tito is just one of many affected by this latest round of layoffs. In a post on Twitter, Tito announced that he and others had been laid off today:

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Devs Play Features John Romero Playing 'Doom'

January 21, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

The latest episode of Double Fine's video series, "Devs Play," features John Romero playing the classic first-person shooter that took over the PC gaming world way back in the 90s. The id Software co-founder who helped create Doom and Quake is joined by Doom history enthusiast and Spacebase creator JP LeBreton as they play through "Knee Deep in the Dead" in its entirety.

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Robotoki Closing Its Doors

January 21, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

Robert Bowling's studio Robotoki has closed. Bowling is the former Call of Duty Creative Strategist - he left Call of Duty developer Infinity Ward in 20102 to start his own company, but Robotoki has been having trouble for quite some time.

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Target To Close All 133 Retail Stores in Canada

January 15, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

Minneapolis-based retailer Target announced that it is getting out of the retail business in Canada and will be closing all of its 133 stores in the country. The company said that it has failed to connect with Canadian customers and that its holidays sales in the country were less than optimal.

Target Chairman and CEO Brian Cornell made the announcement on Target's website.

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Square Enix Closes Mobile Studio in Indonesia

January 14, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

Square Enix has shut down the mobile studio Smileworks in Indonesia - a mere 18 months after it opened its doors. The company confirmed in a statement to GII that all 14 of the people the small studio employed are now out of work as well. Square Enix opened the Surabaya, Java-based Smileworks studio 18 months ago in hopes of developing mobile game content for Indonesia. Apparently the studio did not live up to Square Enix's expectations.

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Report: Layoffs Hit Codemasters

January 9, 2015 - GamePolitics Staff

Eurogamer is reporting that a round of layoffs has hit UK racing game publisher Codemasters. Eurogamer says that sources have told them that around 50 jobs are "being reviewed," with a little over 30 of those jobs set to be eliminated as part of a 30 day consultation period. The company employs around 500 people worldwide.

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Rovio Cuts 110 Employees in Latest Round of Layoffs

December 4, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

While Angry Birds maker Rovio has moved forward with plans it announced last month to lay off a substantial number of workers, the company has apparently spared 20 employees from the cut backs. Originally Rovio announced that it would lay off 130 positions, but the company said that "employee negotiations" had lead to 110 jobs being cut.

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Report: Majesco in Financial Trouble

November 17, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

According to this Gamasutra report, Majesco and its indie publishing label Midnight City are in serious financial trouble. According to sources "inside and outside the company" and several SEC filings by the company in the last week, Majesco is having financial trouble and has laid off some of its staff.

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Robotoki Hit With Layoffs

November 14, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Indie game development studio Robotoki has been forced to lay off some of its staff after abandoning the free-to-play model for its upcoming game Human Element in favor of releasing the game as a "premium product." This drastic change has also forced the company to abandon its publishing deal with free-to-play publisher Nexon, which in turn has led to a round of layoffs, according to Gamasutra.

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Layoffs May Hit 'Transformers Universe' Development Team at Jagex

November 11, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

UK-based RuneScape and Transformers Universe studio Jagex has confirmed with GII that it is currently in a consultation process with members of its staff assigned to work on its Transformers Universe MMO game project. The company says that some of those staffers may secure new roles on other Jagex games, while others face layoffs.

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Report: Warner Bros. Prepares for Company-Wide Layoffs

November 5, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

According to a Game Informer report, Warner Bros. is making company-wide layoffs - and those layoffs will begin this week. A memo obtained by GI attributed to Warner Bros. CEO Kevin Tsujihara sent to employees reveals that layoffs are going to happen until the first quarter of 2015 in all divisions of the company.

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Report: Major Layoffs Hit NCsoft

October 24, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Layoffs have hit NCsoft's Carbine Studio in a major way, according to a report in Polygon, and while NCSoft has confirmed that the layoffs are real it will not say just how many employees have been affected. According to Polygon's reporting, at least 60 - 100 employees have been let go overall, with a good portion of those layoffs hitting WildStar maker Carbine.

NCSoft issued the following statement on the matter:

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Rovio To Cut 16 Percent Of Its Workforce

October 2, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Angry Birds developer Rovio says that it will have to cut 16 percent of its workforce. The company announced plans this week to downsize its staff by cutting around 130 jobs from its workforce in Finland. The cuts are apparently due to a lack of growth in recent months.

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Another Yogscast-Backed Developer Struggles With Financing

September 26, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

In the wake of the Yogscast-backed and Kickstarter-funded game Yogventures giving up the ghost and being canceled by developer Winterkewl Games, another Yogscast -backed developer was put forward to provide gamers who backed that other project some recompense. While the company still plans to do that, it looks like it is going through some short-term problems with funding that will in turn force it to lay off half of its staff.

