In a post on its company blog, the senior execs at Spacetime Studios have confirmed that the studio will be making 50 per cent of is staff redundant as it can't afford to keep them on while it looks for a publishing deal.
16 of the 32 staff, "some very good folks", will be let go - but the studio wants to help them find work elsewhere, the post says.
Earlier this year, NCsoft withdrew its publishing contract with the studio for its space-themed MMO; Spacetime got the rights to the project back but has since then failed to find a new suitor for the project.
The post explains: "Our company has been entirely self-funded the for the last six months while we tried to find a publishing deal for ‘Blackstar.’ Throughout this period we have held onto our pre-production development team because, honestly, we think they are the best of the best. We have been shopping Blackstar around but - right now, at least – the concept of a SciFi space/ground IP has proven to be a challenge. Our studio cannot survive at its current burn rate without a publishing deal, so we face a necessary (though very difficult and painful) decision. We are scaling down from thirty-two down to sixteen folks in the hopes of developing a pitch, a prototype and another publishing deal.
"We will be letting some very good folks go. They will receive extended benefits and we will be doing everything we can to help them land on their feet again. We consider these people to be the cream of the crop, so if you are looking to staff up your team please drop us a line at email@example.com."