Telltale Games announced their closure today, laying off 250 employees and leaving behind a skeleton crew of 25 to work on “past obligations to partners.” (I hope to God this means finishing the Walking Dead, since I kind of bought a season pass for that… conflicting sources say it’s canceled after the second episode, but nothing official yet.)
Kind of scary that one of the most successful (if not most successful) interactive fiction/narrative game studios was not able to survive… By all reports, though, it seems they mismanaged their growth and took on way too many projects for the size of their studio. Lots of things are coming out about a toxic work environment and crunch culture. Crazy stuff!
Mixed feelings about the games, though of course it’s terrible that so many people lost their jobs. I really thought they were going out of control with too many projects, and that the quality was suffering. Game of Thrones, Guardians of the Galaxy, Walking Dead, all were problematic at best.
But then I played Batman, and thought it was probably the best thing they had ever done and absolutely up to the standards of their great stuff from 4-5 years ago. They haven’t been the same since some of their top people left to form Fullbright, but I thought they were finally getting back to it.
This seems sudden, but I haven’t kept up with gaming news in awhile, so maybe it’s been on the horizon. But it’s crazy that they still had so many coals in the fire and just go out of business like this.
It was extremely sudden. They just announced The Wolf Among Us 2 and Stranger Things (!!) a little while ago, but those are both cancelled now. If the current Walking Dead season might get cancelled before it’s even finished, it was definitely very sudden haha.
I agree, several games noticeably declined in quality after they took on too many IPs. It’s still such a shame though, they pioneered action-based/point-and-click narrative choice games for the mainstream!
Yea I saw this and was conflicted. I love the company and their games but they’ve been having some behind the curtains issues for some time. I read somewhere though that they were keeping a few employees to finish out the Walking Dead release, make sure it comes out correctly before they close their doors for good.
I just hope all the employees can find other jobs.
Wow, this really is incredibly disappointing. There have been a lot of valid criticisms leveled at their titles over the years, but nonetheless I was a really big fan of most of their series. It sucks to see a studio I had a lot of genuine love for go under like this.