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Microsoft Cuts an Additional 2,100 Employees From Global Workforce

September 19, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

In July of this year Microsoft announced that it would cut approximately 18,000 jobs from its global workforce by July 2015. At the time it made the announcement, it also laid off around 13,000 employees worldwide.

This week Microsoft cut an additional 2,100 from its global workforce, making the total number of cuts made this year reach 15,100. Between now and July of next year Microsoft will have to cut an additional 2,900 jobs. In July, prior to the layoffs, Microsoft had a global workforce of around 125,000 employees.

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Layoffs Hit ZeniMax Online

September 3, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

ZeniMax Online has laid off an undisclosed number of employees who were working on The Elder Scrolls Online, the company's MMO based loosely on the popular role-playing game series that includes such games as Oblivion and Skyrim.

While the layoffs were confirmed by Peter Hines, vice president of PR and marketing at Bethesda Softworks, the company did not disclose how many employees were let go, and whether those employees were full-time, part-time, or contractors.

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Report: TRC Family Media Considering Laying Off 90 Percent of Workforce

September 2, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Sources speaking to GamesIndustry International are telling the publication that Malta-based development studio TRC Family Media is in serious financial trouble. According to multiple sources inside the company, TRC's financial situation is so dire that it has told employees that 90 percent of the company's work force may be laid off.

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Another Round of Layoffs Hit Nintendo of Europe

August 29, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Nintendo of Europe has confirmed with Kotaku that around 320 of its employees will be laid off this week. That number includes around 130 full-time Nintendo of Europe employees, along with 190 temporary workers at Nintendo of Europe's Germany-based localization department. All 320 people will be unemployed by August 31, according to Kotaku.

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CCP Games Fire Two Executives, Closes San Francisco Office

August 28, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Update: A rep. for CCP Games informed us that CCP Games CFO Joe Gallo and CMO David Reid left the company voluntarily, and were not fired, as was previously reported.

Original Story: EVE Online maker CCP Games announced during its latest financial report that it is shutting down its San Francisco-based game development studio and letting two executives go. The news comes on the heels of the company reporting a downturn in year-over-year profits.

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Sucker Punch Hit With Layoffs

August 20, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

InFamous developer Sucker Punch has laid off an undetermined number of employees, according to what Sony Computer Entertainment America (the parent company of the studio), has told IGN UK.

SCEA would not give an exact number, but did confirm that there has been a "reduction in workforce." The company also did not disclose the reasoning behind the layoffs.

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Mastertronic Exiting Physical Retail Space, Laying Off 40 Percent of Workforce

July 31, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

GII reports that UK games publisher Mastertronic announced that it is being "forced" to apply for a Company Voluntary Agreement (CVA) to avoid catastrophe over outstanding loans. In addition, the company announced that it will be closing its Cambridge, England headquarters, exiting the physical retail business it has been involved in for decades, and laying off 40 percent of its workforce.

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Major Layoffs Hit GameSpot's Editorial Team

July 30, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Update: A CBS Interactive representative tells us that more than two people remain on GameSpot's U.S. editorial team, and that Eddie Makuch, a member of GameSpot's news team, is still with the company - he works out of the company's East Coast office. Crave Online reports that Jess McDonell, Danny O’Dwyer, Justin Haywald, Chris Watters, and Kevin VanOrd still work for GameSpot as of this writing.

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Report: Employees Left Crytek's U.S. Studio Last Week

July 30, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

This afternoon Crytek USA announced that it had closed its Texas-based development studio and moved the development of the free-to-play co-op shooter the studio was working on - Hunt: Horrors of the Guilded Age - to its headquarters in Frankfurt, Germany. Earlier in the day it was revealed that the company sold the Homefront franchise to Koch Media and had shut down its UK studio.

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Report: Game Developer Layoffs Rise in 2013

July 24, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

According to Gamasutra's Game Developer Salary Survey 2014 (PDF), layoffs were on the rise in 2013. This is in contrast to prior years where the number remained slightly down or close to flat. Around 14 percent of developers surveyed said they were laid off in 2013. That's up slightly by two percent from 2012.

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Microsoft Laying Off 18K Employees, Closing Xbox Entertainment Studios

July 17, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Update: Microsoft has confirmed that - as part of a major staff reduction - it will shut down Xbox Entertainment Studios. Xbox boss Phil Spencer confirmed the news to Xbox Entertainment Studios staff on Thursday in an email:

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Report: Microsoft Layoffs Will Hit Xbox Division

July 15, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

According to this Bloomberg report, Microsoft is planning to cut a number of jobs in its Xbox division as part of an overall restructuring plan. Two anonymous sources familiar with the situation have told Bloomberg that overall cuts could end up being the biggest number of layoffs since 2009 when the company laid off 5,800 employees.

