Image: Hangar 13/2K
Hangar 13 can’t catch a break. studio behind Mafia IIIWhich faced multiple rounds of layoffs in the years following its 2016 launch is once again on the chopping block. Kotaku has learned that in addition to a steady stream of departures, developers at the studio’s three global sites have been let go, as well as close to 50 of Hangar 13’s Novato, California office. The news came soon after former studio head Hayden Blackman resigned earlier this month.
“I know it sucks,” Blackman’s successor, Nick Baynes, head of Hangar 13’s Brighton, UK office, told Novato staff at a meeting today, according to a recording. Kotaku, “I’m sorry I’m not there to deliver this message. I’ll be there soon. I know you need some local leadership and structure and we’re working on it.”
According to a source familiar with the decision, of the approximately 87 employees currently assigned to the Novato facility, only 50 will be cut. When Mafia III Originally shipped, the Novato studio had over 100 full-time employees.
A 2K spokesperson confirmed the layoffs in a statement, but would not comment further:
2K is fully committed to the future of Hangar 13 as the studio navigates a challenging but ultimately promising transition period. As part of our ongoing evaluation to align our resources with our goals, we have made some changes that have resulted in the reduction of positions with some associates and the way we separate. These decisions are always difficult. We are working with affected employees at 2K to find new roles in other projects and teams, and providing full support to those who cannot be redeployed, connecting them to industry networks and resources to find new roles. 2K to find opportunities.
G/O Media may get commission
after shipping Mafia III, Hangar 13, which also contains remnants of the 2K check, prototyped many of the original IPs. But the studio faced layoffs in 2017 and 2018, and eventually most of its new projects were cancelled, including one code-named Volt, which parent company Take-Two quietly shut down last November. , despite it already having invested more than $50 million in it. Rapid cancellations left hundreds of developers without a project.
Since then, many of Hangar 13’s developers have been aimlessly shifting from one Take-Two game to another. As Kotaku Earlier this month, the Brighton office is currently leading early production on a new mafia The prequel that will be made in Unreal Engine 5. The game is currently planned to take place in Italy. But Take-Two is also treating Hangar 13 like an “in-source” studio, using it to aid development like its other published games. Tiny Tina Wonderlands, Kerala Space Program 2And marvel’s midnight sun,
Since the developers have completed their work on some of those projects, some have been shifted to mafia The prequel has joined other “Project Hammer”, which Kotaku understands the return of the beloved top Spin tennis series, and is expected to launch before the new mafia, Beyoncé said during the meeting that the plan is to focus almost exclusively on those two franchises going forward for Hangar 13.
A few remaining developers are jumping ship, and now it appears that 2K has decided to call off the rest. It’s unclear what the extent of layoffs abroad are, but Baynes said those affected on the call could still move to other roles within the larger 2K organization.
He said during the meeting, “I hope to have as many of you as possible, but hopefully more and more of you will stay with us and give us some time to make things right and better in the future.” ” “But I understand that it’s probably been a little hard time lately, culminating in some news yesterday.”
A big question is whether there will be more layoffs in the future. But Baynes tried to downplay those fears. “Anyone who is still here, we want you here as part of our future,” he said.
Update: 5/26/22 3:07PM ET: Added comment from 2K.