2K Marin, developer of the recently-released The Bureau: XCOM Declassified, is laying off a "large number" of employees. A "majority" of the team has been let go, with "the only developers safe from the layoffs" being ones that are relocating to 2K's new studio helmed by Gears of War and BioShock Infinite producer Rod Fergusson.
"We can confirm staff reductions at 2K Marin. While these were difficult decisions, we regularly evaluate our development efforts and have decided to reallocate creative resources. Our goal to create world-class video game titles remains unchanged," a 2K Games representative told Polygon.
However, the scope of the layoffs appear to be significant, with one source telling Polygon that "2K Marin as we know it is closed."
The Bureau: XCOM Declassified underwent a lengthy development, first unveiled as a first-person shooter in 2010. The project was eventually transformed into a tactical third-person shooter--one that received mediocre reviews, in spite of promising gameplay ideas. With the game failing to chart on the NPDs, it's unlikely the game will make up the cost of its troubled, years-long development.
Andrew Yoon posted a new article, Significant layoffs at 2K Marin, developer of The Bureau: XCOM Declassified.
2K Marin, developer of the recently-released The Bureau: XCOM Declassified, is laying off a "large number" of employees.
Such a shame. I loved Bioshock 2. All the best to those affected.
Feels kinda grim, because 2K Marin had a hand in all three of the Bioshock games in one form or another. It's also interesting, considering that 2K Marin was spun off from Irrational, and was originally announced as being formed to "develop original intellectual property"... which never came to fruition.
NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Dec. 17, 2007--Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. (NASDAQ: TTWO) today announced the formation of 2K Marin, a new development studio under its 2K publishing label. Located in Novato, California, 2K Marin will develop original intellectual property, as well as co-develop products with other 2K studios around the world.
The Polygon piece on The Bureau: XCOM Declassified's development is pretty interesting and stirring, in terms of how long the XCOM project went: pretty much the whole lifetime of 2K Marin. http://www.polygon.com/features/2013/8/19/4614410/xcom-the-bureau-development-2006-2013
...and after being a successful "closer" on Bioshock Infinite, Rod Fergusson apparently pitched something to 2K that was big enough for them to build a new studio in the bay area around him. Whereas most of the original leadership and prime talent of 2K Marin had left house years ago, in the middle of XCOM's development and revamp phases.
Rod Ferguson's team consists of ex-S.W. 1313 and Prey 2 team members, so I'm guessing we'll be seeing an ambitious sci-fi game from them in a few years.
It sucks that 2K Marin's new ip never went ahead. Although Bioshock 2 was a brillant game, it felt like they were just getting started. Their priorities shifted from creating original content to saving the troubled XCOM project and assisting with Infinite. I hope we get to hear about what they had planned. I bet it would've been special.