Heavy Layoffs Hit 007 Legends Studio

Heavy Layoffs Hit 007 Legends Studio

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A "steep decline" in console gaming has led to deep staffing cuts at Eurocom.

U.K.-based Eurocom, which was founded in 1988 and most recently developed 007 Legends for Activision, announced today that it has laid off a significant number of employees. Just 50 people will remain at the studio, from a pre-layoff headcount of more than 200.

"Eurocom are undertaking a restructuring which I regret to say has meant we've made the majority of our workforce redundant today," Studio Director Hugh Binns said in a statement. "This includes many very experienced, talented and highly skilled employees, and we'd like to thank them all for your hard work and efforts."

"We've fought to try and save as many jobs as possible, but the steep decline in demand for console games, culminating in a number of console projects falling through in the last week, left us with no option," he continued. "Eurocom has retained a core staff of just under 50 employees and will be focusing mainly on mobile opportunities moving forward."

I suppose it's fair to say that the console scene is in a state of flux as the successors to both the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 loom large, but a quick trip to Metacritic leads me to think that there's more to it than just an industry-wide decline in interest. 007 Legends has a Metacritic score of 45 on the Xbox 360 and 43 on the PS3 - IGN called it "abhorrent" while Polygon described it as a "cynical, dismal little game" - and while one bad game should never decide the fate of a studio, Eurocom hasn't exactly been on a roll lately either, churning out licensed non-hits like Rio, GoldenEye 007, Vancouver 2010 and Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs. In today's videogame industry, that's not the sort of track record that keeps triple-digit employee numbers around for long.

Source: GamesIndustry

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I think the problem is that the games you made sucked, not that console gaming is declining. I feel sorry for the guys who lost their jobs though.

Well, I guess it might be an oddjob working for Eurocom.

"You expect me to talk?"
"No mister Bond, I expect you to clear out your desk by the end of the work day and turn in your ID badge."

I was wondering how bad a 45 on Metacritic really was, just out of curiosity and for perspective, when going to the ratings list for everything they have on the site, I had to go to page 106 out of a whole 114 pages of rated games to even start seeing things rated at 45. Wow. Over 90% of games ever rated on Metacritic were rated better than this game.

Aw dammit. I liked their 007 remake.
Didn't bother with Legends though.

It is because the reception was bad, not because consoles are dying...sucks about the jobs though...

The Goldeneye remake on Wii was actually quite good, though it suffered a little bit from not using Wii Motion Plus.

Ah Eurocom, you lot made Crash Bash.

I've been waiting for you to die ever since.

Waiting... biding my time.

Bwahahahah!

It's shame people are losing jobs, but when you turn out tie-in marketed rubbish for a decade you aren't allowed to act surprised when the axe falls.

So, they made a terrible game that nobody bought.
And they're saying it's the industry's fault they're cutting staff.
Nice try at shifting the blame there guys, but you had this coming.

Let that be a lesson to all other devs. Make a shitty game, lose your job.

Can't say I'll be shedding a tear for them.

At all.

Their problem is that they didn't make more 007 games like this one:

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I know Agent Under Fire and Nightfire were similar in setup, but compared to TWINE they just didn't cut the mustard.

At all.

Squilookle:
Can't say I'll be shedding a tear for them.

At all.

Their problem is that they didn't make more 007 games like this one:

image

I know Agent Under Fire and Nightfire were similar in setup, but compared to TWINE they just didn't cut the mustard.

At all.

What are you talking about? Nightfire kicks TWINE's ass. Are you talking about Goldeneye?

alphamalet:

What are you talking about? Nightfire kicks TWINE's ass. Are you talking about Goldeneye?

No, I'm talking about TWINE- Eurocom's only decent Bond game. Nightfire was just utter crap, mostly because Eurocom tried writing it's own Bond story, which just fell flat at every turn. The only good parts in the whole game were sneaking around the office at night in Phoenix Rising, the race minigame in Enemies Vanquished, and the mini tanks and helicopters in multiplayer. Skyrail -Nightfire's best multiplayer map- was layed out much better in TWINE, The gun handling -while stiff in TWINE- was even worse in Nightfire. Even the bots were better in TWINE, and that's saying something.

Seriously, sometimes Nightfire doesn't even feel like a Bond game- just badly written fanfiction with an over excited blast of the bond theme when you do something as mundane as unlock a door. And don't get me started on how much M and Q constantly jabber in your ear throughout the whole game, clearly with nothing better to do with their time. "That Vent, 007!"

Yes... I can see it. It's filling my whole screen for fuck's sake.

007 legends was one of the worst console to pc ports i have ever seen.

and they didnt even ramp up the difficulty/remove the dumbing down.
playing on the hardest difficulty was anoyingly easy.

i think it is one of the very few games i have uninstalled before finishing it.
and i finished saw, the game and hard time with their godarwful controls, bugs and retarded story... and that piece of shit was something.

If they are good. they will be swooped up by someone else the emplyees will.

