Some of my earliest memories of video games are of Maxis made video games. It now seems like memories and the lasting impression of the past is what we will have to last us for the foreseeable future. Electronic Arts confirmed in a statement to the website Polygon that effective immediately the Maxis studio is being consolidated into the venerable Redwood Shores. Many employees will be offered jobs at the newly consolidated Redwood Shores studio or other EA studios around the world. Those who choose not to stay on with EA or are not being offered opportunities at other divisions within EA, there is the promise of generous severance packages and career assistance.
Studio closures have become something of a consistent trend in video games in the last 7 or 8 years. The rise of big budget AAA has ensured that only when you release a title it needs to hit hard every time. Very few teams are given the opportunity to stumble more than once. Bizarre Creations was cut down after the failure of a single title. Silicon Knights only lasted two failures before their shuttering. THQ saw the fall of their entire company after they lost the rights to create licensed games based on Nickelodeon properties and their remaining hardcore titles like Homefront failed to generate massive buzz. Maxis Games had a terrible two-year stretch that saw two entries in their longstanding franchises launch to critical disappointment and the complete failure of EA’s network backbone for SimCity preventing user’s from playing the game at all.
Game development is one of the hardest fields to work in, with some of the least praise heaped upon the talented folks behind their development. This is just another studio to die on the vine due to some high profile mistakes. It surely won’t be the last.
Credit to Polygon.com for the sourcing in this article. All opinions are that of VideoDestruct and the author of this article, David Rockey. You can access the original Polygon article here: http://www.polygon.com/2015/3/4/8149791/ea-closes-maxis-simcity-the-sims