Irrational Games shutting down

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#1 Edited by IgGy621985 (5211 posts) -

Well, WTF

"While I'm deeply proud of what we've accomplished together, my passion has turned to making a different kind of game than we've done before," Levine wrote. "To meet the challenge ahead, I need to refocus my energy on a smaller team with a flatter structure and a more direct relationship with gamers. In many ways, it will be a return to how we started: a small team making games for the core gaming audience."P

Levine's new goal: "To make narrative-driven games for the core gamer that are highly replayable. To foster the most direct relationship with our fans possible, we will focus exclusively on content delivered digitally."

More here.

Damn.

#2 Edited by nintendoboy16 (28392 posts) -

Well, s***! That freaking sucks.

#3 Posted by mems_1224 (49017 posts) -

Damn, sucks for all those people that lost their jobs

#4 Edited by shawn30 (4367 posts) -

Terrible to see. The gaming business is just hard, period. One game not hitting sales marks can almost cripple a company. Sad indeed.

#5 Posted by ghostwarrior786 (5811 posts) -

fuuuckkkkkkkkkkkkkk does this mean no more bioshock? someone answer please

#6 Posted by ninjapirate2000 (3279 posts) -

wtf?

#7 Posted by IgGy621985 (5211 posts) -

@ghostwarrior786 said:

fuuuckkkkkkkkkkkkkk does this mean no more bioshock? someone answer please

Probably not. Publisher has rights for the IP, but it's most likely new Bioshock games will suck.

#8 Edited by millerlight89 (18641 posts) -

Thats lame.well as long as ken is still here ill be okay

#9 Posted by flashn00b (3190 posts) -

Personally, I'm hoping that Levine's taking Freedom Force with him :x

#10 Posted by whatsazerg (236 posts) -

Well... this is certainly a surprise... I'm guessing Bioshock didn't have the financial success that was expected... that combined with Ken's desire to get back to basics and get away from big budget publishers controlling too much of your vision is probably what led to this... again... just my guess.

#11 Posted by finalfantasy94 (27000 posts) -

Aw lame these are the bioshock people. I like those games.

#12 Posted by bobbetybob (19307 posts) -
@shawn30 said:

Terrible to see. The gaming business is just hard, period. One game not hitting sales marks can almost cripple a company. Sad indeed.

That's the reason behind this, it's Levines decision since he's one of the owners and it seems like he wants to start a smaller team. Seems strange to completely close the studio but it sounds like they're giving the team a lot of support to get new jobs at other companies so that's nice.

#13 Edited by Wasdie (50849 posts) -

Out of the blue but not as surprising as you think. We all know Bioshock Infinite went through absolute dev hell and had a lot of issues with people leaving. I feel like the studio's internal structure wasn't all that sound.

A lot of devs have moved to smaller studios. CliffyB, Molyneux, and Miyamoto are all working with smaller, more focused studios. Tech today has advanced to a point where small studios can do AAA level games as long as they pay a pretty penny for the tech.

#14 Posted by uninspiredcup (13645 posts) -

My friends, this isn't bad. The man can just use kickstarter and will easily raise money
(for a pc game that doesn't suck like Bioshock).

#15 Posted by donalbane (16379 posts) -

He has worked for other development houses and made fine products regardless of who he's with, so unless he's retiring, I don't see this announcement as particularly terrible. I mean, it's sad on some level... but mostly for the people who worked there.

#16 Posted by nishanth12 (528 posts) -

Shit the saddest new I've heard all week :|

#17 Posted by finalstar2007 (26159 posts) -

Does that mean Bioshock didnt do well for them? or could it be something completely different that affected them?

this really sucks

#18 Posted by jhonMalcovich (5536 posts) -

More Indie games for PC.

#19 Posted by gameofthering (10517 posts) -

Well that is disappointing news.

#21 Edited by ReadingRainbow4 (16731 posts) -

Well Infinite did suck, but he shouldn't just give up.

#22 Posted by hoosier7 (4065 posts) -

I'm not disappointed like you guys, i have a feeling he'll be trying to pull those around him into this new start up.

Seems like the suits at the top might have been giving them grief in the development process off those quotes.

