Daybreak confirms yesterday’s layoffs and ‘realignment of the company into separate franchise teams’

    
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Yesterday, we reported on the sad news that MMORPG company Daybreak Games had suffered yet another round of layoffs. As developers began weighing in on Twitter and Reddit with their farewells, it became clear that the PlanetSide team had been heavily hit and that the EverQuest or EverQuest II teams had emerged relatively unscathed.

We still don’t know how many people were let go, but Daybreak did finally issue a statement (to Gamasutra, not to its players).

“We are taking steps to improve our business and to support our long-term vision for the existing franchises and development of new games. This will include a realignment of the company into separate franchise teams, which will allow us to highlight their expertise, better showcase the games they work on, and ultimately provide tailored experiences for our players. Unfortunately, some employees were impacted by this effort, and we’re doing what we can to support them during this challenging time.”

The “realignment of the company into separate franchise teams” line should be leaping out at you, as this past summer, the studio registered multiple websites and trademarks for Darkpaw GamesRogue Planet Games, and Golden Age Studios, plus it registered a new Daybreak Game Studios LLC. MMO players had widely speculated that a split of the studios was on the way.

Interestingly, Theoryforge’s Scott Anderson noted that Daybreak has once again started registering trademarks: Just yesterday, the company set up yet another a new Twitter account and filed a trademark for Dimensional Ink Games.

Daybreak, as readers know, has been a bit of a mess under its bizarrely obfuscated current ownership after being sold off from SOE in 2015. Just in the last year, it’s suffered multiple rounds of layoffsproject closures and cancellations, a huge esports financial scandal, and investment moves that looked pretty desperate. More recently, it’s been pouring love into EverQuest, EverQuest IIPlanetSide 2, and DC Universe Online; polling for a new fan event; talking up the future of EverQuest; and pushing PlanetSide Arena to early access (though it hasn’t gone over too well).

Source: Gamasutra, Twitter. Thank you so much, Scott!
Update 10/16/2019
More filings:

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Suikoden

I think this is great. Let DCUO do its thing under Golden Age Games and let the others do what they want.

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Nimsul

It’s sad when a company’s only real claim or purpose is supporting the games created under SOE while simultaneously being 100% committed to failing at every attempt at IP development.

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Armsbend

Good riddance.

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Triona Falconer

I would have gone back to EQ2 a couple years ago if it weren’t for the current owners. Still miss playing, just not willing to support such a company. As others have said, I’m hoping and praying the EQ line ends up in capable/respectable hands.

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Lord Klaus

Nothing good will come from these morons. The only good thing is that they will probably sell the various IP separately. Maybe someone good enough will acquire the Everquest franchise and decide is good to bring back something like “Everquest Next” (and maybe also Landmark).

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Jokerchyld

Called it in yesterday’s article here. They will split up the IP making them easier to sell, seeing EQ having higher value than say PS2. Depends on who the buyer is before I can start speculating if this is good or bad.

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flying_dutchman

I’ve said it before but Daybreak is the chop shop of the video game world.

They take mid-ranged games, and suck all the profit they can out of them in the short-term by destroying them.

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Denice J. Cook

So I take it the Rogue Planet Games trademark won’t be going anywhere anytime soon now. Maybe that one was originally created because they were hoping Arena would take off.

Dimensional Ink sounds like a card game or a board game.

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Vitor Braz

So, they are “improving their business” and “supporting their long-term vision” by firing people, sounds like a great plan.

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Paragon Lost

Should be Dysfunctional Games and not Dimensional Games.