Obsidian hit by layoffs

Obsidian Entertainment’s history with Lady Luck has always been spotty at best and tempestuous at work. About a year after their last batch of layoffs, following completion of Dungeon Siege III and a poor reaction to their original IP Alpha Protocol, more Obsidian staff have been consigned to redundancy according to scattered reports on twitter and the developer’s official forums. According to an anonymous source a future next-gen project has been cancelled as a result of the layoffs, which have also impacted the team working on the South Park RPG. Around 20 to 30 staff are said to have been let go […]

Obsidian Entertainment’s history with Lady Luck has always been spotty at best and tempestuous at work. About a year after their last batch of layoffs, following completion of Dungeon Siege III and a poor reaction to their original IP Alpha Protocol, more Obsidian staff have been consigned to redundancy according to scattered reports on twitter and the developer’s official forums.

According to an anonymous source a future next-gen project has been cancelled as a result of the layoffs, which have also impacted the team working on the South Park RPG. Around 20 to 30 staff are said to have been let go including one poor sod who only just started there yesterday. I can’t even begin to fathom how horrible this must be for that particular lad or lass. Imagine having finally secured a job with one of your favourite developers only to be given your marching orders the very next day?

Able to trace their lineage back to Black Isle Studios (creators of Baldur’s Gate and Planescape: Torment) Obsidian are known for giving us some of the best writing ever seen in videogames, yet their titles always seem to come beset with technical problems or other shortcomings. Their ambitious spy-sim/RPG Alpha Protocol had intricate storytelling and impressive character progression that was unfortunately pulled down into the mire by flaky combat, piss-poor AI and general lack of polish. Knight of the Old Republic II suffered from the abruptest of endings thanks to a hurried development forced upon Obsidian by LucasArts, while Fallout: New Vegas was afflicted by numerous technical issues mostly owing to trying to squeeze more out of Bethesda’s tech than was healthy for it.

None of which is intended to disparage Obsidian in anyway. I’m a great appreciator of their work and news like this is disheartening to both hear and share, so my thoughts and best wishes go out to those staff affected. Having Obsidian on your resume should open some doors though, even if you only worked there for a day, so here’s hoping they all swiftly find new positions with other developers.

Source: Joystiq

Matt McDermott

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Matt is the irresponsible degenerate behind bitscreed.com.