In a story that I can’t but feel somewhat responsible for, more layoffs have happened. League of Geeks, the team behind Jumplight Odyssey and Armello, is seeing a 50 percent of its workforce cut.
Jumplight Odyssey was a game that I played during the Steam Next Fest back in June. I’m normally not into many of the management sim games, but this one stuck with me. Mainly, it was the 80s anime vibe I was getting from it.
Sadly, according to a blog update, Trent Kusters, the studio director, called the cuts a “devastating position” for the team. The layoffs hit the whole studio from the team working on Jumplight Odyssey to publishing and operations departments.
Though our commitment to our beloved starship adventure sim is unwavering, rapidly rising operation costs, a worsening AUD/USD exchange rate, poor Early Access sales, and the unprecedented withdrawal of funding opportunities across the industry, have placed us in a position where, as it currently stands, we are unable to sustain the cost of operations through to the release of v1.0, which was planned for Q2 of 2024.”
Excerpt from blog post written by studio director Trent Kusters
The team is still working on one more patch to make the game feel “complete.
Our goal with this coming update (v0.3.1) is to make Jumplight Odyssey feel as complete as we possibly can in the incredibly short time we have left on the project – including bringing in a couple things we were holding back for v1.0.”
These layoffs won’t be hitting other games that are being made. This includes Solium Infernum which is being released in February. This will also not affect support for Armello.
Your frustrations are also totally valid – the only thing I ask is that you direct them at myself and not the team, they’ve been through more than enough already.
For the next year, League of Geeks will be contributing half of Jumplight Odyssey’s profit to those who lost their jobs. This is provided the game doesn’t pick back up by then.
LoG was literally founded on the belief that those who contribute to our projects should share in the spoils of our success, so it’s important to us that we continue to live that value. It’s at least some way we can honour our friends and colleagues who have given so much to this game, and for new players to support the folks who made it special in the first place.”
While this is definitely sad news, this is one where I can’t blame the people in charge here. This comes down to extenuating circumstances beyond the studio’s control. It’s one thing if the money was there from record profits and you cut jobs. League of Geeks just ran out of money.
I feel compelled in some way to help out. Maybe I’ll try to pick up the game so at least a little bit can help. If you like management sims with a little bit of anime flair, I recommend you pick it up to.
Maybe we can get it 1.0!