Back in May, Embracer Group bought Hitman GO and Lara Croft GO developer Square Enix Montreal from Square Enix. Last month, Square Enix Montreal rebranded with its new studio name of Onoma. And today, Jason Schreier at Bloomberg reports that Embracer Group will shut down Onoma altogether. Embracer reportedly informed Onoma employees just today that it will shut down, and some staff will be transferred to Eidos Montreal. Eidos Montreal is also owned by Embracer, and it is apparently supporting Microsoft with the development of the new Fable game, among other projects.
The shutdown of Onoma apparently arrives as part of broader cost-cutting measures, with Bloomberg sources stating Eidos Montreal has “reduced the scope of one unannounced project and will cancel another one.” On Twitter, Schreier elaborated that Eidos Montreal has canceled a Stranger Things-inspired game, but it is working on a new IP (the one with the scope shift) and a new Deus Ex game. Since its transaction with Square Enix, Embracer Group owns the Legacy of Kain, Tomb Raider, and Deus Ex IP.
Needless to say, it’s always an unfortunate state of affairs when people lose their jobs. Fortunately, Montreal is a hotbed of game development talent, so hopefully those who are laid off find a new home quickly.