Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning
Amalur Dev 38 Studios Faces Financial Woes, Lay Offs Reported
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Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning developer 38 Studios has found itself in financial turmoil this week, following loan negotiations with the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation, which the studio owes an overdue repayment of $1.25 million. As a result, 38 has failed to make its staff payroll. None of the 300+ staff at 38 Studios have been paid this week.

Worse still, sources close to Joystiq suggest that former baseball pro, Curt Schilling's studio may have laid off all of its temporary staff and contractors. The last financial report for 38 Studios states that the company employs 379 full-time staff, as well as 34 full-time contractors and 8 interns. Its cheque to the RIEDC bounced recently, due to insufficient funds.

Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning was 38 Studios debut title, an RPG adventure written by RA Salvatore with art from renowned comic book artist, Todd McFarlane. It garnered a generally positive critical reception and has sold more than 400,000 copies in North America alone. However, the fate of 38 Studios hangs precariously in the balance.

[Via VG247]


User Comments

Forum Posts: 169
Comment #1 by Arron114
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 04:57:29 AM
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I enjoyed Kingdoms. The issue I had was the story was lost in the countless side quests, Which makes you wonder why they bothered paying so much for a world class author.

Also makes you wonder who they paid first. Looking at this it wasn’t the staff!

Forum Posts: 463
Comment #2 by M1 Punk
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 04:59:33 AM
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No chance off EA stepping in and helping them out? I mean instead of spending 100 mil. on marketing certain games, they should manage to do it with only 98 mil. in the future right?

Forum Posts: 45
Comment #3 by 123yhman
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 05:00:30 AM
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Unlucky I guess for them /: played the demo for that game but really didn't like the look of it at all

Forum Posts: 813
Comment #4 by XxStuartxX 1990
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 05:01:13 AM
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Great game, sad to hear the studio is struggling.

Yet certain companies can spill out nothing but shit and still be fine, its pretty sickening.

Forum Posts: 5
Comment #5 by HVAC Techie
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 05:01:43 AM
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I hope they pull through. It's never good to see a game company eat the dust... Black Rock Studio anyone?

Forum Posts: 178
Comment #6 by Blue Thunder28
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 05:09:03 AM
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What a shame...

Forum Posts: 406
Comment #7 by Skititlez
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 05:10:15 AM
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Here's hoping a company like EA will step in, buy the studio, and handle their debt before more layoffs occur.

Forum Posts: 553
Comment #8 by Hansathan
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 05:29:03 AM
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Honestly, if EA has anyone in PR with half a brain, they will step in and help the studio. They have a very promising new IP in KoA, and a developer in 38. Would be foolish to throw that I want another game by them in the future.

Forum Posts: 108
Comment #9 by Slayinfool
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 05:30:11 AM
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Found it impossible to follow the story in this game.

Forum Posts: 10
Comment #10 by onidemon
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 05:40:35 AM
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I really hope they survive as KOA was brilliant. Hopefully they've made a lot of dosh from the DLC as well as so far both bits have been excellent

Forum Posts: 1329
Comment #11 by FFFreak1129
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 05:45:48 AM
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Sad news. I hope those workers can find other jobs soon.

I'm really liking this game. Its a shame more people did not buy it. Its funny, people say there is too much content in this game, too many sidequests. But then they complain when a game is too short, or when an RPG is not long enough. There's no pleasing some people it seems.

Forum Posts: 169
Comment #12 by Arron114
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 05:56:11 AM
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@11 People were commenting , not complaining. That the main plot is hard to follow due to the emphasis on side quests.

Don't be so quick to jump down peoples throats.

Forum Posts: 152
Comment #13 by Russman
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 05:59:17 AM
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quick everyone go out and buy the game and dlc!! Don't let another good and upcoming studio go under :-(

Forum Posts: 222
Comment #14 by Brengun
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 05:59:28 AM
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This is not good, and I thought they had plenty of money because of Schilling's involvement. I hope they can sort something out for the sake of their staff at least.
I agree with the comments on the story though, I can't believe someone as good as Salvatore wrote this because the main story is mostly nonsense. Everytime I have a conversation with someone I want it over as quickly as possible. Somebody said something about someone who I sad? Nope because I'm not even sure who half these people are...

