Layoffs Come to Silicon Knights

Layoffs Come to Silicon Knights


Silicon Knights has laid off staff but denies all rumors about Eternal Darkness 2.

It's been a rough couple of weeks for Silicon Knights, the Canadian studio best known for Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain, Eternal Darkness: Sanity's Requiem and of course the disappointing Xbox 360-exclusive Too Human. First, its long-standing, multi-million-dollar litigation against Epic Games over problems with the Unreal Engine 3 in Too Human were dismissed almost in their entirety, and then, just a week later, Epic was awarded nearly $4.5 million in its counter-suit against the studio. And now comes a claim that Nintendo has lost its faith in the studio, resulting in the cancellation of Eternal Darkness 2.

That claim, which to be clear is entirely unsubstantiated, came from a NeoGAF user by the name of "Shiggy," who wrote that once Nintendo realized it would need to sink another $10 million into the game just to keep the lights on at Silicon Knights, it balked. "It looks like there have been internal discussions between Nintendo and Silicon Knights," Shiggy wrote. "NCL reviewed its decision and it appears as if Eternal Darkness 2 is cancelled for now. Hence, many of the 40-man team were laid off, leaving the studio in limbo now."

Yet substantiated or not, Silicon Knights boss Denis Dyack issued a statement acknowledging some layoffs but denying the Nintendo part of the equation. "Silicon Knights has unfortunately had to lay off a small number of people. We are scaling back to a core group and focusing all our efforts on future opportunities," he told GamesIndustry. "As to the rumor about Nintendo, it is not true and has no basis in fact."

What specifically about the rumor "is not true and has no basis in fact" isn't entirely clear, however, as Eternal Darkness 2 has never actually been confirmed as being in development. Has it not been canceled? Was it never actually in production in the first place? At this point, nobody knows.

What is known is that Silicon Knights had already cut its headcount by nearly 75 percent in October 2011, leaving it with just 25 full-time employees, although the NeoGAF rumor suggests that new hires had since been made. Regardless of the status of Eternal Darkness 2, however, or whether it had 25 or 40 employees, having to reduce its headcount even furhter looks like very bad news for Silicon Knights.

Source: GamesIndustry


Good, not on the layoff parts because that sucks for all the poor people stuck working for them or just getting hired to now get the boot, but good that they (supposedly) aren't working on a ED 2.

Why? Because that face of Baldur there in the picture, was the single expression he ever made throughout the entire game, I swear to the All-father...
And its obvious game quality just went right downhill after that point.

And just a sticking point, who makes the main character of their action-oriented RPG after the Norse Mythos equivalent of a pretty boy weakling? I mean the guy dies from a piece of mistletoe!

Looks like Nintendo decided they just couldn't...

*puts on sunglasses*

... afiord the risk

Why? Because that face of Baldur there in the picture, was the single expression he ever made throughout the entire game, I swear to the All-father...

And its obvious game quality just went right downhill after that point.

When the best part of your Viking cyberpunk game is choosing the color tint for his armor you know you have NO business in gaming. The combat would have been unbearable if it hadn't been for the hammer attack's area of effect.

I just wish Dyack would go away. His arrogance has driven SK into the ground and it astounds me how they got funding from the Canadian government. At this point I don't I would want them to work on an ED2 (I didn't even really like the first one)

So the company that is hemorrhaging funds and people like crazy either refuses to work on their most valuable IP or refuses to announce that they're working on it and getting a ton of publicity and ground swell behind them. Doesn't really seem like they want to make video games any more. And having played through Too Human I can assure you I don't want them making any more games either.

Okay, in all seriousness it does suck when a company that has made some pretty damn good games in the past goes under. I do wish the best for them and hope that they find jobs but this company has shot themselves in the foot so many times that they don't have anything below the waist.

Its funny that they are "best known for" the only 3 games they have made that anyone has heard of. Is there a substantial backlog of titles under their belt?

LoK got WAAAAY better when Amy Henig and Crystal Dynamics made Soul Reaver, then got way worse afterwards...

Eternal Darkness was great, but the only way you will see how great is if you really suck at the game and roam around with no sanity...

