Microsoft Closes Redfall Developer Arkane Austin, HiFi Rush Developer Tango Gameworks, and More

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Microsoft has closed a number of Bethesda studios, including Redfall maker Arkane Austin, Hi-Fi Rush and The Evil Within developer Tango Gameworks, and more in devastating cuts at Bethesda, IGN can confirm.

In an email to staff sent by Matt Booty, head of Xbox Game Studios, Microsoft blamed the cuts on a “reprioritization of titles and resources”. The email, verified by IGN, is below:

Today I’m sharing changes we are making to our Bethesda and ZeniMax teams. These changes are grounded in prioritizing high-impact titles and further investing in Bethesda’s portfolio of blockbuster games and beloved worlds which you have nurtured over many decades.

To double down on these franchises and invest to build new ones requires us to look across the business to identify the opportunities that are best positioned for success. This reprioritization of titles and resources means a few teams will be realigned to others and that some of our colleagues will be leaving us.

Here are the changes going into effect:

Arkane Austin – This studio will close with some members of the team joining other studios to work on projects across Bethesda. Arkane Austin has a history of making impactful and innovative games and it is a pedigree that everyone should be proud of. Redfall’s previous update will be its last as we end all development on the game. The game and its servers will remain online for players to enjoy and we will provide make-good offers to players who purchased the Hero DLC.

Alpha Dog Studios – This studio will also close. We appreciate the team’s creativity in bringing Doom to new players. Mighty Doom will be sunset on August 7 and we will be turning off the ability for players to make any purchases in the game.

Tango Gameworks – Tango Gameworks will also close. We are thankful for their contributions to Bethesda and players around the world. Hi-Fi Rush will continue to be available to players on the platforms it is today.

Roundhouse Games – The team at Roundhouse Games will be joining ZeniMax Online Studios (ZOS). Roundhouse has played a key role in many of our recent game launches and bringing them into ZOS to work on The Elder Scrolls Online will mean we can do even more to grow the world that millions of players call home.

With this consolidation of our Bethesda studio teams, so that we can invest more deeply in our portfolio of games and new IP, a small number of roles across select Bethesda publishing and corporate teams will also be eliminated.

Those whose roles will be impacted will be notified today, and we ask that you please treat your departing colleagues with respect and compassion. We will provide our full support to those who are impacted in today’s notifications and through their transitions, including severance benefits informed by local laws.

These changes are not a reflection of the creativity and skill of the talented individuals at these teams or the risks they took to try new things. I acknowledge that these changes are also disruptive to the various support teams across ZeniMax and Bethesda that bring our games to market. We are making these tough decisions to create capacity to increase investment in other parts of our portfolio and focus on our priority games.

Bethesda remains one of the key pillars of Xbox with a strong portfolio of amazing games and thriving communities. As we look to the future, there is an impressive line-up of games on the horizon. In 2024 alone we have Starfield Shattered Space, Fallout 76 Skyline Valley, Indiana Jones and The Great Circle, and The Elder Scrolls Online’s Golden Road. As we align our plans and resources to best set ourselves up for success in this complex and changing industry, our teams across Arkane Lyon, Bethesda Game Studios, id Software, MachineGames, ZeniMax Online Studios and the Bethesda publishing and corporate teams will be well-positioned to build new IP, explore new game concepts, and expand on our existing franchises.

- Matt

Developing...
 
Why large consolidation may not be a good thing...

Must feel depressing over there now, can't imagine.

Sucks to hear.
 
Big yikes. Outside of Redfall, Arkane Austin was a good developer. And the decisions I close tango game works after the successful hifi rush is mind boggling.
 
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Reactions: Viktor and karmakid
And if you do get bought you make sure they have to release you rather than close if things sour.
 
This might be the most awkward year for a fanfest….. that could explain one reason as to why there’s gonna be a smaller pool of winners, besides the change in venue
 
Confused Parks And Recreation GIF


Well, I am going all in on PlayStation now. Seals the deal.
 
From Studio/Co-Creative Director @ Arkane Lyon







He's Twitter ranting and he does not seem happy.


