Following the official confirmation that Telltale Games abruptly laid off over 250 employees with no warning and no severance pay, many gamers and industry folks alike have criticized the studio for handling the situation as poorly as they did. From developers offering new jobs, to fellow developers putting what went wrong under a microscope, the spotlight is glaring. Adding their voice to the mix is popular streamer PewDiePie and he pulled no punches regarding the closure news.
Felix Arvid Ulf Kjellberg, AKA PewDiePie, took to his YouTube channel to let his thoughts be known in a rant against the studio and what led up to the closure. Like many of us, the streamer was incredibly saddened by the cancellation of many anticipated upcoming projects, including the finale of The Walking Dead, The Wolf Among Us 2, and the Stranger Things game that was also in the works. Though it looks like other studios are banding together to save the abanonded projects, that doesn't lessen the burden that many of the former employees are facing.
It recently came to light that some of the employees laid off had only been with the company for less than a week - some even having relocated from across the country. But it wasn't just the the "bad decisions" on the HR side of things that PewDiePie went after, he also criticized the company for their philosophy regarding choice-driven games where the choice doesn't actually matter at all. He cites this deception as a big reason why their titles continuously fell below expectations sales-wise.
You can hear his full thoughts on the subject in the video at the top of the article. As far as the shutdown goes, Pete Hawley, the CEO of Telltale Games, has issued the following statement:
"It's been an incredibly difficult year for Telltale as we worked to set the company on a new course. Unfortunately, we ran out of time trying to get there. We released some of our best content this year and received a tremendous amount of positive feedback, but ultimately, that did not translate to sales. With a heavy heart, we watch our friends leave today to spread our brand of storytelling across the games industry."
There were so many incredible stories crafted by this team. What were some of your favourite memories from the Telltale crew? Sound off with your thoughts in the comment section below!
If you - or someone you know - has been affected by the recent shut down, you can check out this full list here of developers with current job openings wanting to help out those laid off. If you have any other tips, feel free to shoot them our way so we can help!