WildStar suffers major round of layoffs

    
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But robots.

Update: WildStar has allegedly suffered a massive round of layoffs as part of a “reorganization”; some sources suggest as many as 60 70 people may have been laid off from Carbine today. The update is at the bottom of the post.

WildStar’s CRB Hotspur is apparently no longer working for Carbine, according to Twitter. He was WildStar’s technical and systems designer.

We have not yet been able to confirm whether his departure is part of a larger wave of layoffs. Confirmed. We welcome more information from former employees. Multiplayer Systems Lead Brett Scheinert left last week.

In even more sobering WildStar news, former Carbine Product Director Mike Donatelli told twitter followers that he’d been diagnosed with a rare form of blood cancer:

Donatelli seemingly ceded his role to Chad Moore in February. We wish all the best to him and his family.

Source: Twitter, twitter via Reddit. Thanks to everyone who sent this in.
And now the rumors begin. Former WildStar Community Manager Rey suggested over 60 70 people might be “affected”:

NCsoft’s Omeed Dariani announced a “reorganization” on the official site, saying the cancellation of the Chinese launch necessitated layoffs and promising that Carbine remains “committed” to the game.

Earlier this morning, Carbine Studios completed a reorganization of its operating structure. Moving forward, the studio will focus on operating and updating WildStar as a live game in the US and Europe. As part of this change, the studio has canceled its plans to bring WildStar to China.

Unfortunately, as a result of these changes, we’ve had to reduce staff. These cuts are directly tied to WildStar’s evolution from a product in development to a live title, to the cancellation of work to bring WildStar to China, and to the overall performance of WildStar since launch in 2014.

These kinds of decisions are exceptionally difficult. The talented and passionate professionals who are impacted by these cuts have been valuable team members and respected colleagues. We wish everyone well for the future and will be providing severance and employment search assistance.

As for WildStar, we remain committed to the game. Over the next few weeks and months we will deliver a significant update to the game, kick off a variety of community events, and continue our work on new content that we will talk more about in the near future.

Update: Polygon claims unnamed sources who claim the game is due to sunset.

However, reports Polygon has received from sources close to the studio paint a grimmer picture. While NCSoft’s statement didn’t provide exact numbers, we were told that more than 70 people have been let go from Carbine, as much as 40 percent of the studio’s total workforce. Furthermore, sources tell us it was made clear to remaining employees that they should expect additional layoffs in the coming months. “Those remaining only have a couple months left before Wildstar ‘coasts into the sunset,'” one source told us. All of the sources we spoke with asked to remain anonymous.

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Narq
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Narq

Maybe another company will buy it and keep it running, like Daybreak did with Sony. Keeping games like Everquest Next…. oh wait. Nevermind. R.I.P Wildstar.

MetaDune
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MetaDune

Kevin_G boots2 A lot of people would too when you have a studio that spent 5+ years and 100 of millions of dollars on it and it’s not doing that well.

dorn2
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dorn2

Zenchii Vladamyr dorn2 
Yep you can go even further and point out that LFD and good dungeon gear was the peak of the peak for WoW.  LFR was actually a horrible move for them.  Moving the focus away from dungeons and wellfare epics has killed them.

dorn2
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dorn2

Vladamyr dorn2 
What do you want me to do?  Create numbers out of my ass?  Companies don’t release info.  I can’t go up to Carbine and ask them “Just what percentage of players actually finished a dungeon?” 

I can only make a reasonable guess by playing with a large group of people and observing different factors.  Did they quit when they were leveling?  Did they play like mad then slowly quit after they hit the dungeons?  Etc.

My observations are that two things happened. Something like half the people quit because the start of the game had some flaws.  The people that didn’t quit though were rabid.  They LOVED the game.  When people got to dungeons though it just caved in.

It was an intense and obvious sharp divide that caused players to quit.  Even in a fairly high end guild I watched 90% of the max level players quit after numerous wipes.  I was more persistent and kept trying but the situation repeated itself over and over.

I’m sorry you can say “ancedotal evidence” and blah blah but this was just TOO obvious.  The people who actually LIKED the game quit because it was too hard.

Kevin_G
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Kevin_G

boots2 Sure its a business, but NCSoft likes to flip the kill switch quicker then most if it is an outside studio.  That is history.

boots2
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boots2

It’s a business. all businesses that have shareholders to report to do the exact same thing

Kevin_G
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Kevin_G

If I ran a game studio, I would never sign with NCSoft.  You are almost guaranteed to have your game shutdown by them if your game does not perform extremely well.  The only games that are truly safe are the ones that they develop in house.  So Blade and Soul for instance should have a long life.

Greaterdivinity
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Greaterdivinity

Whoa, did the comments get nuked? Was at 1k last I checked and now down to 220 >.>

Zenchii
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Zenchii

BKone That gave me a chuckle which is why I’m giving you a like, but It’s starting to look that way in the west, and that saddens me.
 
WoW came out during the MMO genre’s infancy, and not only lasted long enough to see the genre grow in both western and eastern markets, but will also most likely be around long enough to see the genre collapse under it’s own weight here in the west atop a comfy cushion of 5 million subs (as far as we know).
Just think about that for a sec.
Blizzard won, alright. Not sure I like that, though. And I say this even as a current WoW fan. It’s just not good for one company to have a monopoly like this.

Zenchii
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Zenchii

Vladamyr dorn2 Actually, it peaked during the expansion that introduced welfare epics in the first place: Wotlk.
I remember being able to get purples by doing higher end dungeons. That was the first time purples could be commonly obtained outside of a raid. Naturally, people bitched hard.
After wrath, they heard the complaints of the easy difficulty and turned it back up a notch for Cata, the ensuing result was a loss of subs. They haven’t hit 12 mil subs since.