When it rains, it pours. It was only yesterday that we learned All Points Bulletin was being shut down, and today the company that developed it is announcing the closure of their Dundee (read: only) studio. Realtime Worlds was supposedly in talks with many different companies to buy the ill-fated MMO, but over time, it seems that interest dwindled to the point where nobody wanted to touch it with a fifty foot pole.
Despite this, there’s still a small chance that one of the suitors could buy out the studio and resurrect the company, dumping its dirty baggage in the process. After all RTW did develop the original Crackdown, which was a fantastically fun open-world game in its own right. The formula, and the proposed pay scheme, just didn’t seem to translate into massively-multiplayer online gaming.
According to the language being used, it seems as though a small contingent of employees will remain to operate whatever business is left, but development is being cut completely. So says Joint Administrator Paul Dounis:
“We very much regret not being able to find a buyer for APB and by doing so safeguard jobs. Every possible attempt was made to achieve this but in the end no one was prepared to take the game on in its present form, along with unknown problems which they might then encounter.
“We are now looking to try and conclude a sale of the intellectual property rights and platform upon which the game has been built over the next few weeks. There may then still be an opportunity to minimise some of the job losses. We will be continuing to do everything possible to this end.”
We’re already aware of APB‘s fate, but where does that leave their other property, Project My World? As far as we know, the Sim City/Google Maps hybrid is still in the works, having been purchased by an unnamed, American third-party. Of course, such shyness combined with the closing of Realtime Worlds could push whoever holds the rights to quietly shelve the product and never speak of it again.
Our condolences go out to the folks losing their jobs to this fiasco. Things are financially tough right now, no matter where you are on the globe.