Fantasy Flight Games' digital arm, Fantasy Flight Interactive, is so well a thing of the past. Studio boss Tim Gerritsen has announced via the job network LinkedIn that the studio will close as early as next month. Fantasy Flight Games Interactive did not survive long on the market: only around two and a half years after it was founded, it is over again. The closure may have occurred in the wake of redundancies at Fantasy Flight Games. More than ten employees are rumored to have been laid off.
There are no official statements about the reasons for the closure, but the bosses of Fantasy Flight Interactive and Asmodee did not save with acceptance speeches to the developers who were soon to be unemployed. Tim Gerritsen himself wants to help team members find new jobs.
Fantasy Flight Interactive: It'll be over for next month
Fantasy Flight Interactive was not a success story. The development studio was founded by Asmodee in 2017. Tim Gerritsen, former head of Human Head Studios, which developed the video game Prey 2, took over management. With Gerritsen, Asmodee was able to sign an experienced CEO. Before joining Human Head, Tim Gerritsen worked as a studio director at Irrational Studios and was responsible for Bioshock 2 as a producer.
The enthusiasm was great at the beginning: The aim was to implement the Fantasy Flight Games brands as “unbelievable video game experiences”; the developers themselves were fans of video games and board games at the same time.
The prerequisites were good, the market did not seem to cooperate. Probably the lack of success of the Lord of the Rings: Adventure Card Games is the cause of the short-term studio closure. This is all the more tragic because that same game was Fantasy Flight Interactive's first project. The creators may have overestimated the game's potential. Lord of the Rings is a powerful license, but it does not promise automatic success in the highly competitive games industry.
After the test of the Lord of the Rings: Adventure Card Game, critics gave solid ratings and the adventure card game was also largely received positively by the players, even if it was not understood as a playful revelation.
The Lord of the Rings: Adventure Card Game was presented on the before entering Early Access Gamescom 2018 - and in fact the playful framework of the digital card game had at least potential. The title was released for both PC Steam and consoles. The card game apparently did not attract many players: Steam charts reveal that only around 400 players were active at the same time at peak times.
After all: Asmodee Digital has confirmed that the recently released adventure card game for PC and console will continue to be supported.
Layoffs at Fantasy Flight Games
Rumor has it that there were also layoffs of more than ten employees at Fantasy Flight Games and Asmodee North - in customer service, but also in the RPG department. A Reddit users claims to be affected by the wave of layoffs: Accordingly, the reasons are primarily to be found in too rapid growth and expensive licenses, but also in product lines that “eat each other up”. The user himself states that he only publishes his view of things.
Because the role-playing department should also be affected by the layoffs, it is currently uncertain what will happen to the ongoing projects. Books on Legend of the Five Rings and the Star Wars Pen & Paper have been announced but not yet published.
The layoffs may also be a consequence of the acquisition in 2018 by the investment company PAI Partners. Asmodee North's first major restructuring took place shortly after the successful deal.
An official statement from Asmodee is still pending.
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