Saints Row Developer Volition Shuts Down One Year After Reboot

The developer of Saints Row is closing it doors this week.

Longtime Saints Row developer Volition has apparently been shut down. The Saints Row series is one of the biggest franchises in gaming as it is one of the handful of games that released to compete against Grand Theft Auto and actually succeeded. It was able to find an angle on the open world crime genre and make something new out of it. Players were able to build their own gang from scratch and see it evolve over the course of multiple games until the protagonist became a superpowered President that was battling aliens. Things got pretty whacky after the fourth game, prompting a full-blown reboot that would release in 2022.

Unfortunately, the Saints Row reboot was met with a negative reception. The game was incredibly buggy, felt dated, and the overall tone and direction of the reboot didn't jive with players. Now that the game has been out for a year and shipped its final DLC, developer Volition is closing its doors. News came way after a bunch of staff from the studio took to Twitter to report that they had been laid off and that Volition was undergoing a full studio closure. The studio itself Volition has been around since 1996 and has worked on other franchises beyond Saints Row such as the Red Faction series. As of right now, it remains unclear what will come of these IPs going forward, but if they do continue, it will be under different developers.

Volition had the following statement to share:

"The Volition team has proudly created world-class entertainment for fans around the globe for 30 years," said the studio in a statement. "We've been driven by a passion for our community and always worked to deliver joy, surprise, and delight. This past June, Embracer Group announced a restructuring program to strengthen Embracer and maintain its position as a leader in the video game industry. As part of that program, they evaluated strategic and operational goals and made the difficult decision to close Volition effective immediately. To help our team, we are working to provide job assistance and help smooth the transition for our Volition family members. We thank our customers and fans around the world for all the love and support over the years. You will always be in our hearts."

Future of Saints Row

Saints Row is a beloved franchise and still has fans even after the reboot didn't perform well, it's just those fans want something more akin to what they had before. Fans were curious if we'd get remakes of the original games in the future, but the team behind the game said there were no plans for that at the moment. Beyond that, a sequel to the reboot wasn't announced nor really teased after the release of the reboot. It's unclear if Embracer has aspirations to continue the franchise at a new studio.

Saints Row on PlayStation Plus

Although Volition parent company Embracer Group noted ahead of launch that pre-orders for Saints Row were surpassing expectations, the game didn't seem to have legs. After its release, Embracer noted it expected the game to be profitable, but was disappointed in the reception of the game and didn't see it being the return on investment that they had hoped for. Now, a year later, the game is being added as one of the free games available on PlayStation Plus in September.