Report: Razorworks closing down

<em>Develop</em> magazine says the Empire Interactive-owned UK developer behind Ford Racing: Off Road, Pipemania revival has told staffers to start packing up.

The last remaining internal development studio of Empire Interactive is set to close, reports Develop magazine. According to sources, 30 staff members were told yesterday that, due to financial reasons, the studio would be shuttering in the near future.

Razorworks was founded in 1996, and Empire Interactive acquired the company in 2000. Games that have come from the Oxford, UK-based studio include Ford Racing Off Road, the Xbox Live version of Double Dragon, and Enemy Engaged: Apache Havoc. Most recently, it announced that it would be resurrecting puzzle game Pipemania onto a variety of modern platforms, and that a "major new IP Wii title" had been green-lit and was currently in preproduction.

Ironically, the company's Web site currently proclaims it is looking for extra staff for "key positions for this game and future titles." Empire Interactive was taken over by Silverstar Holdings in November 2006.

A spokesperson for Empire Interactive gave the following statement to GameSpot: "Empire Interactive can today confirm that it has begun consultation regarding the future of internal development studio, Razorworks. At this time we can only confirm that we are currently talking to a number of studios regarding the future of Razorworks, with the aim of finding the best solution for the studio and its staff. In the meantime Razorworks will continue to work towards delivering their current product range. Empire Interactive would like to stress that there will be no other changes within the company."

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Discussion

31 comments
KingOfOdanata
KingOfOdanata

Never heard of Razorworks. It would be interesting if they were able to finish this game and it ended up being a hit. I hope all goes well for there employees.

Chief_Kuuni
Chief_Kuuni

that's too bad, but it's life it happens. Wish everyone the best in that company on what they move onto next

Megavideogamer
Megavideogamer

Other than Double Dragon, I've never heard of Razorworks games. Even if I saw them in the discount bin they would have been passed on.

jknight5422
jknight5422

I wonder if they'll give a discount for Double Dragon on XBL...hmmm.

F0ZZY
F0ZZY

Rest in peace Razorworks

combatsoldier
combatsoldier

razor has helped out on many games but they always get put in the backseat when other companies are involved in it as well. this is messed up, they were a good company.

darkfox101
darkfox101

LoL i have the game apache havoc.. that game is SO OLD

Kez1984
Kez1984

Never heard of them. But still....sad

ldonyo
ldonyo

One look at the titles they released tells you this was long overdue.

masterchief375
masterchief375

Who on earth is Razorworks?? Never heard of them before.

ColdfireTrilogy
ColdfireTrilogy

This has nothing to do with EA, its more of an economy issue. The US dollar is weak and becuase historically the dollar has been a very strong competitor many companies who had American investments or were banking on making X amount of dollars with their title release are suddenly making far smaller profit returns. I mean the dollar is very fragile right now relatively speaking. For example lets say a game is developed in Canada by Ubisoft. Now typically when a game is developed in Canada and shipped in the US a $59.99 sale of a game registered as lets say $90 Canadian dollars after currency conversion.... well now all the sudden the Canadian looney is worth more than the dollar so when they sell a game for 59.99 they will not be making 90 Canadian dollars but instead more like 50 .... when you put that in terms of a hundred thousand copies or more sold it turns out to be quite a big impact on sales which can lead to smaller publishers loosing money and eventually closing their doors.

Lum_Yatsura
Lum_Yatsura

Don't know who Razorworks is. But Empire Interactive has been involved in some way with pretty fun stuff. Like the Flatout games, Taito Legends, Bubble Bobble Old & New, etc.

stygiansanity
stygiansanity

people who claim that it's because of EA and such are wrong. If the company made good games, it would exist. Problem is acquiring the funds to make a great game, but money can't make bad developers suddenly good developers.

cosmostein77
cosmostein77

I consider this to be a culling of sorts, Bad development studios that but out bad games are going away.

InuHanyou1701
InuHanyou1701

Not that I've ever heard of this developer before but I have to say "God ANOTHER developer is shutting it's doors?! I thought the gaming industry wasn't being affected too badly by the recession!"

Henninger
Henninger

Never heard of these people so who cares.

bhone17
bhone17

Is this supposed to be a bad thing?

kos1085
kos1085

And the industry just keeps getting smaller.

Bodboy466
Bodboy466

I guess I only have one question at this time: Who?

markharris31
markharris31

@Alastes Yes, you're right. They're being shut out by companies that make good games instead of the crap Razorworks has released.

IsaacMG
IsaacMG

Ford Racing = Best game ever [/irony]

akiwak
akiwak

Small studios cannot live out there unless yo keep the team small. Take a look at the studio that made Stubbs the Zombie. The business models have to change or else mergers are the only way to keep things running.

Sins-of-Mosin
Sins-of-Mosin

Wow, what a strong line up. Ford Racing was the suck.

Alastes
Alastes

Just another small studio getting shut out by the likes of EA and other major gaming companies