Yes everyone is laying off and closing studios left and right but to close a studio that just released one of the best new Xbox IPs in years is a big question mark for sure.

I'm glad X allows these individuals to at least rant about it and show the world their thoughts and feelings.
 
IGN received an email that was sent to staff by Matt Booty, the head of Xbox Game Studios, which attributes the shutdowns to “reprioritization of titles and resources” to focus on “high-impact” games. The full email as published by IGN reads as follows:

Today I’m sharing changes we are making to our Bethesda and ZeniMax teams. These changes are grounded in prioritizing high-impact titles and further investing in Bethesda’s portfolio of blockbuster games and beloved worlds which you have nurtured over many decades.

To double down on these franchises and invest to build new ones requires us to look across the business to identify the opportunities that are best positioned for success. This reprioritization of titles and resources means a few teams will be realigned to others and that some of our colleagues will be leaving us.

Here are the changes going into effect:

Arkane Austin – This studio will close with some members of the team joining other studios to work on projects across Bethesda. Arkane Austin has a history of making impactful and innovative games and it is a pedigree that everyone should be proud of. Redfall’s previous update will be its last as we end all development on the game. The game and its servers will remain online for players to enjoy and we will provide make-good offers to players who purchased the Hero DLC.

Alpha Dog Studios – This studio will also close. We appreciate the team’s creativity in bringing Doom to new players. Mighty Doom will be sunset on August 7 and we will be turning off the ability for players to make any purchases in the game.

Tango Gameworks – Tango Gameworks will also close. We are thankful for their contributions to Bethesda and players around the world. Hi-Fi Rush will continue to be available to players on the platforms it is today.

Roundhouse Games – The team at Roundhouse Games will be joining ZeniMax Online Studios (ZOS). Roundhouse has played a key role in many of our recent game launches and bringing them into ZOS to work on The Elder Scrolls Online will mean we can do even more to grow the world that millions of players call home.

With this consolidation of our Bethesda studio teams, so that we can invest more deeply in our portfolio of games and new IP, a small number of roles across select Bethesda publishing and corporate teams will also be eliminated.

Those whose roles will be impacted will be notified today, and we ask that you please treat your departing colleagues with respect and compassion. We will provide our full support to those who are impacted in today’s notifications and through their transitions, including severance benefits informed by local laws.

These changes are not a reflection of the creativity and skill of the talented individuals at these teams or the risks they took to try new things. I acknowledge that these changes are also disruptive to the various support teams across ZeniMax and Bethesda that bring our games to market. We are making these tough decisions to create capacity to increase investment in other parts of our portfolio and focus on our priority games.

Bethesda remains one of the key pillars of Xbox with a strong portfolio of amazing games and thriving communities. As we look to the future, there is an impressive line-up of games on the horizon. In 2024 alone we have Starfield Shattered Space, Fallout 76 Skyline Valley, Indiana Jones and The Great Circle, and The Elder Scrolls Online’s Golden Road. As we align our plans and resources to best set ourselves up for success in this complex and changing industry, our teams across Arkane Lyon, Bethesda Game Studios, id Software, MachineGames, ZeniMax Online Studios and the Bethesda publishing and corporate teams will be well-positioned to build new IP, explore new game concepts, and expand on our existing franchises.

f*** off.
 
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I enjoyed Redfall.

But just remember the studio wanted MS to cancel it.
 
Why are we dredging up year old tweets?

Because it calls into question what exactly do studios under MS need to do to stay solvent. Jez pointedly asked a little over 12 months ago what was the metric for success for an xbox game, specifically Hi-Fi Rush. And Greenburg responds that for them and the players, it hit every key measurement and expectation. If that's the case why shut down a studio that met your measurements and expectations? Their words aren't matching their actions.
 
The HiFi Rush studio shut down is the one that makes zero sense. They are everything MS been striving for in recent years.
I feel like they’ll just end up with Mikami, but he started several times that he was confident in the new creative leads to carry the torch 😿 so who knows, maybe they’ll start a new studio