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The Walking Dead: The Final Season

Telltale Games on the brink of closure

Update: Company confirms "a majority studio closure following a year marked by insurmountable challenges."

  • Text: Mike Holmes

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Update: Telltale has shared the following statement over on Twitter:

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 into 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.

Update #2: USGamer's Matt Kim has written on Twitter that The Walking Dead: The Final Season has been cancelled, and that the skeleton crew staying on are going to conclude their work on Minecraft Story Mode for Netflix. As per the statement above, clarification on the studio's other titles will be made in the coming days.

Original: According to multiple reports circulating this evening, Telltale Games is in serious trouble and on the brink of closure. A number of developers have confirmed that they have left the studio, without severance it would seem, and it appears that a considerable number of people have left the company and that certain games have effectively been canceled as a result, including The Wolf Among Us 2 and Stranger Things.

The narrative adventure specialists are currently working on The Walking Dead: The Final Season, itself the concluding chapter of a story that the studio started back in 2012. The Verge is reporting that 25 people remain on the books and will look to conclude that game, but it doesn't sound like any of the studio's other games will remain in the production.

The latest revelations surrounding the studio follow on from reports earlier this year of a toxic work environment at the company, and before that there was also a large number of redundancies made last November. Clearly, all is not well at the studio.

Co-founder and former CEO Kevin Bruner, who recently initiated legal action against the company, wrote of the closure over on his personal blog, describing it as a "very, very sad day".

"I'm mostly saddened for the people who are losing their jobs at a studio they love. And I'm also saddened at the loss of a studio that green-lit crazy ideas that no one else would consider. 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."

We've reached out to Telltale for clarification and will update you with anything we hear back.

The Walking Dead: The Final Season