Rumour: Sony Online Entertainment Closing Studios?

Reports are flying around this morning regarding the current state of Sony Online Entertainment, known for games such as Free Realms and DC Universe Online. Sources speaking to Kotaku are claiming that the developer’s Seattle, Tucson, and Denver studios have been closed, and all staff let go.

The staff levels at the Austin and San Diego studios are said to have been halved. Duke Nukem creator, George Broussard, first brought this to light with a tweet regarding the Seattle office:

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“Word that Sony Online Entertainment Seattle is having layoffs and that studio closure is possible.”

This was then followed by:

“SOE Seattle and other studios (Denver is rumored) will be closed tomorrow. Good luck to all impacted.”

As always, we wish those affected luck and we hope they land on their feet.

Source: Kotaku, Twitter

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8 Comments

  1. Woah that was unexpected. What just happened?
    I don’t believe this!
    Shocking

  2. We’re certainly seeing hard times biting…

    Hope this doesn’t impact Free Realms and the excellent DCUO / the new content. Just hit DCUO level cap last night and the whole game changed – now going to build the ultimate hero with legendary armour and powers. Join our PS3 League ‘FRONTLINE’!?

  3. Consumers who have paid money and invested time in yet another Sony venture could be left in the lurch. Sony needs to be more forthcomming with information and willingness to open up SOE software to 3rd party servers so that customers are not hurt too badly by their decisions.

    Sony’s track record shows that the company provides little or no notice to users of their plans to exit most propriatary standards, formats or service created by Sony – choosing to wait instead so as to extract the last penny possible before pulling the plug.

    Users of the UMD format no longer have access to any UMD format PSP games or Movies nore can they use their existing purchases in newer PSP-Go or other devices. MiniDisk users faced the same fate as did DAT users and people with AATRAC as well as Sony’s online music services have all lost out. Sony recently removed the “other OS” feature in PS3 without warning or consultation sparking a significant backlash from the open source community.

    Consumer faith needs to be rebuilt and that means better communication and a more ethical level of compensation for those customers who have been disadvantaged

    • While i agree with some of what you’re saying, other pieces make no sense. For example, “Users of the UMD format no longer have access to any UMD format PSP games” — huh? UMD games are still available, dude.

  4. I hope this doesn’t affect content for DCUO/Free Realms, or more importantly, The Agency which is supposed to land later this year.

    • It might have hit the Agency, one of the studios where working on it :0

  5. Humm, believe it when I see it….

  6. Foxhound_Solid sadly it’s now official – they walked 205 of their workforce out of the studio buildings this morning… There will be quite a few sad families tonight.

    Denver, Seattle and Tucson studios have all completely closed down. A few of the departing staff from admin said there is more cuts ahead for SOE so the remaining staff will likely be looking for new opportunities.

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