EA’s UK-based development teams have been hit by yet more concerning news, as Polygon are reporting that Ghost Games UK has been hit by a round of layoffs.
The team that was formerly part of Criterion Games took on the mantle of Ghost Games UK during the development of Need for Speed: Rivals, partnering with the newly founded Ghost Games based in Gothenburg, Sweden. This move saw Criterion themselves reducing dramatically in size to around just a small core team and working on a new IP, but they have since seen co-founders Alex Ward and Fiona Perry leave to start on a new venture of their own.
While prior moves were along the lines of reshuffle staff under different names, Polygon’s sources state that these layoffs have seen contractors let go and full-time staff given the option of either taking compensation and leaving or shifting to lend support on an unannounced Battlefield game in development at Visceral.
This move would be quite surprising given the critical reception that NfS: Rivals got, but if sales didn’t meet EA’s expectations then that would explain their decision to make these moves.
The Need for Speed franchise is still securely under the control of Ghost Games in Gothenburg, which was previously explained to Polygon and confirmed to us last year by Craig Sullivan, Creative Director on Rivals.