#23 Edited by clyde46 (47840 posts) -

@finalstar2007 said:

Does that mean Bioshock didnt do well for them? or could it be something completely different that affected them?

this really sucks

As Wasdie said, Infinite went through dev hell and it seemed to rip the heart from the team.

#24 Posted by LostProphetFLCL (17793 posts) -

Well that blows. Absolutely LOVE Infinite!

Guess I will just have to wait and see what Levine does next. I feel like he has a great creative mind and really want to see what other great games he can get made.

#25 Posted by seanmcloughlin (38219 posts) -

Sucks for people losing jobs and the studio closing but it's not as bad as the title made me think

A smaller team making a more focused game would be wonderful. Infinite had a lot of ups and downs and had to compromise so it didn't lose a tonne of money

#26 Posted by Animal-Mother (27167 posts) -

http://www.irrationalgames.com/ here's a link to the letter.

As a fellow queens boy I hope levine keeps on truckin.

#27 Edited by bbkkristian (14967 posts) -

That sucks. I hope they all find jobs... :(

#28 Posted by Snugenz (12919 posts) -

That sucks balls.

#29 Posted by m_machine024 (15235 posts) -

Damn that's sad to hear.

#30 Posted by lamprey263 (26179 posts) -

maybe they just don't need the large staff anymore since they no longer have to cater to the PS3's special needs

#31 Posted by Salt_The_Fries (10422 posts) -

I hope they'll restructure somehow. Irrational Games are an iconic brand after all. Pity about those people, they lost Doug Church who was their most talented guy to Valve some years ago and now this...

#32 Edited by seanmcloughlin (38219 posts) -

Yikes, shots fired. From a double fine dev and former irrational employee

https://twitter.com/vectorpoem/status/435838769510350848

#33 Posted by coasterguy65 (6382 posts) -

Checks calender to see if it is April 1st....nope.....aw shit...W.T.F. Ken?

#34 Posted by Boddicker (3314 posts) -

Meh

#35 Posted by Bigboi500 (31647 posts) -

The scale and budget for these games need a major overhall. Tomb Raider is another big project that almost ruined a developer, and dev after dev last gen couldn't get high enough sales to make a profit and stay afloat.

You don't have to go from blockbuster to indie, just keep it reasonable. Try some imagination and originality in your games instead of just relying on explosions and holly wood action scenes to get by.

#36 Posted by KingsofQueens (2266 posts) -

@Animal-Mother said:

http://www.irrationalgames.com/ here's a link to the letter.

As a fellow queens boy I hope levine keeps on truckin.

Queens NY? Me too, man!

Anyway, sad news indeed. I never thought Irrational Games were THAT in trouble. Bioshock games were incredible in my opinion.

#37 Edited by Bread_or_Decide (19127 posts) -

I'm shocked at how misunderstood this news has become. Whatever he wants to do next won't require such a big dev team. So he has to lay people off. I really dig the steps he's taking to help those people out.

It's clear he's taking a page from Double Fine's Tim Schaefer. Smaller, less risky games are the way to go.

And this decision doesn't seem to be based on the industry or on Bioshock Infinite's sales. (A game which sold incredibly well btw.)

#38 Edited by Sushiglutton (5634 posts) -

Well most people said they liked the first hour of BS:I best so I suppose what Levine will do is to make a full game like that. Meh to me, great news for all the hipsters.

#39 Posted by Gue1 (11607 posts) -

they made some of the best games of last gen but still were forced to shut-down?

#40 Posted by bobbetybob (19307 posts) -

#41 Edited by Heil68 (48480 posts) -

It's kind of refreshing actually. 3 games in a series and move on to something else. It does suck people loosing their jobs, but Kevin has to follow his dreams,

#42 Edited by Cyberdot (3926 posts) -

Wow, that was unexpected!

Seems that big budget games aren't really the way to go these days. To be honest, I've had more fun with games that are built with low budget.

#43 Edited by FoxbatAlpha (9491 posts) -

We have truly lost a gaming giant today.

#44 Posted by texasgoldrush (9569 posts) -

This studio was already bleeding talent and most of the writers that were great for Bioshock already left. Jordan Thomas who did Bioshock 2 and the Minerva's Den team were already gone.

