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Free Radical Design closes down

Free Radical Design closes down

Free Radical Design, the company behind Timesplitters and Haze, has officially shut down.

Free Radical Design, the company behind Timesplitters and Haze, has officially shut down today with reports coming from staff that they arrived at work today to find the office locked and security guards preventing access.

According to GamesIndustry.biz it is understood that several key members of staff, including senior executives, had already left the company recently despite previous claims that the developer was doing well.

The closure is inevitably going to be at least partly caused by the commercial and critical flop of the developers last title, PlayStation 3 exclusive Haze.

The company had at least one secret project in development, rumoured to be a new Timesplitters game, as well as an unnamed project being developed with Lucasarts. The Lucasarts project was rumoured to be Star Wars: Battlefront III, which is thought to have been handed to Rebellion Software.

"If something happens in 2009 I'm sure we'll be prepared to comment - but from where I'm sitting, whatever happens is far more likely to be positive than negative," director Steve Ellis told GI.biz just last month.

Just today then we've seen two major companies close and a huge amount of jobs being cut. Is the economy getting you down? Let us know in the forums.

15 Comments

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Redbeaver 18th December 2008, 14:19 Quote
goddamn this is starting to get real depressing...

that said, i'm 100% sure Haze wouldve went better if they released it on PC as well...
liratheal 18th December 2008, 14:35 Quote
Given that Haze was a piece of ****, I'm not shocked.
proxess 18th December 2008, 15:05 Quote
How many of these news have we seen lately?
Paradigm Shifter 18th December 2008, 15:11 Quote
Expect the closure news to get more frequent, too... :(

Anyway... I enjoyed Timesplitters, it was fun. Shame to see them go, even if Haze wasn't all it could have been.
Xir 18th December 2008, 15:21 Quote
"...staff that they arrived at work today to find the office locked and security guards preventing access"

Well thats a nice and decent way of laying off your staff
13eightyfour 18th December 2008, 15:53 Quote
i loved the first timesplitters i thought it was a great game. I had however totally forgot about haze nobody i know bought it and all my friends have got ps3's. Im with Xir here there are better ways to inform your staff that their going to lose the jobs!
Jordan Wise 18th December 2008, 16:06 Quote
^^ just before christmas as well
Veles 18th December 2008, 16:41 Quote
Yeah that's pretty ridiculous, I remember hearing it happening to other games companies that closed down too.
Skiddywinks 18th December 2008, 17:13 Quote
I have to admit, I am really shocked. I didn't see one game bombing taking out the whole company :/

Shame, I love TS. But Haze truly was garbage. Making it PS3 exclusive was not the best of ideas.
CardJoe 18th December 2008, 17:26 Quote
The amount it costs to make a game, the fact of the matter is that one failed game means one failed company.
pizan 18th December 2008, 19:54 Quote
maybe they just closed the doors for an early holiday vacation...lol
Horizon 18th December 2008, 22:02 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by liratheal
Given that Haze was a piece of ****, I'm not shocked.

QFT, I was looking forward to it, they had interesting ideas and promise, then downloaded the demo only to find out the game was anything but good, hollow gameplay and doorknob ai.

TS2 multi-player was fun a hell, if they could have recreated that in the sequel, i'd truly be sad.
Mentai 18th December 2008, 23:43 Quote
Wonder if they would still be open if they had made it for 360 as well. But it is a depressing industry where a single game takes out a company. Weren't some of these guys behind goldeneye on the N64?
[USRF]Obiwan 19th December 2008, 08:31 Quote
and so another PS3 'only' game software company bites the dust...
The_Beast 20th December 2008, 05:51 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xir
"...staff that they arrived at work today to find the office locked and security guards preventing access"

Well thats a nice and decent way of laying off your staff


That would be the worse way to lose a job
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