Mafia Studio Hangar 13 Hit With More Layoffs
It’s been a turbulent few years for Mafia developer Hangar 13, with the studio regularly seeing its projects shelved and various employees depart the company. Unfortunately, this trend doesn’t appear to be on the mend as the game studio has now experienced another wave of layoffs across its Novato, Brighton, and Czech Republic offices. According to Kotaku sources, “just under 50″ have left its Novato studio alone out of a former count of 87.
”2K is fully committed to the future of Hangar 13 as the studio navigates a challenging but ultimately promising transition period,” Hangar 13 parent company 2K Games said in a statement to the outlet. “As part of our ongoing evaluations to ensure our resources are aligned with our goals, we have made some changes that have resulted in a reduction of positions and parting ways with some colleagues. These decisions are always difficult.”
“We are doing all we can to work with the impacted employees to find them new roles on other projects and teams at 2K, and are providing full support to those who cannot be redeployed, connecting them with industry networks and resources to find new opportunities outside of 2K.”
The workforce of Hangar 13 being feasibly halved is only the latest in a string of tragic developments at the Mafia studio, most notably in repeated layoffs that occurred in 2017 and 2018. This past month memorably saw company CEO Haden Blackman step down after 8 years to pursue an undisclosed “new endeavor,” replacing the former boss with Nick Baynes, who joined the company as part of the Hangar 13 Brighton office when it opened in 2018.
This mass departure also happens in the wake of a particularly high-profile cancellation in recent months. Described as “Cthulhu meets Saints Row,“ an unannounced AAA open-world IP codenamed “Volt” was reportedly in the works at Hangar 13 since 2017, billed as a multiplayer spin on the sci-fi and superhero genres. However, turbulent development, pandemic-related stalls, and a ballooning $50 million budget eventually landed it on the shelf indefinitely.
Sans “Volt” and a great deal of employees, Hangar 13 is nonetheless expected to have quite a bit on its plate for the future. The same Kotaku report suggested a revival of the tennis-centric Top Spin series is being pursued by the developer, while other rumors have floated plans for players to visit 19th Century Sicily for a Mafia prequel. However, the outlet maintains that the Top Spin game will take priority for the time being. Also, if the studio had its way, a full-on Mafia 4 could potentially be on the plate as well.
What do you think? Are you bummed to see Hangar 13 experience so much bad luck? Would you play a prequel game from the Mafia studio? Let us know in the comments below and be sure to follow Don’t Feed the Gamers on Twitter and Facebook to be informed of the latest gaming and entertainment news 24 hours a day!
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Phone-browsing Wikipedia in one hand and clutching his trusty controller in the other, the legendary Eric Hall spreads his wealth of knowledge as a writer for Don't Feed the Gamers. Be sure to catch his biweekly "Throwback Thursday" segment for a nostalgic look at trivia from the past.