After a year of financial hardship, Crytek is closing its studios in Hungary, Bulgaria, South Korea, China, and Turkey, the developer said today. Crytek says they plan to “refocus on its core strengths of developing innovative games and game-development technology.”
This news comes after months of late and missing employee paychecks at the multinational developer, which will now retain only two studios, in Frankfurt, Germany and Kiev, Ukraine. In a press release, Crytek said that they’ve “put plans into action to secure jobs and to ensure a smooth transition and stable future” for those who will lose their jobs as part of the studio closures.
Crytek, best known for games like Crysis and Ryse (and, more recently, VR games like Robinson The Journey), has been late to pay staff since May, sending paychecks weeks or sometimes months late throughout 2016. Last week, they finally paid staff for October, according to people who work there. But Crytek staff have been leaving in droves, sick of late payments and poor communication—much like what happened in 2014.
The rumor among Crytek staff (passed along to Kotaku) is that the company also sold the free-to-play game Warface and its sequel to the Russian publisher Mail.ru.
“Undergoing such transitions is far from easy, and we’d like to sincerely thank each and every staff member – past and present – for their hard work and commitment to Crytek,” said Crytek managing director Avni Yerli in a press release. “These changes are part of the essential steps we are taking to ensure Crytek is a healthy and sustainable business moving forward that can continue to attract and nurture our industry’s top talent. The reasons for this have been communicated internally along the way. Our focus now lies entirely on the core strengths that have always defined Crytek – world-class developers, state-of-the-art technology and innovative game development, and we believe that going through this challenging process will make us a more agile, viable, and attractive studio, primed for future success.”