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Telltale Games confirms a 'majority studio closure,' only 25 employees remain

Update (3 pm Pacific) — Telltale confirms a majority closure: Telltale has now issued a tweet confirming that all but 25 employees have been let go, with the remainder staying "to fulfill the company's obligations to its board and partners."

"It's been an incredibly difficult year for Telltale as we worked to set the company on a new course," CEO Pete Hawley said. "Unfortunately, we ran out of time trying to get there."

Information about the future of current Telltale games, including The Walking Dead: Final Season, was not provided. The full statement is below.

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Original story (1 pm Pacific) — Major layoffs at Telltale: Telltale Games, the studio behind The Walking Dead, The Wolf Among Us, Tales From the Borderlands, and numerous other popular adventure games, has reportedly undergone another major round of layoffs. According to The Verge, the studio has been reduced to around 25 employees, down from a peak of around 400 last year. 

Telltale has not yet commented on the matter, but multiple developers on Twitter have reported losing their jobs. Narrative designer Emily Grace Buck, whose credits include Telltale's Batman and Guardians of the Galaxy games, tweeted for information about game development jobs "for a lot of other amazing people I love dearly."   

Despite its high profile and numerous well-known game series, Telltale has struggled in recent years. It laid off nearly a quarter of its staff in late 2017, and was sued by former CEO Kevin Bruner in June of this year. A Verge report on the studio from March of this year portrayed Bruner's tenure as toxic, chaotic, and creatively stagnant. 

Bruner, Telltale's former CEO, said in a blog post that he is proud of the games Telltale made and the genre it helped define, and "saddened for the people who are losing their jobs at a studio they love."

"I’m also saddened at the loss of a studio that green-lit crazy ideas that no one else would consider," he wrote. "I’m comforted a bit knowing there are now so many new talented people and studios creating games in the evolving narrative genre. While I look forward to those games and new developments, and continuing to contribute, I will always find 'A Telltale Game' to have been a unique offering."

Andy Chalk
Andy covers the day-to-day happenings in the big, wide world of PC gaming—the stuff we call "news." In his off hours, he wishes he had time to play the 80-hour RPGs and immersive sims he used to love so much.