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Capcom Shutters ‘Dead Rising’ Vancouver Studio, Lays Off About 150

Video game publisher Capcom is closing the studio behind its open-world survival horror franchise “Dead Rising,” it confirmed to Variety on Tuesday.

Capcom Game Studio Vancouver primarily develops games for markets outside of Japan. It’s most notably responsible for “Dead Rising” and the free-to-play game “Puzzle Fighter.” But, Capcom said it’s currently reviewing “the allocation of its development resources that support the production of world-class content.”

“Capcom has been focused on increasing the efficiency and growth of its game development operations,” a rep told Variety via email. “To support this objective, new R&D facilities and annual hiring have been underway at the Osaka headquarters. In consideration of this process, as a result of reviewing titles in development at Capcom Vancouver, Capcom has decided to cancel the development projects at this studio and will concentrate development of major titles in Japan.”

“As part of this overall direction, the Capcom Vancouver studio will suspend operations, effective today, so the current staff will be laid off and the office will be closed.”

About 158 employees were impacted by the studio’s closure. They will receive severance packages for their service, Capcom said, and a skeleton crew will remain in place until January 2019 to finalize the studio’s closure operations and logistics.

“We appreciate the hard work and contributions of all the studio team members in creating unforgettable gameplay experiences for the ‘Dead Rising’ series and ‘Puzzle Fighter,'” the rep said.

Earlier today, Capcom said in a press release it expects to lose about 4.5 billion yen after terminating a number of unnamed projects at the Vancouver studio. Despite the anticipated loss, it’s not changing its forecast for the rest of the fiscal year. This is largely due to the continued success of “Monster Hunter: World,” which launched on consoles in January and on PC in August. That game has exceeded the company’s expectations, selling over 8.3 million copies. Its massive success led to Capcom’s most-profitable first quarter since it began disclosing quarterly results.

Capcom laid off about 50 people from the Vancouver studio earlier this year in an effort to streamline it and gain control over the next “Dead Rising” game, which was over-scoped and understaffed, according to Kotaku. At the time, the publisher also cancelled an unannounced game that was supposedly a third-person action-adventure set in an alternate New York City.

So, what does this all mean for the ‘Dead Rising’ franchise? While Capcom’s rep confirmed multiple titles were cancelled, they said there are no more details to share at this time. “Capcom still owns the ‘Dead Rising’ brand,” the rep said. “No new titles have been announced.”

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