Kingdoms of Amalur dev misses payroll

Rhode Island government says 38 Studios is making overdue loan payment even as employees go without pay.

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38 Studios is making up its missed loan payment, but apparently at the expense of its employees. According to Providence, Rhode Island-based news outlet WPRI, the Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning developer is submitting a $1.125 million loan payment it missed, but told the state's Economic Development Corporation that it was unable to pay its employees as scheduled.

This was one Reckoning 38 Studios was unprepared for.
This was one Reckoning 38 Studios was unprepared for.

The debt in question dates back to 2010, when the EDC secured a controversial $75 million in loans to entice 38 Studios--founded by former Major League Baseball pitcher Curt Schilling--to relocate from Massachusetts to the Ocean State. According to the WPRI report, 38 Studios employed 379 employees full-time as of mid-March.

The EDC board yesterday held an emergency meeting to discuss whether to provide additional assistance to 38 Studios to keep the company in business. While the board made no ruling on the matter, it is expected to consider the topic again on Monday. 38 Studios employees aren't the only ones being hurt by the company's situation. Yesterday, EDC executive director Keith Stokes, who helped structure the $75 million loan, resigned from his post.

Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning is the first title from 38 Studios. Designed with the help of R.A. Salvatore, Todd McFarlane, and Ken Rolston, the action role-playing game received a positive critical reception upon release in February and sold 330,000 copies in the United States across the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC, according to NPD data. Additionally, a sequel is in the works.

As of press time, a 38 Studios representative had not responded to a request for comment.

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