Rumor: Too Human Developer Lays Off 75 Percent of Staff

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Rumor: Too Human Developer Lays Off 75 Percent of Staff

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The Canadian government-funded game studio behind Too Human and X-Men Destiny reportedly suffered major cutbacks today.

Silicon Knights is an independent game studio based in St. Catharine's, Ontario across the border from Niagara Falls, NY. Despite receiving money from multiple government sources in order to create highly sought after jobs, reports are coming in from anonymous sources close to the company that Silicon Knights has laid off most of it staff. According to the sources, the company shrank by nearly 75 percent - reduced from 97 full time employees to just 25.

"Silicon Knights has had massive layoffs. They are now down to a core staff of 25 people," one source said.

"It may interest you to note that SK laid off all but 25 employees today," said another.

Founded by Denis Dyack in 1992, Silicon Knights made a few DOS games before making a big splash in 2002 with Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem for the Nintendo GameCube. After the dismal Too Human in 2008 and an ongoing legal battle with Epic Games, the studio received three grants from both the Province of Ontario and the Canadian Federal government totaling $8 million Canadian to grow to a staff of 97 and "make a AAA game."

Unfortunately for Dyack, Silicon Knights and the people who no longer are employed at the studio, that game may have been X-Men Destiny. Its critical and commercial failure greatly contributed to the financial situation in which these layoffs were a necessity.

Silicon Knights has not confirmed or denied these layoffs, but if the rumor proves true, The Escapist extends condolences to the families of those who might have lost their jobs. With some help, I'm sure that they'll find work again soon.

Source: 1up

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I am surprised they remained opened after the money pit and commercial bomb that Too Human was.

why do people create bad games like this latest x-men abomination and expect it to sell

When you release games that everyone seems to hate, this isn't too surprising.

its still depressing to read. layoffs are never good.

Just think, they could've had enough money to hire twice their max staff had they just done something more in the Eternal Darkness universe...

Wait...Those guys were Canadian?!

As a Canadian myself, I apologize on their behalf for Too Human and that X-Men game. :(

I will also pump my fist in the air over Eternal Darkness, and offer condolences to the people that got laid off.

Kill or be killed. That's the games industry now, you have to hit home run everytime.

You mean... they can make more "games"!?!?

Wait X-Men destiny was by the same guys like too human?

Y u no learn from mistakes?!

I mean seriously, Too Human had potential...

Too bad that Too Human was such a pisser in terms of gameplay. The idea behind it was frickin' sweet, and I would have slogged through two more instances of it to see the story concluded... but it'll never happen now. :\
Tough break for the folks who lost their jobs (if this is indeed true)... hope they get back on their feet soon.

Solution: Eternal Darkness HD..... you can thank me later.

hazabaza1:
When you release games that everyone seems to hate, this isn't too surprising.

Yeah, really.

I don't want to see people losing jobs in this environment, but still, cause and effect. Put out a bad product...Get the ax. Seems logical at least.

Somewhere in that group of people laidoff....are great ideas....now we can hope that they can bud and sprout....and something kickass will be born!

Didnt they make that crazy Survival Horror game for the Gamecube that everyone seems to love?

Y U NO MAKE PROFITABLE GAME!

Protip: Dont make shitty games

Just make a Eternal Darkness sequel and count your losses.

Darn. It's sad to see the guys who developed Blood Omen fall so low- first to fall to mediocrity, then now to being a tiny, insignificant speck.

D0WNT0WN:
Protip: Dont make shitty games

Just make a Eternal Darkness sequel and count your losses.

Considerin how crappy Eternal Darkness sold (despite how awesome it was) I'm not at all surprised they never made a sequel.

Dont see why every one acts so sad when something like this happens.

These guys made shitty games. The games did not sell because they sucked. And thus, they had to close. Thats the way it should be. Its not like some big publisher bought them up and closed them just for the fun of it (looking at you, THQ).

Imagine for a moment that SK were, I dont know, a restaurant and not a game studio. If the service was bad and the food tasted bad, while the prices were still as high as other decent restaurants in the area, do they really deserve the "BAW SO SAD" treatment when they close?

I dont get it, I really dont.

while a bummer, not surprising :/ Xmen wasn't bad, just, boring, wish i'd gotten something else .... like Viewtful joe :p

maybe they should get together with the people that made X-Blades and Blade Kitten and create a new studio, while they're at it hire Uwe Boll as story developer and M. Night Shyamalan to write the next Eternal Darkness XD

but in all seriousness they sucked at making games hence they're not cut out for the video game industry maybe they can make RPG books, they seem to be good with pitching pen and paper ideas

Sucks for them, but anyone who made Too Human deserves to get fired.

Exar Kun85:
Solution: Eternal Darkness HD..... you can thank me later.

yeah when I saw that they got government funds, I thought they shoulda first re-released Eternal Darkness for download first

but I guess getting to play with the X-Men license was too enticing

I'm more surprised that Canadian Government funded that rpg game.