The Minerva's Den team would later go and do Gone Home.

However, Ken Levine is as big of an egomaniac as Richard Garriot, Kojima, David Cage, etc.

#45 Posted by seanmcloughlin (38219 posts) -

@Bread_or_Decide said:

I'm shocked at how misunderstood this news has become. Whatever he wants to do next won't require such a big dev team. So he has to lay people off. I really dig the steps he's taking to help those people out.

It's clear he's taking a page from Double Fine's Tim Schaefer. Smaller, less risky games are the way to go.

And this decision doesn't seem to be based on the industry or on Bioshock Infinite's sales. (A game which sold incredibly well btw.)

and yet someone at Double Fine called him a "Toxic Egomaniac"

#46 Edited by lostrib (44099 posts) -

You guys do realize that Irrational Games is shutting down, but Levine is still going to be working for the same company just with a smaller team

#47 Edited by Animal-Mother (27167 posts) -

@seanmcloughlin said:

Yikes, shots fired. From a double fine dev and former irrational employee

https://twitter.com/vectorpoem/status/435838769510350848

What a tit. Wasn't irrational levines studio. I mean the man can do what he wants. He's made some heavyweights and now it's time to shed the fat and focus on what he wants too. It's called life. Also it doesn't help he continues to cry like a little bitch on twitter.

#48 Edited by aroxx_ab (11059 posts) -

This is good, Bioshock Infinite sucked. Better work on something new, hope it is something good this time :D

#49 Edited by jg4xchamp (51499 posts) -

@Animal-Mother said:

@seanmcloughlin said:

Yikes, shots fired. From a double fine dev and former irrational employee

https://twitter.com/vectorpoem/status/435838769510350848

What a tit. Wasn't irrational levines studio. I mean the man can do what he wants. He's made some heavyweights and no it's time to shed the fat and focus on what he wants too. It's called life. Also it doesn't help he continues to cry like a little bitch on twitter.

This is what he means. Apologists will swear by this guy for his influence. Let's not kid ourselves. He made everyone go through dev hell, because it took him 5 years to finally make up his mind on shit. After that realized the current model isn't best suited for the type of games he is making. So out of sheer boredom guts his own studio. Which yes, big business, he gets to do what he wants.

But lets be real about what he did. He didn't lay off anybody. He out right fired everyone so he could do a whole new business model. That's a shit load of people losing their jobs on Levine's word. That guy didn't diss the guys ability. He dissed the person for his ego. And that's totally justified. It was a douche move(albeit prudent from a business standpoint) on Levine's part.

The perception that Levin is happily pitching is that this was a Take 2 move. Reality? All Levine.

#50 Edited by Bread_or_Decide (19127 posts) -

@jg4xchamp said:

@Animal-Mother said:

@seanmcloughlin said:

Yikes, shots fired. From a double fine dev and former irrational employee

https://twitter.com/vectorpoem/status/435838769510350848

What a tit. Wasn't irrational levines studio. I mean the man can do what he wants. He's made some heavyweights and no it's time to shed the fat and focus on what he wants too. It's called life. Also it doesn't help he continues to cry like a little bitch on twitter.

This is what he means. Apologists will swear by this guy for his influence. Let's not kid ourselves. He made everyone go through dev hell, because it took him 5 years to finally make up his mind on shit. After that realized the current model isn't best suited for the type of games he is making. So out of sheer boredom guts his own studio. Which yes, big business, he gets to do what he wants.

But lets be real about what he did. He didn't lay off anybody. He out right fired everyone so he could do a whole new business model. That's a shit load of people losing their jobs on Levine's word. That guy didn't diss the guys ability. He dissed the person for his ego. And that's totally justified. It was a douche move(albeit prudent from a business standpoint) on Levine's part.

The perception that Levin is happily pitching is that this was a Take 2 move. Reality? All Levine.

The support for those being laid off is pretty good. If the next project can't support such a large staff, what else can he do? I mean really why is it douchey? Should he just make Bioshock 3 to keep everyone employed even if his heart isn't in the project? He gave them solid work for quite a few years. The game was a success. And a new business model is his decision and doesn't make him a douche.

Good grief you people...i can't believe the way gamers perceive the real world to be sometimes.