Blitz Games Studios closing down

United Kingdom-based TV and movie game developer behind Epic Mickey 2 shutting doors after 23 years in business; 175 people to be let go.

Blitz Games Studios--the United Kingdom-based developer behind numerous games based on TV and movie franchises--is closing down after 23 years. Founded in 1990, Blitz Games Studios encompassed divisions including Blitz Games, Blitz Arcade, and Volatile Games.

Blitz Games Studios collaborated with Junction Point Studios on Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two and ported the game to the PlayStation Vita.

In a statement today, Blitz Games Studios said it has ceased trading and that 175 developers had been let go. Of note, 50 of those 175 people will form a new studio to work on two of the developer's financially self-sustaining projects. More details will be released shortly.

"We have managed to weather numerous storms over the last two decades that have sadly seen the demise of many of our friends and colleagues across the industry, but the run of problems we've had to face over the last year is unlike any we've seen before," Blitz Games Studios cofounder and CEO Philip Oliver said. "Frustrations with clients, the global economic crisis, and more than our fair share of simple bad luck have all conspired against us and we are no longer able to continue trading."

Oliver said Blitz Games Studios management has "done all that we can do" to keep the company solvent, including coming "frustrating close" to having "major clients" sign on to commit investment for "significant" projects.

Written By

Eddie Makuch is a news editor at GameSpot, and would like to see the Whalers return to Hartford.

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Discussion

26 comments
Leboyo56
Leboyo56

You know, I was really hoping for the Epic Mickey series to take off and to possibly even bring back 3D platformers as a mainstream genre. So the fact that Junction Point had expressed consistently throughout development of the first game about how dedicated they were to and how much time was being spent on the game only for the series to rather disastrously flop, on top of both developers of the two entries getting shut down has left me kind of speechless. I haven't played the second, but I still eventually intend on renting or buying it for the Vita so I can have my say on it and to send the once-promising series off. Hope I'll be able to take enough pity on it to look past some of its flaws. 

Thanatos2k
Thanatos2k

I suspect they were already in trouble before Epic Mickey 2, but that certainly didn't help!

Avenger1324
Avenger1324

It's a shame that a company folds after such a long time, but honestly I couldn't name a single game they had made - looked them up on wiki, and even then didn't recognise most of their titles.

And that's from someone in the UK whose been gaming 25+ years :(

AlexFili
AlexFili

Shame about the state of UK games companies. They're all in London now with a few exceptions

b74kd3th
b74kd3th

I'm surprised anyone works in this industry

WantYouBad
WantYouBad

...Are they the ones who made those Blitz football games for the N64? Those games were awesome....

ecurl143
ecurl143

I feel for the staff as I've been through a very similar situation last year.

It's a very hard thing to get through and the disruption to your life is more than can be said here in a few words.

The very best of luck to those affected.

mucking_foron
mucking_foron

My eyes aren't that good. I thought I read Blizz! lol too bad

punksterdaddy
punksterdaddy

This is very sad news, even if you are not a fan of their work. They were in the business for 23 years and now have to let 175 staff go. While only 50 of that number will go on to do other things.

It is never comfortable reading these things.

fadersdream
fadersdream

I hate it when great studios are shut down and fantastic games are no longer made...

this however is not that, everything will be fine.

amaneuvering
amaneuvering

It's a pity but if they'd just made better Mickey games, nailing standard core 3D game design elements like the camera, we might not be reading such news about the company shutting down.

TheEveryMan
TheEveryMan

Another UK games developer gone down the toilet. Well, I guess nobody gives a damn, especially the Americans who haven't even heard of Blitz Games Studios.

aidsta
aidsta

Man, I work just down the road from this studio.. I feel for those being let go.. Good luck to you all.

19James89
19James89

It's always sad when a games developers goes out of business, but I can see plenty more developers going out of business as the industry train rolls on.

GSGuy321
GSGuy321

Another sign that the casual gamer has fallen away. 

The casuals are on tablets. The hardcore are on PC. 

The NG consoles will fight over the middle.

Rattlesnake_8
Rattlesnake_8

They made a game no one bought, then made a sequel to that game and *surprise* no one bought that either.

EasyComeEasyGo
EasyComeEasyGo

Why in the world would they make a Mickey game that nobody ask and spend Millions of Dollars to make? Blitz games Studios was deadweight anyways.

Karchy
Karchy

OK, they basically fired 125 people and got rid of any depts. Smart move

krystyla
krystyla

How stupid do you have to be to port a underperforming game to an underperforming console.

b74kd3th
b74kd3th

That was midway they went under and were bought by Warner interactive

dchanland
dchanland

@ecurl143 Yeah, I know this feeling too, I was also on a similar boat.

After such a long journey is really sad seeing a companies shutting down, but life goes on, and maybe the former employees follow the example of those 50 lucky ones, and start to make their own games, maybe with more creative freedom and new great titles come from that... anyway, I feel bad for them too.

b74kd3th
b74kd3th

Ported it to the Wii u also

Setho10
Setho10

@krystyla If that is the only job you can get? Not very stupid. Porting is thankless but paying work a company can take on while they try to secure funding for other projects. A lot of studios do porting work for years before they start creating their own games or in between creating games. I'm sure they didn't expect a ton of royalties. They were doing it to keep afloat.