[Update] Breaking: Activision Shutters Project Gotham Dev Bizarre Creations?

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[Update] Breaking: Activision Shutters Project Gotham Dev Bizarre Creations?

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Reports are coming in from multiple sources that Activision has closed Project Gotham & Geometry Wars studio Bizarre Creations.

According to UK industry publication Develop - and other sources - the publisher closed the Liverpool, UK-based studio earlier today. All 200 staff at Bizarre have been made redundant and laid off.

Bizarre is best known for its Project Gotham Racing series as well as its downloadable Geometry Wars games. This year, Bizarre shipped two titles for Activision, Blur and 007: Blood Stone. Neither lit up the sales charts, which may have influenced the actions the publisher supposedly took.

There has been no official word yet, and we've reached out to learn more. If this is true, best of luck to everyone at Bizarre - studio shutdowns after shipping holiday titles are all too common in this industry no matter who the publisher is, but that doesn't make it any less painful when it happens.

Check back soon for more.

Update: Activision has released a statement by way of Shack News:

Over the past three years since our purchase of Bizarre Creations, the fundamentals of the racing genre have changed significantly. Although we made a substantial investment in creating a new IP, Blur, it did not find a commercial audience. Bizarre is a very talented team of developers, however, because of the broader economic factors impacting the market, we are exploring our options regarding the future of the studio, including a potential sale of the business.

In other words, there's been no official say either way. One can only hope that Activision is indeed looking to sell Bizarre rather than close it down entirely.

Permalink

So... the only studio that has created original IPs for Activision is now being closed? I guess if it's not CoD, it's not anything.

This is a REAL shame, Bizzare have made some very good racing games in the past. Project Gotham Racing 4 was a treuly fantastic game and (surpise surpise) they have really failed to bring much to the table since being soul-eaten bought by the big A. And shit, not more bad news for the UK games industry.... I fucking hate seeing this happen over here.

Very sad for a very fgood dev who made some cracking games. I knew i couldn't imagine Activision greenlighting something like another geometry wars, it's just too original and decent. Infact im going to take a minute to mourn the factthat we won't see a 3.

Fare thee well Bizarre Creations, i giess you just didn't have the sequel mining potential.

Well, that's Activision Blizzard for you.

The only thing that ever matters, is if you can make money.

wow... isn't this sort of drastic? i mean, it's an old developer with a decent developing history...
what a shame.

"You've done a great job this year guys.

Now get the fuck out."

Gotta love the "Activision Congratulations"

FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU--

-shakes fist-
KKKKKKOOOOOOOOOOOTTTTTTTTTTTTIIIIIIIIIIIIIICCCCCCCCCCKKKKKKKKKKK!!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh no. Oh, please, no.

Is this some kind of competition for you, guys? Are you trying to fuck up as many development studios as you possibly can, Activision? Okay, since you can't exactly exploit Blur or Blood Stone with sequel after sequel every damn year, let's shut them down?

I hate myself for getting Black Ops now. Because, frankly, with an approach like this they can just demolish studios expecting their payment for games and hire other people to make the sequels.

Goodbye, Bizzare Creations. I hope you, guys, find a reputable and trusted publisher.

Oh Activision, you are almost Skeletor levels of evil

Activision fucked up the marketing on Blur. It reviewed well, better than Split Second, but was sent out to die with a disagreement between Activision and retailers and next-to-zero marketing. This is really sad. I've had fond memories of Bizarre games.

Project Gotham Racing was the first racing game I actually bought outside of Mario Kart. I absolutely loved it, and Geometry wars and Blur are awesome as well. If this is true my anger at Activision will only grow.

This is why I won't be buying COD:the next one

or COD:the most recent one

after MW2 they can suck my buns. I will literally only buy an activision game that is awesome and that I've tried at someone elses house.

BTW I played COD MP at my friends and guess what? ITS EXACTLY THE SAME AS THE PREVIOUS 2.

Mildly fun, nothing special.

They were better off with Microsoft...

Maybe MS will scoop them back up?

At least the employees. Under a different studio name.

Fuck you, Activision. You are slowly killing yourself regarding original IP's. I hope Blizzard goes FU and becomes independant. Sounds they make a shitload of cash on their own anyways.

Good bye, Bizarre Creations. Thank you for the three Geometry Wars games in my library.

I hope some good comes out of this and you end up being able to continue making fantastic games somehow else.

I'd say something bad about Activision, but I honestly don't think I can top what they're doing themselves.

Goddam it, even APPLE have standards.

BTW Guys, I'm damn sure EA would like to have you along. Especially if you bring some Blizzard handiwork with you.

Probably Infinity Ward as well.

And another Activision 3rd party developer bites the dust

HAHA, irony is such a fucking bitch.

They left Microsoft because they felt that they had a much brighter future with Activision. They've made some really good games, I mean, I thought Blood Stone was a good game, even if it features the worst Bond as the main character and all. Blur is the only racing game since Mario Kart to interest me, and Geometry Wars 2 was the first Arcade game I bought. But seriously, they screwed themselves this time.

Note to self: never do business with Activision.

Psychosocial:
I thought Blood Stone was a good game, even if it features the worst Bond as the main character and all.

Surely they haven't brought "double 0 plank" Lazenby back?

