Telltale Games, the studio behind narrative adventure games such as the recently released The Expanse and the upcoming The Wolf Among Us 2, has reportedly laid off a large number of its staff. Jonah Huang, a former cinematic artist at Telltale, shared the news on X earlier today, writing that the studio quietly laid off "most" of the team in early September.
This is a sore subject, but I feel it necessary to add to the gaming layoff news: Telltale laid most of us off early September. Status of TWAU2, I can't say (NDA).
Now, I focus on what matters to me—my own game, and the following words:
Games industry, we must UNIONIZE.
According to Huang, the team working on The Wolf Among Us 2 was already "very small." Huang stated that those who were laid off “signed an agreement not to cause any harm to Telltale’s business," and that NDA's preventing them from discussing the current status of the upcoming game are currently in effect.
When reached for comment, a Telltale Games representative told GameSpot that the company did not take these layoffs "lightly." The representative also stated that all projects in development are still in production.
"Due to current market conditions, we regrettably had to let some of our Telltale team go recently. We did not take this action lightly, and our commitment to storytelling and finding new ways to do so remains the same. We are grateful to everyone for their dedication along this journey, and we are working to support everyone impacted. All projects currently in development are still in production, and we have no further updates at this time. "
Telltale has yet to elaborate on how many employees were laid off or what their compensation looks like. And while the company claims all projects are still in development, it is not yet known how these layoffs might impact the studio's release schedule.
Unfortunately Telltale Games is no stranger to layoffs. In 2018, the studio was shuttered after all its staff members found themselves suddenly and inexplicably laid off. The studio was re-established in 2019 under new management and appeared to be doing well. In 2019, it announced the highly-anticipated The Wolf Among Us 2 was in the works and scheduled to release in 2023. More recently, the studio released the final episode of The Expanse's first season, as well as made the move to acquire the UK-based production studio Flavourworks.
Telltale Studio is the latest of several game companies to undergo layoffs in 2023. In the past few months, hundreds of developers across Epic, Embracer, Blizzard, BioWare, CD Projekt Red, and several other studios have been laid off, making for one of the most tumultuous years in the gaming industry to date.