EA considering closure of Harry Potter developer

Bright Light studio in danger of being shuttered in effort to reduce development costs and centralize development across EA's UK operations.


EA Bright Light Guildford, the studio behind recent Harry Potter film adaptations, Create, and the Hasbro line of licensed board game adaptations, may be on its way out.

Harry Potter has wrapped, and it appears so too has EA Bright Light.
Harry Potter has wrapped, and it appears so too has EA Bright Light.

Originally reported by GamesIndustry.biz, an EA spokesperson confirmed for GameSpot that a "formal consultation process" with employees regarding the closure of operations has begun, with a portion of the personnel being considered for positions in other EA studios in the UK.

This proposed change would be in order to "centralize development on future projects, reduce development costs, and allow for better knowledge and talent sharing within the organization."

EA opened its Guildford-based studio in 1995 under the name EA UK (in 2007, it was renamed EA Bright Light). With the acquisition of the Peter Molyneux-cofounded Bullfrog Productions in 1995, the studio inherited a catalog of classic titles like Populous, Dungeon Keeper, Syndicate, and Theme Park.

The studio later shifted its focus to creating games for younger audiences and family-oriented entertainment. These include EA's film adaptations for J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter franchise, which have generally received a tepid critical response. The closure of the Bright Light studio would leave Criterion as EA's only UK-based development house.

Earlier this month, Codemasters also targeted its Guildford-based studio for closure. That operation's most recent project was the futuristic shooter Bodycount, which received a lackluster critical reception.

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