22cans, a British game developer based in Guildford, has suffered a round of layoffs. The studio, founded in February 2012 by Peter Molyneux, who previously worked at Bullfrog Productions and Lionhead Studios, recently announced an undisclosed number of redundancies.
In a statement to Eurogamer, 22cans said that studio is still working on titles in development despite the layoffs.”Unfortunately, due to a number of factors including projects reaching a certain stage in their development, we can confirm that a number of roles at 22cans have been made redundant,” 22cans said. “Development at the studio is continuing, however.”
The company has reportedly promised to help dismissed staff find work elsewhere in the gaming industry. 22cans first game was the experimental mobile game Curiosity: What’s Inside the Cube?, which encountered controversy after the studio promised to share a portion of the game’s earnings with the game’s contest winner.
In 2013, Godus, the spiritual successor to Molyneux’s Populous, raised £450,000 on Kickstarter before being launched in early access form in September 2013. After the contract of the lead developer of the game, Konrad Naszynski, ended on June 28, 2016, work on the PC version of Godus was discontinued.
In February 2016, 22cans released Godus Wars, a new game with a combat-focused real-time strategy mode. In August 2017, The Trail: Frontier Challenge, published by Kongregate, was launched for Android, iOS, macOS, Microsoft Windows and Nintendo Switch.
In February 2019, the studio announced the development of Legacy, a workshop-tinkering industrialist sim inspired by Molyneux’s first game, The Entrepreneur, a 1984 sin about growing a business. The game has players take on the role of small-time inventors working in a garage. No release date has been announced for the game yet.
In an interview with LauraKBuzz last year, Molyneaux admitted to his past mistakes, saying, “The journey that I’ve been on has been learning to take my passion for making games for home computers and consoles, and to turn that into something that could appeal to this incredible audience that’s out there.
“That has been a long, sometimes painful, journey as you know. There’s been some terrible mistakes that I have made, I admit and apologise for those mistakes, but the best way that you improve is by making mistakes and then learning from them. Learning to engage with that audience has been a fascinating thing.”
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