Crytek USA Collapses, Sells Game IP to Other Developers

We've detailed Crytek's problems in several previous posts, and it's now clear that it wasn't just the company's UK studios that were affected. Crytek announced today that it has officially moved development of its F2P shooter "Hunt: Horrors of the Guilded Age" to Germany -- ignoring the fact that the majority of the US team had apparently already quit the company.

The problem? Just as in the UK, the US employees weren't getting paid. In a separate announcement, Crytek also declared that development of the Homefront series had passed entirely to developer Deep Silver. The company has stated, "On completion of the proposed acquisition, the Homefront team from Crytek's Nottingham studio would transfer their talents to Koch Media in compliance with English law and continue their hard work on upcoming shooter, "Homefront: The Revolution". Both parties hope to finalize and implement a deal soon."

Is Crytek finished?

It's hard to see this as good news for Crytek. The company can make all the noise it wants about moving from a development studio to a publisher model, but Crytek as a company was always known for two things -- the CryEngine itself, adapted for a handful of titles and the Crysis series. Without those factors, what's left?

That's not clear. It would be one thing if the company was moving in a new direction with the kind of warchest that comes from monstrously popular previous titles, but companies that can't make payroll typically can't reinvent themselves in new fields, either -- at least not without slashing headcount 70-80% and completely overhauling the company. I'm not suggesting that Crytek's engine is itself on the chopping block, but companies that can't make payroll can't keep the lights on.

It's not clear what's going to happen to games like Hunt: Horrors of the Gilded Age

It's clear, in retrospect, that Crytek made two major mistakes. The company bet on F2P gaming as a major revenue source when there was zero indication that the concept would sustain the growth of AAA development budgets and it opted to overspend on Ryse, then refused to sell that IP to Microsoft in return for development cash on Ryse 2. The cash crunch problem is very common for game studios -- it's why so many of them lay off staff after major titles are finished -- and Crytek is caught in the teeth of a regular problem.  That's little comfort to the staff and developers -- just because the company found a new funding source in the past few months doesn't mean its out of the woods yet.

It's also not clear what this means for either AMD's Mantle support or the Linux support that was supposed to be baked into future versions of the engine. Again, these are the kinds of capabilities that put feathers in developer caps, but if Crytek is trying to cut costs and maximize revenue, baking in support for alternate APIs and operating systems may not be a high priority.
Via:  Kotaku
CDeeter 4 months ago

Sad news. Sad indeed.

LLeCompte 4 months ago

Seems like they are a far cry from what they used to be. Very sad.

AllenJun 4 months ago

Definitely a crisis after those mistakes.

MikeHoran 4 months ago

sad news

NathanMeters 4 months ago

Okay I thought that their graphics engine was good, but the game replay value was low :(

altshep123 4 months ago

It's wild that even with such a successful engine they couldn't keep it together : ( I'm not familiar with Homefront's work though. What might we expect from them?

JamesBCook 4 months ago

Graphics engine was good. Hate to see them leave. Crysis 1 modding ability was amazing

NateKeen 4 months ago

Take note devs. Graphics don't make good gameplay.

RyanLaberinto 4 months ago

Guess Nvidia didn't have anything to worry about when AMD Mantle/Crytek teamed upped. Sad to see crytek go down in the dumps

inspector 4 months ago

well sad news indeed. They made the wrong choices :/

MADSKILLZ412 4 months ago

This is sad news. I was looking forward to this game as it looks very similar to the Left 4 dead series. Hopefully this game will be continued to be made. Even if not by the original development team. D:

ErnieSturgill 4 months ago

"it opted to overspend on Ryse, then refused to sell that IP to Microsoft in return for development cash on Ryse 2." why..just why..

GlaberdtRivera 4 months ago


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