In a statement released on Twitter, Telltale Games announced today that they were closing. With the exception of a small team of 25 employees, all staff has been laid off, effective immediately.
Telltale Games is likely best known for The Walking Dead series; the first season won numerous game-of-the-year awards back in 2012. Since then, however, the studio has been plagued by game engine performance problems. Critics have also been calling out the company, pointing out that the narrative formula used by Telltale had started becoming a little too repetitive.
Still, the closure of Telltale is likely to be a surprise to many, especially given that they are currently in the middle of the final season of The Walking Dead. In 2015, Telltale Games' Tales from the Borderlands series was one of the highest rated titles of the year, earning a spot in the OpenCritic 2015 Hall of Fame. They also appeared to strike a chord with children; Minecraft: Adventure Mode topped many of the iTunes and Google Play charts.
Today Telltale Games made the difficult decision to begin a majority studio closure following a year marked by insurmountable challenges. A majority of the company's employees were dismissed earlier this morning, with a small group of 25 employees staying on to fulfill the company's obligations to its board and partners. CEO Pete Hawley issued the following statement:
"It's been an incredibly difficult year for Telltale as we worked to set the company on a new course. Unfortunately, we ran out of time trying to get there. We released some of our best content this year and received a tremendous amount of positive feedback, but ultimately, that did not translate to sales. With a heavy heart, we watch our friends leave today to spread our brand of storytelling across the games industry."
Telltale will issue further comments regarding its product portfolio in the coming weeks.