Report: Sega hits kill switch on Rally Revo studio

[UPDATE] Publisher's Solihull, England-based internal development house reportedly joins string of other outfits hauled off to junkyard.

50 Comments

In the first two months of this year, the gaming industry outperformed analysts' already ambitious double-digit growth expectations by a significant margin. However, as the industry on the whole defies economic slowdown, it has left a trail of carved-out hulks in its wake. Since the beginning of the year, high-profile studios such as Perpetual Entertainment, Iron Lore Entertainment, Stormfront Studios, Castaway Entertainment, and Pseudo Interactive have all run aground.

Today, one more studio joins those littering the wayside. UK trade magazine Develop reports today that Sega's internal Solihull, England-based Racing Studio has been shut down, effective immediately. Sega gave no reason for the closure, and had not responded to GameSpot's request for comment as of press time. It was also unclear whether Sega would be pink-slipping the studio's workforce or reassigning staff to other studios within the company.

Founded in 2005 and led by former Codemasters studio director Guy Wilday, Sega Racing Studio has been credited on only one project, 2007's Sega Rally Revo for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC. Although respectably received, the game has sold a mere 44,000 units in the US across all platforms through February, according to the NPD Group. Sega Rally Revo was Sega's first outing on current-generation consoles for the classic arcade racing series.

[UPDATE] Following today's report, Sega confirmed to GameSpot that Sega Rally Revo's poor performance did indeed play a part in the studio's closure. "Regrettably Sega today announced that it is to commence consultation regarding the unfortunate closure of the Sega Racing Studio in Birmingham, UK," said Sega in a statement. "The decision is part of a review of Sega's Western Development Studios to ensure that each studio is a profitable entity in its own right, and unfortunately the Sega Racing Studio’s five-year plan would not result in a successful return for the Sega business moving forward. Sega would like to stress that there will be no changes within their other internal development studios."

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PollutedPlayboy

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......Well, when it comes to racing games, Japan-based Sega Rosso did way too much better than SRS.

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LindBergh2007

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yboucher, I know about Sega Of America's marketing problems. Don't assume that Sega Rally Revo didn't sell because of marketing problems, it didn't sell because the "Sega Rally" series has never been popluar. It's one of the most underrated racing franchises of all time probably because it was overlooked on the Saturn. Speaking of SEGA having bad marketing besides it's "welcome to the Next level and SE-GA! scream" what about "Segata Sanshiro" in Japan? it brought the Saturn on the map! What about "It's thinking?" for Dreamcast? It was one of the most popluar ad campaigns for SEGA. The only reason SOA stopped showing alot of ads is because they were running out of money. And drangel_jam, the reason why most of these titles haven't sold big, is because they aren't well known. The Virtua Fighter series has NEVER gotten attention outside of Japan, probably because the 32X version sucked so bad, it was practicly ignored on the Saturn here in the U.S. and the arcade market was already dead in the west. Vf5 doesn't belong on 360 and PS3, it belongs on a SEGA console because that's where it true calling is at. Once Sega releases VF5 on it's own console in Japan. it would push Sega's console ahead of it's competitors there. As for Otogi and Condemmed they fare much better in Japan because they are much more known out there. In the U.S. it's the fact that SEGA doesn't have the arm that western competitors have that make it harder for them outside of Sonic, deep down, people feel that SEGA should be producing a console not developing solid overlooked titles henceforth is why they should and they WILL reenter the console market. As for this developer, it's no big deal. They're not even known by anyone.

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LindBergh2007

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yboucher, And drangel_jam, the reason why most of these titles haven't sold big, is because they aren't well known. The Virtua Fighter series has NEVER gotten attention outside of Japan, probably because the 32X version sucked so bad, it was practicly ignored on the Saturn here in the U.S. and the arcade market was already dead in the west. Vf5 doesn't belong on 360 and PS3, it belongs on a SEGA console because that's where it true calling is at. Once Sega releases VF5 on it's own console in Japan. it would push Sega's console ahead of it's competitors there. As for Otogi and Condemmed they fare much better in Japan because they are much more known out there. In the U.S. it's the fact that SEGA doesn't have the arm that western competitors have that make it harder for them outside of Sonic, deep down, people feel that SEGA should be producing a console not developing solid overlooked titles henceforth is why they should and they WILL reenter the console market. As for this developer, it's no big deal. They're not even known by anyone.

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yboucher

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Sega Rally Revo just came in amidst too fierce competition... Forza 2, PGR4, Dirt..... it didn't have much of a chance... :-( As for "They just don't seam to have adapted to the new ways of hyping their games and actually getting people to buy them. " That's wrong. Sega has never been able to market properly, EVER. EXCEPT during that "Welcome to the next level" period around '92-93. But everything before and after that... Sega could never do proper marketing to save their lives, literally.