Wasnt Activision the one who shut down the guys that made Sabouter?
These games were good, I really dont understand. If the games were getting reviews of 4.0 or something it would be ok but they get 7.0s and 8.0s

josemlopes:
Wasnt Activision the one who shut down the guys that made Sabouter?
These games were good, I really dont understand. If the games were getting reviews of 4.0 or something it would be ok but they get 7.0s and 8.0s

Unfortunately, for the people on the business side of things, the scores a game gets aren't nearly as important as how many copies it sells.

For them, it might as well be simple math: "We've put $X million dollars into this studio, it consistently returns $Y million, X >>>> Y, it's not worth it."

Yes, it sucks. It really sucks, and it's one of the biggest problems with the blockbuster-focused industry. But every publisher does it - Activision, EA, Ubisoft, you name it.

John Funk:

josemlopes:
Wasnt Activision the one who shut down the guys that made Sabouter?
These games were good, I really dont understand. If the games were getting reviews of 4.0 or something it would be ok but they get 7.0s and 8.0s

Unfortunately, for the people on the business side of things, the scores a game gets aren't nearly as important as how many copies it sells.

For them, it might as well be simple math: "We've put $X million dollars into this studio, it consistently returns $Y million, X >>>> Y, it's not worth it."

Yes, it sucks. It really sucks, and it's one of the biggest problems with the blockbuster-focused industry. But every publisher does it - Activision, EA, Ubisoft, you name it.

It doesn't even necessarily mean X > Y, it means Y is not significantly enough above X. Sometimes making a tidy profit just isn't enough for publishers and they look to close them to "make room" in their "portfolio" for high profit studios, only to do the same a few years down the road.

I'm sure, even with mediocre sales of Blur and Bloodstone, that the games will have paid for the cost of acquiring and supporting them.

josemlopes:
Wasnt Activision the one who shut down the guys that made Sabouter?

Pandemic Studios, the guys behind Battlefront, Mercenaries and The Saboteur, was shut down by EA.

it begins...

2020 release schedule

call of duty slighty-gray-but-not-black-but-still-darker-then-regular-gray-ops 2
WoW expansion rise of lord scarington the murderinator
....
thats it all over none guarranted profit IP's are going purged during the great activsion game industry absorbtion war of 2017 in fact games arnt called games anymore in this dark time they are called koticks...

"billy want do you want for christmas?"
"I want another KOTICK!!"

Scrumpmonkey:
So... the only studio that has created original IPs for Activision is now being closed? I guess if it's not CoD, it's not anything.

This is a REAL shame, Bizzare have made some very good racing games in the past. Project Gotham Racing 4 was a treuly fantastic game and (surpise surpise) they have really failed to bring much to the table since being soul-eaten bought by the big A. And shit, not more bad news for the UK games industry.... I fucking hate seeing this happen over here.

Very sad for a very fgood dev who made some cracking games. I knew i couldn't imagine Activision greenlighting something like another geometry wars, it's just too original and decent. Infact im going to take a minute to mourn the factthat we won't see a 3.

Fare thee well Bizarre Creations, i giess you just didn't have the sequel mining potential.

This. Bizarre Creations was the only good thing to come out of Activision in quite a while. What a bunch of dumbasses.

And people wonder why piracy has become so rampant. Maybe pirates don't want to support the people who spend all their time shutting down our favorite development studios, eh?

Fuck you, Activision. Fuck you.

So much for Kotick trying to improve his reputation over the past weeks.

It's always a shame to see a studio get shut down. However I can't really blame Activision for axing a studio that isn't making them money.

I don't even like racing games that much, and everything to come out of that studio was PURE FUCKING GOLDEN GOODNESS! Activision is making a SERIOUS mistake here. Kotick, other higher-ups at Activision... You're on my fuckin' list...

ugh, dammit, guess I wont be seeing another fur fighters game for awhile, oh who am I kidding, I never expected to see another one but it was one of those under appreciated gems

I guess this time of the year truly "Tis the season" for game devs. *sigh* Last year it was Pandemic, this year this one. 200 people laid off, just like that in a snap. And the two games were actually better than most blockbusters in terms of what they were about and how they went about it.

...*Sigh*...I want to murder everyone at Activision with a box cutter. Not only did Bizarre have a decent-looking future, they didn't make bad games. Of course, it was their choice to team up with Activision, but still, this is a dick move on Activision's part.

image

Damn you Kotick.

I feel a little guilty. When I saw 'Project Gotham' in the title, I assumed they were talking about canceling a Batman game (I know it's not the same developer, but still)
Then when I saw the pic I thought: *whew* that's a relief!

I don't care much for racing games but this a real shitty deal for all the employees there, especially with the holidays coming up.

The guys that made APB at least made a few crappy games in the last few years, but these guys have been making quality games. It sucks that their games were commercial flops, but i hope that atcivision decides to keep them,because I for one want to see another game from them.

Ahhhhh nooooo I want Geometry Wars 2 on PC or PS3 first D: It better get ported eventually.

David Sterling:
FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU--

-shakes fist-
KKKKKKOOOOOOOOOOOTTTTTTTTTTTTIIIIIIIIIIIIIICCCCCCCCCCKKKKKKKKKKK!!!!!!!!!!!!

No, quick, wait! If you use his name, he'll demand that you give him more money and rare stuff than anyone in the world could ever afford!

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