Immortals of Aveum developer Ascendant Studios has made a difficult decision to downsize its workforce, impacting more than half of its employees, shortly after the launch of their debut game.
According to a report by Polygon, approximately 40 individuals have been affected by the layoffs, as confirmed by three developers within the studio. Ascendant Studios, which boasts a team of over 100 individuals, as stated on their website, has seen a significant reduction in its workforce, with estimates suggesting that nearly half of the team has been let go. Additionally, other employees have also been laid off in recent weeks, as disclosed by a former staff member.
The decision to downsize was primarily driven by underwhelming sales, as revealed during a meeting led by Ascendant CEO Bret Robbins. The studio, founded in 2018 with the ambitious vision of creating a groundbreaking “single-player first-person shooter unlike anything the world has seen in decades,” partnered with EA for the release of Immortals of Aveum under its “Originals” banner. The game, which launched on August 22 for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S, and PC, received mixed reviews, with GameSpot’s Immortals of Aveum review highlighting issues such as repetitive combat, a lackluster narrative, and a “challenging-to-master control scheme.”
Unfortunately, it appears that the magic-infused FPS failed to resonate with a substantial audience. A former developer at the studio shared with Polygon that Immortals of Aveum is likely one of EA’s poorest-performing Original titles, although specific sales figures were not disclosed. A glance at SteamDB reveals that the game’s peak concurrent player count on Steam reached a mere 751 shortly after launch, fluctuating between just above 100 and as low as 29 in the past week. These statistics do not bode well for a new AAA release. Polygon suggests that the demanding technical requirements of Immortals of Aveum may have contributed to the low player numbers, potentially preventing many PC gamers from running the game effectively on their machines.