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yboucher

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Sega Rally Revo just came in amidst too fierce competition... Forza 2, PGR4, Dirt..... it didn't have much of a chance... :-(

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hitomo

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hm ... maybe someone drops around a corner and gives " a bunch of money" to them ...

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mysterylobster

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I feel bad for those developers. If they were given the chance, I'd bet they wouldn't choose to do an update to a 12 year-old arcade game.

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LordelX

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I had to choose between Sega Rally Revo and DiRT. I chose DiRT. Sega Rally Revo is a respectable game, but it just didn't do enough new. Oh well. I'll always be fond of the Dreamcast version of Sega Rally 2.

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drangel_jam

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LindBergh2007 said, "LEAVE SEGA ALONE" --> it reminds me of the new South Park episode, about Canada on Stirke, with the internet personalities, and that dude saying "LEAVE BRITNEY ALONE! LEAVER HER ALONE!!!" LOL

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drangel_jam

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If Sega Rally Revo hasn't even cracked 250K units is due to Sega poor publishing skills lately. Sega does a very poor job marketing games. Games like Otogi, Virtua Fighter 5, Sega Rally Revo, Universe at War, and Condemned 2 should have sold/be selling a lot more units. They just don't seam to have adapted to the new ways of hyping their games and actually getting people to buy them. I used to love Sega, it's sad to say it, but some studios and titles are just better of outside the Sega umbrella.

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Nintendo_Man

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A top quality true multi-plat Daytona game would have saved them. Also a new Outrun.

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ObiKKa

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They made a fatal mistake - Sega Rally Revo was just too arcadey, and not challenging enough. Besides, Iron Lore & Stormfront just shouldn't have been closed down... Oh, so sad!

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atomD21

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digitalpro, I'm right there with you about Gran Turismo. I just can't get into that game. I guess I like my racers a little more arcadey. I just wish a new Rallisport game would come out...

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suprsolider

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Sega has sucked since the end of the Dreamcast. Notable exceptions were Shinobi for PS2, Jet Grind Radio Future for Xbox, Panzer Dragoon for Xbox. Everything else sucked ass or was medicore. Anyway. I wish Sega would shrivel up and die or get it's ass out of it's head and make a new Streets of Rage, a new Shinobi and MAKE A GOOD GOD DAMN SONIC GAME AGAIN.

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decoy1978

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In my local GS we have a LOT of copies of used Sega Rally Revo and there is NO line to pick them up. Moral of the story: Know where the market is heading.... This game COULD have been good a few years ago... but not any more.

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raverrozza

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snarple_basic you are a very basic human being!

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godzillavskong

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I played the demo and wasn't impressed at all. Dirt was a far better game. I am a big fan of Sega, but it seems like they have been striking out lately. Condemned 2 is awesome and Virtua Fighter was pretty solid, but Viking got some pretty average reviews and Sonic.........well it aint been the same since the last Dreamcast installment.

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CorruptGamerGX

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I hope Sonic Team is next. They definitely need to go.

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*Revelations

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It wasn't a very good game honestly. Not in comparison with DiRT, which was it's only real competition last year. For an arcade rally racer, it could have been much better. And any Codemaster or Rallisport Challenge title had it beat anyway. Rallisport Challenge 2 came out so long ago, and still nothing has caught up. Even DiRT wasn't as good. Crazy how up and down the rally genre is. That said....if you want to make another Outrun Sega....you have my support :) RE:snarple_basic, Nothing you say makes any sense. You call Revo the best drifting game out there. Is that what you are really looking for? It would explain why you think Forza was boring. I think Revo was passable but wow. It's sad you don't appreciate Forza more. Also sad that you say it's the best thing out there and yet your gamertag shows you have never played PGR4, or DiRT. Those happen to be "drifting" games. And significantly better games in most areas.

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digitalpro

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Sega Rally is a racing game that the older gamers will remember back on the Sega Saturn days. Most have been a playstation gamer. it seems the the only racing games most seem to care about is Gran Turismo series. But I'm one of a few who don't care for the Gran Turismo games. Before some of you guys start going off. I have to right to like what game i want.

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LindBergh2007

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Thank you GS, thank you for throwing another curveball at us by posting an article on Sega that people will spin as bad! That's why you suck! Thank you for making a big deal out of a european developer that's little known and only known for making Sega Rally Revo. Yeah thanks for making people like mall69 spew hate towards SEGA a former console company that's alive,well and doing very well finicially. Thank you for making people think that Sammy owns SEGA when both companies share stock with eachother. Go to hell GS! Leave SEGA alone!

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Petri87

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i totally thought they would make a kill switch game. HA.

