God of War PSP studio axes 13

Ready at Dawn sends staffers packing months before Ghost of Sparta release; blames cutbacks on nature of being an indie shop.

In May, Sony revealed God of War: Ghost of Sparta would return the ultraviolent mythological series to the PSP. The studio behind the project is Ready at Dawn, the independent studio behind the first God of War title for Sony's portable, Chains of Olympus. (The studio also handled the Wii port of Capcom's Okami.)

Ghost of Sparta isn't out until the fall, but Ready at Dawn is already reducing staff.

Although Ghost of Sparta won't be released until this fall, the Irvine, California-based Ready at Dawn is already making the sort of staff cuts that usually follow the completion of a project. In an announcement on its official Web site, the company lamented the move, which it says is the nature of the indie-development beast.

"Most days we feel privileged to do what we do. Some days not so much. Today just plain sucks," read the post. "We've spent the majority of our time at RAD hiring the best and most talented people to join our team. Today, we had to let go of 13 of these people because we simply couldn't keep them on board while one project finishes and another ramps up. Unfortunately, these are the woes of being independent…"

Due out "later this year," Ghost of Sparta will feature an all-new storyline set between the PlayStation 2 games God of War and God of War II. It will follow the series' protagonist, the ruthless Spartan warrior Kratos, as he assumes the reins of power as the Greek god of war after killing the previous title-holder, Ares. Over the course of the game, various parts of Kratos' backstory will be revealed, including the origins of his scar and tattoo.

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