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Gamestar.de: The vultures are circling over Crytek [Up3: Eurogamer/Kotaku jump in]

DieH@rd

Banned
Dec 9, 2006
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Update:

Kudos to Razyl, here's the info from the article:

*Information is from a half dozen independent sources, according to Yerli "dramatized rumors" from disgruntled ex-employers
*Salaries are paid late and leading employees are sending applications to other studios at home and abroad
*Warface doesn't work outside of Russia, other attempts at F2P were unsuccessful
*G-face was a flop
*The development of Ryse was catastrophic: mere months before release, the title was severely behind, only with additional manpower they were able to finish it
*Disagreements with MS over the ownership of Ryse's IP could be a red flag for other publishers
*Adoption of CryEngine not going as planned, word-of-mouth at GDC was negative
*Too many employees, burn-rate too high (3-5 M euro).
*"The vultures are already circling," says a leading representative for a major publisher.
*Big publishers are not interested in buying outright,would rather wait for bankruptcy, sign the talent and shop the IPs.
*Belarusian Free2Play giant Wargaming is listed as a possible buyer of Crytek
* Avni Yerli says a cash injection for the company is finally imminent. The contract has not been signed yet, but is as good as in the bag. "It's not all great. Our transition to Free2Play studio was not painless. But that is now behind us, "he concludes.
Eurogamer said:
Before E3 one source told Eurogamer staff at Crytek's Sofia office in Bulgaria hadn't received salaries for the past two months.

Eurogamer has also received worrying reports coming out of Crytek UK, which is rumoured to have failed to pay employees on time. Management have been accused by some staff of a lack of transparency over these issues, and many are disgruntled, Eurogamer has heard.

But Crytek may have secured investment and thus its future - in the short term at least. The GameStar report mentions a potential buyout by World of Tanks maker Wargaming, but Eurogamer has heard investment from a Chinese firm may have been tabled.

http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2014-06-23-crysis-developer-crytek-claims-bankrupt-report-is-false
In addition, I've learned that Crytek UK managing director Karl Hilton is leaving his current position. When I reached out, Hilton said he would be moving to a different role within the company, though he had no other details to share.

"With new titles such as Warface and Arena of Fate, Crytek is moving in to self publishing and new business models," Hilton told me. "After 5 years as [managing director] for Crytek UK I am also looking to develop my role and responsibilities in line with these new opportunities at Crytek and I am currently looking at this with the company."

Rumblings about issues at Crytek started in March, when Kotaku got a tip from an anonymous e-mail address:


I am an employee in the Frankfurt studio.

None of us have been paid last month's salary. It is normally paid before the end of the month.
It is 11 days late and none of us have been given an explanation by management.
All we have to go on are rumors.
This is not the only sign of troubles at Crytek.


I responded asking for more information, but never heard back. In the coming months I heard a couple more tips about issues at Crytek, but nothing concrete—until earlier this month.

Three weeks ago, one Crytek UK employee contacted us to say the studio had been missing bonuses, and that they had not been paid since April.

"My reason for reaching out is mainly because there are a lot of people in my situation and it isn't right for a company to not pay staff on time," one Crytek UK employee told me in early June. "People should know that there are a bunch of employees who deserve a better company. These things should not be kept in the dark."

http://kotaku.com/rumors-swirl-about-trouble-at-crytek-1586824777
---

New thread, based on the post of junior member Razyl:

Just junior member and don't know where to post but i thinks its quite interessting.

Gamestar, a german videogamesmagazine, published today a story named "Die Geier kreisen über Crytek" ("The vultures are circling over Crytek") => http://www.gamestar.de/specials/reports/3057060/crytek_krise.html

Short info about it:
  • Crytek got financial problems
  • there are working over 800 employees
  • Microsoft and Crytek talked about Ryse 2, but yet it is not in development, because microsoft wants the trademark and crytek don't want to give it up
  • Reasons for the problems: Free-2-Play & Cryengine not work as well as expected, crysis 3 and ryse aren't big sellers etc.
  • they got saved for now but maybe not forever

The article is only for the gamestar subscription service. I think if homefront, hunt and the moba will fail, then its maybe game over for Crytek.

(sorry for my english, it's not my native language^^)
http://www.neogaf.com/forum/showpost.php?p=117573977&postcount=668

It is important to notice that Crytek has [at least they had before] a lot of non-gaming contracts, where they are using their Crytengine to create demos and simulators for military/architecture and other business uses.

Discuss.
 

Nethaniah

Member
Jun 19, 2013
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Weird, i figured that Crytek was in a very good position despite their games not selling amazingly.

Contracts not working out maybe?
 

Abounder

Banned
Jun 6, 2013
6,890
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Of the popular game engines I think they have the worst deal (no source code)

Time to start another stretch goal for STAR CITIZEN: Save Crytek for $50 million
 

Sickboy007

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Oct 17, 2007
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The article says they were on the verge of bankruptcy in April, before they secured additional funding.
 

DieH@rd

Banned
Dec 9, 2006
35,047
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The article says they were on the verge of bankruptcy in April, before they secured additional funding.
It would be nice if we could get english translation, or at least in depth report from someone that can hunt for additional info inside article.
 
Jun 28, 2013
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Chasing that COD Cow has/had major repercussions. I imagine Ryse being completely remade didn't help either. Homefront should do well though. Open world + Co-op is a good combo.
 

Zeth

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Nov 16, 2007
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Damn, hope they manage to weather the storm. I know Crytek might be one of the least loved devs around here - but there are still great people there and I anticipate playing their next game.
 

Sandwich

Neo Member
Nov 3, 2013
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If only they would finally stop messing around with so much faff and make a proper open-ended gameplay game like Crysis 1 was. The further they move away from that, the less well they do.
 

H4r4kiri

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Dec 3, 2013
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335
Maybe just Maybe they shouldn't go with Microsoft all the way and go Multiplatform. For my Crytek was always a PC/Xbox developer. I am german, but we have to say that their Games were always pretty generic and flat. The 1st Crysis and Far Cry were their best Games, but then they released pretty average games. Maybe they should cut the team size and get good writers for storys etc. ;)
 

Bedameister

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Aug 21, 2013
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So far I didn't see their F2P-strategy work so I'm not shocked that it's not looking to good for them.
I don't know how much money they get from the engine and their contracts with e.g. the military.
It would be sad if they would go bancrupt but I wouldn't really miss any of their games/franchises. Other than Far Cry 1 they never really made a game that I enjoyed and their F2P-strategie didn't interest me at all.
 

scitek

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Damn, hope they manage to weather the storm. I know Crytek might be one of the least loved devs around here - but there are still great people there and I anticipate playing their next game.
They're one of the leading devs when it comes to pushing tech. And Hunt and Homefront 2 both look cool, so I hope they make it.
 

Socky

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Feb 9, 2013
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Good - then maybe somebody can buy the Timesplitters IP with the intention of actually doing something with it.

Aha. Aha-ha.

Sorry, no, really, I wouldn't want to see Crytek fail, but their output recently really has been far from stellar. The Hunt could possibly be good. Nothing else has my interest. They really need a hit. I'm not sure Homefront will be distinctive enough to make any difference, hope I'm wrong.

EDIT:

Are they working on TimeSplitters 4? They should be working on TS4.
Nope. No they aren't. Apparently, Homefront was a much better IP to chase.

 
Aug 8, 2012
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Microsoft and Crytek talked about Ryse 2, but yet it is not in development, because microsoft wants the trademark and crytek don't want to give it up
Ryse? Thats what you want to hold on to? Crytek, listen to me. Just take whatever you get for the trademark. Like seriously, 10 bucks and a diet coke is a good deal.
 

Sickboy007

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Oct 17, 2007
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Does it say how and from where? Was this info already out there before this article?
I can only read the title and subtitle unfortunately. I hope someone with full access to the article will provide a translation of the text.

I remember that they also tried to obtain a particularly big deal from the US military last year, but that fell through because the competition was geared towards the current holder of that contract.
 

IAmRandom31

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Aug 4, 2013
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Yeah if F2P doesn't work then you basically created a game and made no money off of it, not even close to breaking even.

F2P only works if you build a product that engages the person playing it, enough to where they will spend the 3-5$ at a time to get that cool looking piece of gear or to unlock that next plane or tank or whatever else.

If you fail with F2P ... especially one with high fidelity and an advanced engine, it will put you down quickly.

Crytek are masterminds when it comes to building a solid graphic engine, one of the best in this business. But in the business of making great games .. yeah they are pretty close to the bottom.
 

funkystudent

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Apr 3, 2010
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According to Wikipedia they have 796 employees.

Thats a hell of a lot for a company that makes games that dont sell that great and a engine next to no one licences.


Crytek always seemed to be a bit of a anomaly. I never got a clear answer to how much they rely on their military / government licencing. I have heard everything from its their bread and butter to only a small team actually works on that stuff and its not that important.
 

aeolist

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Oct 31, 2006
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According to Wikipedia they have 796 employees.

Thats a hell of a lot for a company that makes games that dont sell that great and a engine next to no one licences.


Crytek always seemed to be a bit of a anomaly. I never got a clear answer to how much they rely on their military / government licencing. I have heard everything from its their bread and butter to only a small team actually works on that stuff and its not that important.
their studios cost relatively little because they're in cheaper parts of the world

it's not enough to keep them going forever but it's how they've lasted this long and expanded
 

kadotsu

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Dec 5, 2008
8,580
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Crysis 1 Crytek was a studio with a design philosophy and engine that would do gangbusters in the current, post DayZ world. The current Crytek will try to get blood from the stone that is the MOBA market and commit financial suicide in the corridor AAA market.
 

Dead Early

Banned
Oct 22, 2013
118
0
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I would shrug this information off with "meh" ordinarily, seeing as crytek has more or less never made a good game.


Except they're the motherfuckers who we stapled Free Radical's corpse to in order to keep it twitching.

Now Timesplitters 4 is even more never going to happen.
 

manual4

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Jan 10, 2014
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why don't they want to give the ryse trademark to ms, you are in financial trouble and dont have money to fund ryse 2 in the first place. give it up.
 
Were I Crytek I would sell Microsoft the license for Ryse given it's a worthless brand as is and they seem to have gotten zero value out of owning Crysis after EA bailed from it.

If they're going to f2p service games that's fine if they figure out their monetization, but you can't run 800 employees on Warface alone, so short term measures need to be taken to stay afloat.
 

dyergram

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Sep 6, 2009
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Not surprised to be honest. Zero hits and multiple expensive games in development. What are they thinking making a home front sequel?
 

scitek

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According to Wikipedia they have 796 employees.

Thats a hell of a lot for a company that makes games that dont sell that great and a engine next to no one licences.


Crytek always seemed to be a bit of a anomaly. I never got a clear answer to how much they rely on their military / government licencing. I have heard everything from its their bread and butter to only a small team actually works on that stuff and its not that important.
I don't think it being their "bread and butter" means it would require the largest team. It's likely where they make most of their money, but if they just license the engine out, it's possible they may only have a small support team dedicated to that side of things.
 

Backfoggen

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Jul 21, 2009
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Making a new Homefront, holding on to the Ryse IP real hard, what the hell are they doing. So weird.
 

Jedi2016

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Nov 10, 2011
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I'm not surprised. They have some very ambitious ideas that they talk about all the time, and more than enough self-praise about how awesome their engine and games are, but talking about things doesn't make them happen.
 

Qassim

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Jul 6, 2012
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Weird, i figured that Crytek was in a very good position despite their games not selling amazingly.

Contracts not working out maybe?
I suspect (if this is true) the problem is they've attempted to grow too big faster than they've actually been able to financially support it. It always seemed odd to me how many studios Crytek has given their output.
 

KaiserBecks

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Jan 24, 2010
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I wouldn't trust anything Gamestar is writing these days. I haven't read their magazine in years and stopped frequenting their website quite a while ago. Lots of clickbait articles and almost mandatory console / Apple bashing. I wouldn't be surprised if this was just some drama article in order to get some "Plus" subscribers. Crytek is technically still an "Indie" studio. Of course they'll be in trouble if several projects will fail.
 

Nethaniah

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Jun 19, 2013
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I suspect (if this is true) the problem is they've attempted to grow too big faster than they've actually been able to financially support it. It always seemed odd to me how many studios Crytek has given their output.
I do remember there being an interview where they stated every Crysis game barely breaking even or something similar which always amused me because it just seemed like they went to consoles for the big bucks and yet the best selling Crysis is still the first (pc version), i hope they keep afloat but they kind of burned alot of goodwill from gamers throughout the years with their weird comments.
 

ambientmystic

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Dec 4, 2012
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How is that transition from PC to consoles working out for you, Crytek?
Lol, this. Their move to console focused development after Crysis 1 remains one of their most baffling ones yet. The game sold decently enough as a PC exclusive. Crysis 2 was such a poor ass PC port with a lack of graphical options and no DX11 renderer until a certain patch was released much later lol.