I suppose its not completely unheard of.. considering U.S. government funded America's Army.

aegix drakan:
Wait...Those guys were Canadian?!

As a Canadian myself, I apologize on their behalf for Too Human and that X-Men game. :(

I will also pump my fist in the air over Eternal Darkness, and offer condolences to the people that got laid off.

you can also apologize for Justin Bieber while you're at it. :(

I suspect Silicon Knights won't be around for very much longer, unless they go into making iPhone games or web-based games.

Frankly, I was surprised that they even existed up until now. I thought they had gone under a long time ago.

It's too late for this kind of thing i'm afraid - they already made Too Human.

So much for the trilogy eh?
I'd say I'm happy cause now they wont make anything like that again... but I'm also pretty sad because those poor hard working people lost their jobs.
Good luck to them all on their future endeavors.

What a shame. I really enjoyed Too Human and would have loved to see the trilogy finished one day.

Sounds like the Canadian Government should have payed that money to another studio. That is government spending for you. Put it into failed endeavors. All well. If that were the US Government, they would have given them ten times that amount of money, then they would have given them more when their last game failed, then more to prevent layoffs, then more just because that is how inept the US government is when it comes to spending money.

Also, $8 Million Canadian to hire new staff and make a AAA title? Really? That is nowhere near enough money to make a new title.

It sucks that people lost their jobs. But no government should subsidize a company.

bahumat42:
why do people create bad games like this latest x-men abomination and expect it to sell

They were commissioned to make a game. It's not like they could say half way through, "Oh wait, this is shit." And then not release anything or ask for another year. Money went into the game, they have to release something.

SmashLovesTitanQuest:
Dont see why every one acts so sad when something like this happens.

These guys made shitty games. The games did not sell because they sucked. And thus, they had to close. Thats the way it should be. Its not like some big publisher bought them up and closed them just for the fun of it (looking at you, THQ).

Imagine for a moment that SK were, I dont know, a restaurant and not a game studio. If the service was bad and the food tasted bad, while the prices were still as high as other decent restaurants in the area, do they really deserve the "BAW SO SAD" treatment when they close?

I dont get it, I really dont.

Yeah, because video games are as immediate as the food service industry.

Do you really think they went into this thinking, "Oh boy, we're going to go make some really bad games, Yippie!"?
Games development is typically a big, orchestrated mess, and no one formula works for every title and every developer.
When you add in licensing, time constraints, and a project that wasn't particularly inspired, the same amount of effort that made a great game like Thief 2 (made in just a year with borrowed assets and engine but is great to this day) could make any of the thousands of sub-par games out there.

I'm not really talking about Silicon Knights at this point, but neither were you, really.

GOOD.

I'm still bitter about just how badly they fucked up Too Human, and dashed my expectations of what was supposed to be one of the coolest sounding games of all time.

They deserve to get fired and close their studio, and it's a wonder why it's taken this long.

But, but, but...........but no Too Human 2? You left a opening for a sequel! You must give me closure. Shame that people had to lose their jobs though. Tough times for all, nearly all.

I don't care that they have made some less than stellar games, my sympathy goes to all of the people who have just lost their jobs.

It's hard enough to get a job in the game industry, suddenly losing you're job like that really sucks.

It's a shame because I really liked Too Human. No really I did. My only gripe with that game was the over the top, long ass death sequence, but that only made me a better player to try avoid it.

I would have even bought DLC/ the Sequel(s) if they came to be.

Erana:

SmashLovesTitanQuest:
Dont see why every one acts so sad when something like this happens.

These guys made shitty games. The games did not sell because they sucked. And thus, they had to close. Thats the way it should be. Its not like some big publisher bought them up and closed them just for the fun of it (looking at you, THQ).

Imagine for a moment that SK were, I dont know, a restaurant and not a game studio. If the service was bad and the food tasted bad, while the prices were still as high as other decent restaurants in the area, do they really deserve the "BAW SO SAD" treatment when they close?

I dont get it, I really dont.

Yeah, because video games are as immediate as the food service industry.

Do you really think they went into this thinking, "Oh boy, we're going to go make some really bad games, Yippie!"?
Games development is typically a big, orchestrated mess, and no one formula works for every title and every developer.
When you add in licensing, time constraints, and a project that wasn't particularly inspired, the same amount of effort that made a great game like Thief 2 (made in just a year with borrowed assets and engine but is great to this day) could make any of the thousands of sub-par games out there.

I'm not really talking about Silicon Knights at this point, but neither were you, really.

Do bad cooks go into cooking thinking "Im going to make this taste really bad"?

Them wanting to make a good game or good games doesnt change shit. They didnt. They went broke. If you as a dev fail to make a good game despite having a big enough budget and enough chances, you should lose your job, period. What do you want to do, give them a medal and a big salary for trying? This isnt the annual kindergarten sports event, this is a business, and a very competitive one at that, but thats a risk every guy or girl takes when they get into game development.

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