Oh, that's gonna look good on the resume...

Employer "The last game you made in the past few years?"
Employee "The James Bond one..."
Employer "Oh, Blood Stone?"
Employee "Nah... It was *cough*007 Legends*cough*"
Employer "Get the hell out of my office!"

Hmmmm. Maybe if the industry worked on making good games that people actually want to play... instead of making terrible games that they simply THINK people want to play... then layoffs like this won't happen? I mean, people looked at 007 Legends, they saw its multiplayer, they saw its campaigns, and they shrugged it off as a worse Call of Duty. Then they went and bought Call of Duty instead. If they had made a game about being James Bond, instead of simply shooting people as a James Bond avatar, then maybe - just maybe! - they could corner a market that isn't currently being tapped into. Instead they aimed for the FPS crowd, who had Halo 4 and Black Ops II to satiate them.

Hitman Absolution is a sneaky spy romp with a well-established character, and because there's nothing else like it on the market, its doing rather well. If it was a first-person shooter, then we'd probably see it flail, too. Y'see how this works, publishers? ...and I can't blame Eurocom for it. They were given the brief by Activision (and, dare I say it, Danjaq) to make the game as bland and "mass-market" appeal. That's the thing about the mass-market, though, isn't it - they've already got toys to play with.

Not all that surprised. I didn't even know they were still making Bond games.

Maybe it's because they are creating poor games. That might explain the decline.

In all seriousness though, it sucks when things like this happen. Especially when it leads to people losing their jobs.

It's crazy, every time I see an article like this here or anywhere, I can predict 95 percent of the time that "and therefore we'll be pursuing the mobile/tablet market" will be near the bottom. It's going to be hard for your game to stand out when everyone who couldn't make a good AAA game decides to make iphone games. Based on the quality of 007 Legends, I don't see them making the next World of Goo either. It takes a special talent and great idea to succeed in that market, just like in AAA console gaming.

And it's because people aren't playing console games and the market is falling? I would cite sources explaining how this is completely ridiculous, but it should be obvious to everyone that that's not what happened here.

Yeah, it has to be that console gaming is dying, I can't think of a single other reason why nobody bought this game.

http://www.metacritic.com/game/xbox-360/007-legends

Not a single reason at all.

Legends had some cool moments (doing the Fort Knox assault with Leiter was pretty cool), but it was a hot mess in terms of everything else. Bizarre continuity issues galore, a terribly out-of-date game engine, boring level design...all the criticism it got was justified. Incredibly, the Skyfall DLC was even worse.

It always sucks to see developers out of work.

Andy Chalk:
"Eurocom are undertaking a restructuring which I regret to say has meant we've made the majority of our workforce redundant today," Studio Director Hugh Binns said in a statement. "This includes many very experienced, talented and highly skilled employees, and we'd like to thank them all for your hard work and efforts."

Hmm, problems making money? CLEARLY this is the fault of the "very experienced, talented and highly skilled employees" and not mandates passed down from management...

Wouldn't it be great if before people blamed others they stopped and thought about the bigger picture?

Codeknight:

Andy Chalk:
"Eurocom are undertaking a restructuring which I regret to say has meant we've made the majority of our workforce redundant today," Studio Director Hugh Binns said in a statement. "This includes many very experienced, talented and highly skilled employees, and we'd like to thank them all for your hard work and efforts."

Hmm, problems making money? CLEARLY this is the fault of the "very experienced, talented and highly skilled employees" and not mandates passed down from management...

Wouldn't it be great if before people blamed others they stopped and thought about the bigger picture?

Maybe they are all talentless idiots and he is being polite. Or maybe everyone thought they were making a great game and pulled together etc. And it just didn't happen or they ran out of money. Not everything is managements fault. And the upper levels won't lose their jobs because they are the upper levels. This is the same in every business even your chip shop on the corner. Businesses fail at projects and need to downsize. I doubt anyone laying the staff off enjoyed it.

Lono Shrugged:
Maybe they are all talentless idiots and he is being polite. Or maybe everyone thought they were making a great game and pulled together etc. And it just didn't happen or they ran out of money. Not everything is managements fault. And the upper levels won't lose their jobs because they are the upper levels. This is the same in every business even your chip shop on the corner. Businesses fail at projects and need to downsize. I doubt anyone laying the staff off enjoyed it.

Quite possible, and true that's how businesses work. I've heard scary things about management hoisting the blame on the peons though. Yeah, no one enjoys firing some one, but I'm sure they enjoy it a lot more than admitting maybe they shouldn't have looked at poorly done studies and jumped on whatever bandwagon it promoted.

Failures all around sure, but the higher ups rarely take their blame and almost always shift it to something else, e.g. "the steep decline in demand for console games." More likely bad game development decisions lead to their switch to AAA public transit/poopin' games.

Off Topic: These Captcha ads really bug me. I do not want the Hopper or Dish thank you, just want to post...

 

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