Forum Posts: 1582
Comment #15 by Baihu1983
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 06:08:35 AM
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MS could do with a new studio and give them the backing to continue the series.

Forum Posts: 44
Comment #16 by Solomon Fuere
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 06:10:05 AM
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So much for that online pass.

Forum Posts: 1593
Comment #17 by H0p3sfalL
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 06:19:43 AM
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"former baseball pro, Curt Schilling's studio "

That's the firt problem right there.

Forum Posts: 3223
Comment #18 by DecadentBeaver
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 06:41:31 AM
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Its a shame another Dev is in financial trouble. Especially when its a new game that's come out and not a rehash of the previous years installment. This will put off other Devs with trying a new idea in case the same happens to them.

Forum Posts: 553
Comment #19 by Hansathan
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 07:12:41 AM
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@17 How is that the problem? Curt is a lifelong gamer, and RPG addict. He used to stay in the hotel rooms/visiting team clubhouses when he was on road trips and play RPGs as a way of staying out of trouble in big cities. He had the financial foresight to save money and start his own studio that makes his favorite brand of games.

Forum Posts: 6
Comment #20 by HammersMark
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 07:30:25 AM
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This is bad news :(

Forum Posts: 125
Comment #21 by ebin
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 07:43:14 AM
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@19 Wrong. Schilling used little of his own money. He received a loan from Rhode Island and made sure to pay himself back with some of that money. Now they are basically going to default on that loan and taxpayers of Rhode Island get to foot the bill.

there are a few articles on that site going into greater detail.

Forum Posts: 1635
Comment #22 by HugTheBear
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 07:46:43 AM
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Didn't like Curt Schilling as a player (Yankee fan). But, I was rooting for him and his video game studio. KofA was a fun game, didn't like the story, but it was fun to play. Hopefully they don't go under. If their first game was that good, I'd like to see some more games from them.

Forum Posts: 50
Comment #23 by NickoB1
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 07:51:41 AM
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Shame to hear this but ~400 staff sounds like a lot for a studio which has only released 1 game

Forum Posts: 19
Comment #24 by glitch12
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 08:40:31 AM
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Much as i dislike EA, i also hope they or another main company will help these guys out, KoA is fun (especially the dead kel DLC) and deserves a chance to keep goin with more DLC or the rumoured MMO

Forum Posts: 2
Comment #25 by Latias_On_Vox
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 09:43:05 AM
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I remember when I was younger, and I wasn't aware of these financial woes that game developers had.

I'm going to hold on the memories of sun dogs and rainbows as time writes a premature eulogy.

I never got around to buying this title, but it looked very promising. I heard (what likely the very vocal minority) complaining that it was a terrible game with boring "Fable-esque" combat and awful story.

Forum Posts: 657
Comment #26 by BBowles
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 09:49:33 AM
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I'm shocked that the sales numbers are that low o_O. I thought the game was pretty fun and it got pretty good reviews. With it launching in early 2012 instead of the fall clusterfuck of games, I was sure it'd sell well.

Best of luck to 38 Studios. It was a decent game.

Forum Posts: 632
Comment #27 by Samigi
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 09:53:02 AM
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Shame it's a really fun game would like to see more stuff from good company's like this instead of EA

Forum Posts: 61
Comment #28 by BIRDSdaWORD
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 10:04:55 AM
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@21... You are completely right. I live in RI and there was a big uproar about gambling this states money on this out of town company that was just starting out. RI has one of the highest unemployment rates in the country. Not to mention the massive financial troubles this state is in over ridiculous pension problems. As a gamer since the Atari days this story is more than just another game company and their struggles.

Forum Posts: 469
Comment #29 by francisrossi
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 10:24:13 AM
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I guess their anti-pre-owned plan failed. I at least bought the game new, full price, though.

Forum Posts: 469
Comment #30 by francisrossi
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 10:27:13 AM
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Ooh, he claimed to Reuters he'd put in over $30m of his own money, only for it to turn out he'd only loaned £4m, which he took back from this RI loan. Naughty naughty.

Forum Posts: 39
Comment #31 by Rodeo Legend
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 10:28:54 AM
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That's too sad. Reckoning is a great game. More people should buy it.