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Airtight Confirms Closure

July 3, 2014 - GamePolitics Staff

Independent game development studio Airtight Games has confirmed via Twitter that it has officially gone out of business, but it did not provide any particular details on why the Redmond, Washington-based studio closed. Yesterday reports surfaced that the studios office were locked and a sign on the door indicated that the equipment inside the building was for sale.

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Wonderkarpgot my Reading Rainbow kickstarter rewards....I cant tell if this is a sticker or a bumper sticker.01/30/2015 - 5:38pm
Goth_SkunkAs such, the first playthrough is always going to be the most evocative.01/30/2015 - 3:47pm
Goth_SkunkSo while branching storyline is hallmarked as a feature of the game, the storyline never stays branched for too long. There is a linear story that may branch at points, but each branch always comes right back to the main line further down the road.01/30/2015 - 3:46pm
Goth_SkunkMy biggest gripe about it though would have to be that its replay value sucks. I quickly learned that apart from a few key decisions you make, most choices end up not being relevant because something terrible happens anyway.01/30/2015 - 3:45pm
Goth_SkunkI *love* The Walking Dead. Like I said, I played Season 1 through in one go, and subsequently pre-purchased Season 2 in its entirety sight-unseen.01/30/2015 - 3:43pm
Andrew EisenBy the by, I take it you're a fan of Telltale's Walking Dead? I'm one of the very few who really doesn't like it. Bums me out.01/30/2015 - 3:39pm
Andrew EisenI think we're safe with stuff like Life is Strange, Resident Evil: Revelations 2, and TellTale's games. I was thinking more along the lines of D4. It's genuinely up in the air whether we'll get a conclusion to that story or not.01/30/2015 - 3:33pm
Goth_SkunkUltimately, from this potentially ignorant perspective, it's the gamer who assumes the risk, not the developer. I don't approve. Fortunately, I'm only paying $5 (CDN, no less), so that's money I can easily write off if I'm disappointed.01/30/2015 - 3:32pm
Goth_SkunkIf I'm wrong, and the unthinkable should happen where the developer ends up aborting production of the rest of the episodes, bundle purchasers would be understandably upset. Even moreso if attempting to get a refund turns out to be a hassle.01/30/2015 - 3:30pm
Goth_SkunkThere is an option on XBL to purchase all episodes in a bundle. Pay full price now, get the rest of the episodes as they're released. I would like to think this means that the other episodes are in fact done and ready.01/30/2015 - 3:29pm
Andrew EisenCatch 22 sometimes. Some gamers don't want to buy it if there's no guarantee the whole thing will come out and the whole thing can't come out unless enough people buy the early installments.01/30/2015 - 3:17pm
Goth_SkunkI sincerely hope this trend towards episodic games is not done so because the developer only had enough capital to produce the first 1/5th of the story and is banking on making enough money from the sales of that fifth to produce the rest.01/30/2015 - 3:16pm
Goth_SkunkThat being said, I want to try Life is Strange to get my feet wet.01/30/2015 - 3:13pm
Andrew EisenI'm that way too. I'll wait until the whole thing is out. Same goes for DVDs of TV shows. I'll wait for the season set.01/30/2015 - 3:13pm
Goth_SkunkIf an episodic game is really good, and the time between episodes is more than a week, I'm more inclined to wait for the rest of the episodes to all come out than to try playing it episode by episode at launch date.01/30/2015 - 3:12pm
Goth_SkunkAs someone who played through TWD Season 1 entirely in one day, and then played Season 2 episode by episode when they each came out, I strongly agree with this sentiment.01/30/2015 - 3:11pm
Goth_SkunkFrom what I've been hearing, people haven't been buying it because they're sick of episodic games where they have to wait 6 weeks or more between episodes and they'd rather just wait for the whole thing to come out at once.01/30/2015 - 3:10pm
Andrew EisenNot sure what GamerGate could do to dissuade people from buying a game they'd otherwise be interested in or why it would even want to but I agree, I think the premise is interesting and look forward to learning more about how it actually plays.01/30/2015 - 2:58pm
Goth_SkunkAnd for what it's worth, I saw Life is Strange advertised today on XBL, and the premise looks very, very intriguing. I'm going to buy it today and give it a shot.01/30/2015 - 2:42pm
Goth_SkunkI'm hearing rumours that the recently released game Life is Strange is not selling very well on Steam, and that GamerGate is being blamed as a result. It's just a rumour though.01/30/2015 - 2:42pm
 

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