In our original writing, we reported that the remaining 25 Telltale employees were there to finish the final season of The Walking Dead. However, since then, Telltale has finally made an official statement, and the reaming crew is there to work on a Minecraft project with Netflix. So, the team working on The Walking Dead has been let go as well and will not be continued.
Telltale finally made an official statement, released on Twitter:
Today Telltale Games made the difficult decision to begin a majority studio closure following a year marked by insurmountable challenges. A majority of the company’s employees were dismissed earlier this morning, with a small group of 25 employees staying on to fulfill the company’s obligations to its board and partners. CEO Pete Hawley issued the following statement:
‘It’s been an incredibly difficult year for Telltale as we worked to set the company on a new course. Unfortunately, we ran out of time trying to get there. We released some of our best content this year and received a tremendous amount of positive feedback, but ultimately, that did not translate to sales. With a heavy heart, we watch our friends leave today to spread our brand of storytelling across the games industry.’
Telltale will issue further comments regarding its product portfolio in the coming weeks.
Telltale Games, the team behind The Walking Dead, The Wolf Among Us, Batman: The Enemy Within, and Games of Thrones, might be closing their doors for good. According to multiple online sources, the developer laid off almost the entirety of their staff — leaving a skeleton crew of about 25 people– with no severance pay. Projects like their rumored Stranger Things adaptation and the second season of The Wolf Among Us has been canceled.
I can confirm that I have been laid off at my cool video game job, along with everybody else. This was a dream job and I will miss my friends terribly. Going dark for a bit, but I am available for freelance and contracted work.
— Josh Trujillo! ?️? (@losthiskeysman) September 21, 2018
Today’s news comes only a few months after Telltale laid off 90 people from their staff. Accusations of a toxic work environment that overworked their dedicated employees were ultimately to blame. Earlier this year even, co-founder and former CEO Kevin Bruner sued the company for financial damages.
On his website, Bruner commented on the unfortunate news of Telltale’s potential closure:
Today, I’m mostly saddened for the people who are losing their jobs at a studio they love. And I’m also saddened at the loss of a studio that green-lit crazy ideas that no one else would consider. I’m comforted a bit knowing there are now so many new talented people and studios creating games in the evolving narrative genre. While I look forward to those games and new developments, and continuing to contribute, I will always find “A Telltale Game” to have been a unique offering.
I know that Telltale will be remembered fondly for what it has done best.
Studios like Santa Monica and Ubisoft have already encouraged the former Telltale employees to apply for positions on Twitter. While ex-employees, voice actors, and other gaming studios have taken to Twitter to voice their apologies, Telltale has yet to make an official statement.
As of now, sources believe that Telltale will deliver the final season of The Walking Dead as promised. Episode Two is still set to release next week.
This is a developing story, and we will continue to follow it closely.