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lextexrex

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never heard of the game

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mall69

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serves 'em right. with the power and expectations of todays' consoles, simple arcade racers just 'aint gonna cut it. the need for speed and burnout series both have gimmicks, Revo... rally racing, and that isn't a gimmick, it's real and that's what people expect from a rally game, that's what people expect from today's consoles period. reality. graphics....games that people dreamed of making ten-fifteen years ago. why do think gaming has become a billion dollar business, the power of the 360 and PS3 let developers express that. so, if you're going to make a rally game, better not do it with crazy physics and floating cars. i played the demo for about five minutes and that was more than enough. i was expecting something that would blow the doors off Rallisport 2 and it wasn't even close. that game, as arcade as it was, is a far better game all around. it's silly to think that given more powerful machines to develop for results in a game that can't compare. but, that's what Sega does. they've been picking the ball up and dropping it again for the past 25 years, developer-publisher, doesn't matter. Sega is Sega. and that's a shame, cause i've always been a big Sega guy, but they keep doing everything they can to disappear completely.

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CellAnimation

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Well that sucks, Revo is 1 of my favourite racing games.

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snarple_basic

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Its really sad that a game like this cant be appreciated today. I put more hours in this then that boring Forza 2 game.

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snarple_basic

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tryfe_lyn you shouldn't trade your copy in just because the developers have been let go. Open it up give it a try, dont wait there are still a few online races going on. If you try it you might realize its a really good game, top notch graphics, great challenge, and awsome dirt effects. Put it in your machine!!!

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Auricom-R

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Damn, I liked Sega Rally Revo and I was hoping that Sega Racing Studio would be producing a new Daytona, Outrun, Super Sega GT, or Hang-On

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Erebus

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To be successful in today's gaming industry, you REALLY have to know your audiance. What worked last year, or 10 years ago, may not work today. Then again, it could be all the rage. Know your market! It's a hard lesson....

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snarple_basic

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Revo was a great game. Only problem I seen was it didn't get enough notice. I really enjoyed it, its a very challenging game and racing fans should pick up a copy of this game. In my opinion its the best drifting game out there. Its sad that the studio has been terminated.

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Bodboy466

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I just pray that Ready at Dawn doesn't join the carcasses.

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OfficialBed

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that sucks

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MogFromLeipzig

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Kinda sad :(

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Deominator

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@NND1- Sega Rally Revo is a pretty good game. It has plenty of cars and tracks and the gameplay is tight as it gets. They kept the arcade elements to stay true to the series. That's why I have Dirt for sim rally and Sega Rally Revo for arcade rally.

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ShipwreckX

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I blame EA for buying out good companies or stealing away good developers and flooding the market with crap (there are a FEW good EA games). I also blame the economy.

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NND1

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Good.. Sega needs to go back to their golden days of making awesome games...

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Taegre

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Another one down? When will it end!?

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re4leonkennedy

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44000. Not too many copies were sold. This probably had to do with the release date of October 9th. With all the games that came out in the last three months of last year, it probably wasn't a good time to launch a game. I like sega, but they sometimes make bad decisions.

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Viral-venom13

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Oucch!

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tryfe_lyn

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That was fast...and I didn't even play my copy of Sega Rally Revo yet...now I can't trade it in...I don't think I'll get much for it :?

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jknight5422

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Goll Dayam! Spring cleaning has hit the game industry!

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Aurey

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It's a shame! Sega Rally Revo was a worthy sequel to me...Arcade racers are a bit hard to find these days (and no, PGR does not count as one). I don't think Sega will be producing another Outrun for some time, so the only franchise of arcade racers left out there would be Ridge Racer. I just don't understand why publishers and consumers care that much about realistic simulators and customizing features in racing games.

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teamparadox2k

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It would have sold alot better if it was more then just Sega Rally 2 with a fresh coat of paint and mud. Im a fan of the series and even I didnt buy it which is saying alot if you know me. Sega died the day Sammy took over and consolidated the studios and put the good developers and designed on the back burner. Someone give me 1 good reason why Yu Suzuki is no longer designing games? He was responsible for 9/10 of Sega's hits in the last 12 years (the last couple years not included). So what if Shenmue wasnt a huge seller. The original was put out on a dying system and its sequel was released with little marketing on the Xbox. If Sega was smart they would release both again for the 360 and ps3 with an improved control scheme and new graphics, no other changes are needed. Shenmue invented modern day QTE (god of war, viking, etc etc), it had good fighting system, amazing story, and great voice work.

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Riverwolf007

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Good, It was terrible, although I admit that my perception is permanently destroyed after playing through Rallisport challenge 2.

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pencilpusher69

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Nacho, which one bad game do you refer to? Sega Rally Revo? If you check Metacritic, it appears as though even the worst reviews say it's decent, while the majority give it solid reviews. << LINK REMOVED >>

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DrKill09

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From what I played, Sega Rally Revo was good. This sorta sucks.

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tony2077ca

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well good things its not one of the companys i like aka bioware, blizzard

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reckeweg

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Another one bites the dust, sucks to be those chump weasels.

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NachoPSN

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This is BIG news- one less bad game taking up shelf space

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