Too human was never something that I was interested in, but I'm under the impression that it will go down right after Duke Nukem Forever on the list of games that sucked so bad they ruined lives and companies.

While the prospect of a Lovecraftian horror game is always welcome, I stopped wanting an Eternal Darkness 2 a long time ago. Silicon Knights, barring 2 good titles that honestly could have been better, almost defies understanding as to why they exist as a company that ostensibly develops games.

I can't think of any other game company that makes 3 games in 20 years and still exists in a position that people report on their doings.

It would be like is 38 studios were still in the news in 2027 having done nothing but Reckoning...

EDIT: I went on Gamefaqs and saw they made a shitty X-Men game, and an MGS port for Nintendo. *slow clap* wow...

Yeah, I find this rumor to be inherently contradictory. It would cost "10 million dollars" to keep the studio open, yet they only have 40 employees? That would be $250,000 per person.

And wouldn't Nintendo own the rights to Eternal Darkness anyways since they published it? Couldn't they just farm it out to Retro Studios or anybody if they thought SK was untrustworthy? I'm honestly surprised they haven't sold it outright by now like they did with Rare intellectual properties.

oh it never ceases, Silicon Knights. just down down and down again. these news articles are like a series now :]

but mine has ended since I've finished X-Men Destiny (100%). it...wasn't very good. but something tells me it's way better than Too Human.

Man, what happened to those guys? They did stupendously with Eternal Darkness, but since then has just been worse and worse news. Oh, and you can't cancel something that wasn't being made. But really, if they did that bad with Too Human, do we want them touching Eternal Darkness 2?

Well I always had a soft spot for silicon knights purely because of Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain which I still think is the best game in the eventual series.

I never played eternal darkness so dont know about that but Too Human was terrible in my eyes and I dont think they have done much since maybe it would be better they call it a day the ship seems to be sinking pretty fast.

People made things up on an internet forum? No way! LIES.

How is this studio still even alive? They've been through so much crap it seems certain that they would have had no option but to close up shop.

And if they were making Eternal Darkness 2 then that would explain what they have been doing all this time since Too Human. That's something I've been wondering.

Sadly everything dies but something die with glory. Like the show house it's last episode will stay on peoples mind for some time.

SK when they die it will be like a man with no family or friend last breath. Left only to rot by a world that has long since left it behind. It's only lasting impact will be the stench left behind in the walls becuase no one knows or even cares they died.

Wow I think I just depressed myself.

Guys! They helped make the MGS1 remake remember? You know, the Twin Snakes...Anyone? I mean it had super silly matrix cutscenes, but it's still notable.....right?

Yeah Silicon Knights had a hard life, when you have a mere two notably GOOD games to your name (Blood Omen and Eternal Darkness) over a 20 year period, something isn't hitting right.

Andy Chalk:

*stitches on grammar Nazi uniform*
Mr Chalk, did you realize that you made an error in spelling?
*calls for Hans*
Take this man behind the sheds and shoot him!

a minute later......



Shame that Silicone Knights had to go down hill, they had potential!

Honestly, I can't feel bad for Silicon Knights. They haven't made a good game since Eternal Darkness. Honestly I'm wondering why Nintendo didn't just buy them out and make them a first party developer like they did with Retro.

I remember watching my brother play Eternal Darkness on the gamecube it look like a awesome. I remember playing Twin Snakes and too me it was a good game because it was MGS1 with new graphics and gameplay.

Too Human I really hope Silicon Knights makes a sequel to that game.

Maybe my tax dollars can go into something good now. Maybe another game by Rockstar Toronto since The Warriors video game was actually pretty good.

And just a sticking point, who makes the main character of their action-oriented RPG after the Norse Mythos equivalent of a pretty boy weakling? I mean the guy dies from a piece of mistletoe!

Usually Square-enix XD

And, yes, it's hard to sympathize with a company because they tried to sue someone else for making a crap game. It wasn't Epic's fault they chose those awkward controls, or boring story.

Funny thing is, when they mentioned games as a trilogy, it was Too Human and Mass Effect. An i was interested in Too Human more. lol. Such is history.


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