Warhammer 40K: Kill Team dev closed

THQ developer Digital Warrington has officially closed after plans to shutter the UK digital dev were announced in mid-June.


THQ developer Digital Warrington has officially been closed, the publisher announced today. Last month, THQ revealed the team behind the downloadable title Red Faction: Battlegrounds and Homefront developer Kaos Studios would be shuttered as part of a "strategic realignment."

While Kaos has long since been disbanded, Digital Warrington was only dissolved today due to a UK law which requires a 30 day warning period for company closures. Not only is today exactly thirty days later, today also marks the release of Digital Warrington's final title, Warhammer 40,000: Kill Team.

Develop reports that "close to" 36 employees at the UK studio have been made redundant "effective immediately." The remaining ten employees will be shifted to complete the PSN version of Kill Team, which is expected to launch later this summer.

Out of the ashes of the redundancies, two development start-ups have emerged: D3T and a second, unnamed team. A third "concept" team, dubbed Alien Apple Studios, has also been formed.

Studio founder Colin Bell, meanwhile, has decided to step away from the games industry for the time being. "THQ have done all they can through the consultancy period and have treated staff with respect," he told Develop. Bell then went on to reminisce that the Juiced franchise "has sold over 5 [million]" units, adding that Kill Team is "a great parting product for the studio."

Xav de Matos was previously a games journalist creating content at Shacknews.

From The Chatty
  • reply
    July 13, 2011 3:45 PM

    Xav de Matos posted a new article, Warhammer 40K: Kill Team dev closed.

    THQ developer Digital Warrington has officially closed after plans to shutter the UK digital dev were announced in mid-June.

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      July 13, 2011 4:00 PM

      Awww, man. That is fucking brutal. :|

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      July 13, 2011 4:10 PM

      Wow, that really makes me want to buy the game now that I can be sure none of my money will go to the people who worked hard to make it and most of it will go to those who made the decision to lay them off.

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      July 13, 2011 4:14 PM

      Disappointing that it happened as the game was released.

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      July 13, 2011 4:22 PM


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        July 13, 2011 9:31 PM

        I played the demo and it seemed fun. Not super deep but I don't what I was expecting from a arcade game.

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        July 14, 2011 4:23 AM

        very straightforward and linear path of killing tons and tons of orks. you gain experience points, level up and unlock perks and gear. There were just two marines available for the demo - heavy bolter and a plasma sword-wielding one.

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      July 13, 2011 4:26 PM

      Can you imagine being those last ten people just trudging into work to finish the PS3 version? That must suck.

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        July 13, 2011 4:34 PM

        they must know they're going to be fired when they're finished. I don't think I would have the will to do that. :(

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          July 13, 2011 4:45 PM

          Makes you wonder if they are under any kind of contractual obligation to finish the game.

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      July 13, 2011 6:32 PM

      That should have been the headline!

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      July 13, 2011 7:38 PM

      So no hope of them adding online co-op then?

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      July 13, 2011 8:02 PM


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      July 13, 2011 8:22 PM

      if they keep shutting down developers at this rate there won't be any left.

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      July 14, 2011 4:52 AM

      i'm flipping them the bird SO HARD right now

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      July 14, 2011 6:04 AM

      "The remaining ten employees will be shifted to complete the PSN version of Kill Team, which is expected to launch later this summer."

      Hope those 10 are looking for another job at the same time because they're termination is just a few weeks away.

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      July 14, 2011 7:17 AM

      Why do they bother saying things like "close to" 36 employees, why not just say the exact number?

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        July 14, 2011 7:28 AM

        well, one of them was missing an arm and a leg, so it wasn't exactly a whole person

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          July 14, 2011 7:55 AM

          It's also possible they had a baby working there. Babies don't count as real people.

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        July 14, 2011 8:29 AM

        They had to check last years taxes, so there's probably been some + / - since then.

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      July 14, 2011 7:54 AM

      What the hell?? These guys just released the game yesterday! Can the prisoners receive a final meal at least before swinging the executioner's axe? :(

      It sounds like these guys had shit luck with publishers according to their Wikipedia page:

      Juice Games' most anticipated game, Juiced, was released around May/June 2005 after much delay. Juiced was originally going to be released in November 2004, but its publisher, Acclaim, went out of business and the game went into limbo for a month before being picked up by THQ and published, when the game received mixed response.

      Set up in 2003, Juice Games has also launched mobile and interactive TV games, according to their website.

      In 2005, Juice Games won the "Best New UK/European Studio" from the Develop magazine awards.
      Juice Games released Juiced 2: Hot Import Nights, for release on PC, PSP, PS2, PS3, Xbox 360, and Nintendo DS in late October 2007, to healthy critical acclaim. A demo for the Xbox 360 version was released on Xbox Live Marketplace on 19 July 2007. A second, multiplayer demo appeared on 14 September 2007.

      Juice Games is currently based in one office in Warrington, UK, and employs over 40 staff. Over 30 staff were laid off as part of THQ's reorganisational operations on 3 November 2008 - this was due to the project the studio was working on was seen by THQ executives as a 'risk' (in line with the rest of the company's family friendly identity). This was revealed to be a project called Stormbirds, featuring a range of customisable jet fighters through a Realtime:uk produced CG video.

      In early 2010, their website advertised for staff to work on "an unannounced arcade racing game".

      In February 2010, THQ announced Juice Games would be part of a reshuffle, and would now bear the title THQ Digital Warrington. It is said 60 members of staff face redundancies between THQ's US Rainbow studio and Juice Game's studio.

      On 11 August 2010, THQ announced THQ Digital Warrington are working on "Red Faction: Battlegrounds" for Xbox Live Arcade and PlayStation Network.

      The closure of the studio was announced on 13 June 2011

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      July 14, 2011 8:06 AM

      That kinda makes me not want to buy it. :|

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