Forum Posts: 0
Comment #32 by exoskeleton
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 10:52:22 AM
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haha i had this game too, got 55 gamerscore points, and sold the pile of crap. This game gets really boring after 2 or 3 hours. Boring missions, boring action, they may as well called it Kingdoms of Boredom, so you know what to expect.

Forum Posts: 56
Comment #33 by psycotic wookie
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 10:59:37 AM
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i totally agree with #1 the story got lost with countless,mostly pointless side quests,the game itself and the main story were fun to play,

sad to see a new developer go out of business aswell when so many big developers turn out crap games on a regular basis

Forum Posts: 225
Comment #34 by combustible lemon
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 11:51:28 AM
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EA will just leave the studio to die because it didn't make generic shovelware

Forum Posts: 7
Comment #35 by RancidSkank
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 12:25:47 PM
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I feel partially responsible as I haven't bought it yet :(

Forum Posts: 182
Comment #36 by Ephidel
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 12:42:13 PM
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I agree with #35, but I'm still waiting for a GOTY edition or something like it. I want the game, but I do not have the time or the money right now. I hope 38 Studios can weather this economic turbulence.

Forum Posts: 11
Comment #37 by Neomalysys
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 02:39:57 PM
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This is when I actually want EA to buy out a company. Or at least make them a member of EA Partners.

Forum Posts: 553
Comment #38 by Hansathan
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 03:55:50 PM
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@21 Just because he had a loan, doesn't change anything I said...he still used some of his own money. My comment was based on the ignorant person who wrote "former baseball pro, Curt Shilling's studio...that's the first problem there".

@32 "Kingdoms of Boredom"....GOOD ONE! Honest to God, thanks for that. I don't know how I could have gone through today without reading such a well thought-out joke.

Forum Posts: 0
Comment #39 by Hump2death
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 06:39:02 PM
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Who the fuck would want to work for EA, Activision is where it's at!

Forum Posts: 127
Comment #40 by Isanox
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 07:32:45 PM
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I own and am currently slugging thru the game. It's a MMO turn single player game.
Very very tedious game.

Forum Posts: 647
Comment #41 by Nei Debrusc
Friday, May 18, 2012 @ 10:54:57 PM
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Might have to download the DLC now, in case the company tanks and they take them off Xbox Live.

Forum Posts: 215
Comment #42 by Restricted-Access
Saturday, May 19, 2012 @ 04:08:24 AM
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I've got a limited gaming budget (I even had to sell a couple of games to pre-order GRFS)... so I was going to pick this one up a little later this year (end of summer, possibly).

Now with the possibility the developer may go under... I'm thinking the same thing as #41: GET THE DLC WHILE YOU STILL CAN! I really enjoyed the demo and was looking forward to buying the game. Now I might have to put the cart before the horse, and buy the DLC first, game... a little later!!!

Forum Posts: 5
Comment #43 by ServbotNamedSxE
Saturday, May 19, 2012 @ 10:01:38 AM
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Kingdoms of Amalur become one of my favorite games shortly after playing it, the combat is very fun! I find it more fun then Skyrim (mind you this is my opinion and im allowed to have one).

It really sucks hearing about its dev studio going through financial trouble so I truly hope 38 Studios finds a way to get past this money problem and continue on to make more great RPGs in the future!

Forum Posts: 14
Comment #44 by muckypup75
Saturday, May 19, 2012 @ 05:18:58 PM
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As a yankee fan all i can do is smile. As a gamer all i have to do is look at the product and think, No money means you didnt make the cut as a company. Marketing is everything.

Forum Posts: 20
Comment #45 by SageRuffin
Saturday, May 19, 2012 @ 09:12:13 PM
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I'll be damned - I thought this was entirely EA's doing. Still a shame in the grand scheme of things. They had a bit of promise.

Forum Posts: 1
Comment #46 by Jigsaw0097
Thursday, May 24, 2012 @ 04:53:53 AM
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Seriously this developer deserves success. KoA was an amazing game and I would love to see more games in this universe in the future. Please for the love of god EA help out your freaking developers!!!

Forum Posts: 55
Comment #47 by Tomtam
Thursday, May 24, 2012 @ 05:09:39 AM
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I recently bought this game and I'm currently playing it. I like the game a lot, this is disappointing news...

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Game Info
38 Studios
Electronic Arts


US February 07, 2012
Europe February 10, 2012

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