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Despite having several marquee licenses on their docket at the moment, Telltale Games announced today that 90 employees—roughly 25% of their 400 staff—are being immediately laid off. The move was announced alongside a restructuring move the developer will undergo in order to “move internal development over to more proven technologies that will fast-track innovation in its core products.” That’s a really fancy way of saying the company had become too big to be sustainable and they’re reapproaching how they develop their games.
It’s tough to hear that Telltale couldn’t restructure or reexamine their development practices before they needed to lay off 90 people. Clearly Telltale has been successful at courting major licenses, like DC’s Batman and Marvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy, but that hasn’t translated into enough sales to sustain their growth. Maybe Telltale expected the bigger names in their games to attract new costumers, or maybe they spent too long ignoring some small, but outstanding, issues with their games.
It’s always a shame to see layoffs, but, as a fan of the studio, it doesn’t shock me. Either Telltale was doing very well and growing every year or something would give. Just a shame it had to effect so many, all at once, and just over a month before Christmas.
Read Telltale’s announcement right here: