IGN: ~50 Layoffs at Sony Santa Monica, Project Canceled [Up2: Was Stig's New IP]

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Colin Moriarty said:
Reliable sources have confirmed to IGN that there were layoffs at Sony Santa Monica Studio today. The Sony-owned, exclusive developer – founded in 1999 – is best known for its God of War games. The extent of the damage remains unclear, though there are indications that one of the projects the studio was working on has been cancelled alongside this round of layoffs.
Update: Sony has provided the following statement to IGN, confirming what our sources have told us:

SCEA can confirm that we have completed a reduction in workforce at Santa Monica Studio. This is a result of a cycle of resource re-alignment against priority growth areas within SCE WWS. We do not take these decisions lightly. However, sometimes it is necessary to make changes to better serve the future projects of the studio. We have offered outplacement services and severance packages to ease transition for those impacted.

DarkLordMalik said:

@jonathanhawkins 3m

@GrumpyGamerGuy I'm not sure. But the IP is canceled.

Cyberia said:
I've only heard people mentioning a new IP, where's the reference to Stig?


According to our sources, a majority of layoffs consist of key staff that were working on Santa Monica’s new IP, the project now more or less scrapped into oblivion. While details on the project are scarce, we’ve been told it was a science fiction title not all that far removed from Bungie and Activision’s Destiny, and a very large project at the studio, with sources expressing very positive enthusiasm for the project’s vision and potential. We’ve also been told that after Destiny was formally revealed parts of Santa Monica’s sci-fi project underwent rather significant changes, the original vision apparently quite similar to what Bungie is cooking up, changes applied to distance the two. Based on information supplied, we’re lead to believe the choice to divert Santa Monica’s project away from Destiny comparisons lead to somewhat troubled development, the studio unable to fully get the project back on course, ultimately culminating in its cancellation.

Cory Barlog weighs in:

Damn, hopefully not too many let go. Hope they find new jobs quick.

And hope it wasn't something too awesome that got canned.
I did not expect this. Or maybe I should've. Ascension was just a poor idea. I sure hope they didn't can the NOT God of War project, because by jobe I've had enough of that crap.
Wow, that's unexpected, what with their new site and job openings and whatnots. I wonder if it was a large-scale project (i.e. GoW type) or a smaller indie-like project.
I have a feeling this will become even more prevalent in the near future. To much bloat and bad management in the AAA space and unfortunately the workers are going to be the first to deal with the consequences. Sucks, hopefully they can create a lot more smaller studios and make games.
Doesn't SSM help out a lot of different studios and stuff? Maybe it was just a small time thing they were helping out with and canned it, and not a big project.
Goodbye The Last of Us 2 and any chance of TLoU1 on PS4, I'll never get to experience any of your universe.

Oops, I suck. This Sony world is bewildering to me so far. :)
I can't understand first-party closures/downsizing. Sony's got three platforms they're trying to support - don't they need all hands making as much content as possible?

If it's in response to Ascension - the problem with that game was not with the developer, it was with a franchise that had seen its logical conclusion and was fatigued.
I am betting this was a result of all the stock stuff that happened. I am pretty sure Sony is still slimming down everything company wide. Maybe this was just a bunch of people working on an idie title or something. Hopefully not anything God of War related!!
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