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Blitz is closing


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Official statement on their website: http://www.blitzgamesstudios.com/

Award-winning and highly respected UK independent developer Blitz Games Studios announces that it has ceased trading this morning after 23 years.

Existing management have made every effort to seek avenues for new contracts and external investment but have been unable to secure enough funds to sustain the business in its current form.

However, two of the developer's current projects are self-sustaining financially so Blitz senior management will be forming a new company to service these clients and safeguard approximately 50 of the 175 jobs being lost today. More details on this new company will be released shortly.

In addition, Oxford-based developer Rebellion are also in close talks with Blitz management to potentially hire some of the remaining staff. Any other prospective employers are invited to contact Blitz at philipoliver@BlitzGamesStudios.com for details of any staff now seeking work.

Blitz Games Studios Co-Founder and CEO Philip Oliver issued the following comment:

We have managed to weather numerous storms over the last two decades that have sadly seen the demise of many of our friends and colleagues across the industry, but the run of problems we've had to face over the last year is unlike any we've seen before. Frustrations with clients, the global economic crisis, and more than our fair share of simple bad luck have all conspired against us and we are no longer able to continue trading.

It has been an absolute honour to lead such an extraordinary group of highly talented people who have consistently pushed boundaries and created amazing games that we've been hugely proud of. We've been humbled by the loyalty and commitment that they've all shown over the last 23 years and we would like to express our heartfelt thanks to all of our staff, past and present, for their years of loyalty, their creative drive and their commitment to Blitz and to us.

We have done all that we can to make Blitz a success, and we have come frustratingly close in recent months. Major clients have felt unable to commit to investment in significant projects, others have changed strategy whilst appearing committed, and others have been slow to commit at all all of these things have continued to hurt our finances. We have also sustained the business for some time with our personal savings but even those reserves have now been exhausted.

We'd like to publicly thank Chris and Jason Kingsley from Rebellion for their support and friendship during this time they are acting incredibly honourably and helping us to find new roles for as many of our staff as possible. They began their careers in games at around the same time we did and epitomise the positive and supportive culture of long-standing game developers in the UK.

We wish the very best of luck to all the staff who are sadly leaving us today and thank them again for their drive, creativity and enthusiasm. They, like us, are passionate about games, and we call on the rest of the industry to capture their passion and continue the careers of some of the most talented young creatives in the country.

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They made Blitz Basic didn't they? Which was my first venture into programming. And I think they published a few Amiga games too

That was Acid, (and later Blitz Research who are still going) - they were an Australian company (I think?). I used to confuse the two for years...

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damn, I was looking forward to the new Bratz game

edit: actually I guess they didn't do 100% shovelware, those insane Burgerking games were good.

And not in the UK for some reason which was just crazy. I had to buy my copies from a Gamestop in the US.

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I've always been curious how they have maintained such a large studio for so long whilst never creating hits. I think in the early days their licensed games kept them afloat and would even finance their own projects but for whatever reason none of those projects turned into a popular franchise which they desperately needed. Sincere sadness for those losing their jobs today.

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That's really shitty. I can remember some bad times at Blitz, not getting raises and bonuses because of financial issues and "bad luck" so it's not a new thing I think they must have been sailing close to the wind for a long time now.

But there were good times as well, and good people. Blitz was also the entry point for allot of people into the industry, they employed allot of new graduates and they got valuable industry experience before moving on.

I echo Capwn's sincere sadness for all those guys having a really shitty day today.

Be a few people down the pub today I should think whether its Satchwells, Voodoo, Robins Well.

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Bill Gates' favourite Xbox game.

It's a shame they gave the Sequel to another company really, a good follow up to Fuzion would have been great for Blitz.

I know that there are atleast a few from Blitz on here

I know of one other for definite. But I don't think anyone working at Blitz would be under any illusions about the games, it was often frustrating seeing the way games were taken.

There were two really good in house projects I worked on that could have been great games, one got sidelined into something more generic and never got published and the other never got funding despite what I thought was a really good pitch and some really positive responses.

As developers we all have to work on projects at times that we don't enjoy

It's true and I don't think the business model of doing licensed games is a bad one, it worked for them for a long time, at least to a certain extent.

a studio closure is more often than not, pretty far removed from a reflection on the 'minions' that actually create the games we play.

Right again , there were allot of really talented, passionate people at Blitz. And allot of people that worked damn hard on projects whether they liked the games or not. Especially considering overtime was paid in Pizza!

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Sad times, and best wishes to all who have lost their job over of this.

It's a shame their plans for a new Dizzy game were so ambitious. I would have welcomed a regular release of short sweet Dizzy adventures, across mobile and console platforms. They could have introduced the character to a new generation, and built up enough brand awareness to either secure funding or snag publisher interest for their new vision for the series.

I wonder what will happen to the franchise now. Sold off, or will it be transferred to the new company they're planning to create?

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Not pointing fingers, but please keep in mind that this is a largely UK based forum, and that it is also home to a lot of games industry folks. I know that there are atleast a few from Blitz on here and if I was in their shoes today, reading comments along the lines of "but they made crap games" would probably sour me towards the rllmuk community. As developers we all have to work on projects at times that we don't enjoy, or things happen that are way beyond our control, and that a studio closure is more often than not, pretty far removed from a reflection on the 'minions' that actually create the games we play.

Best of luck to all those affected today, it's a real shame :(

Spot on. The sort of license heavy stuff they've done in the past is exactly the sort of stuff that keeps independents going - sadly we can't all pick up $256million dollar projects!

I don't know if its bad form to link to our job page here?

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I bet the Oliver's will be opening a small mobile studio within a short amount of time. It's easier to close a studio as opposed rather than scale back.

50 people are the lucky ones, wonder what those 2 projects are. Effectively scaling back, but I suppose not doing the sort of work Blitz relied on anymore:

However, two of the developer's current projects are self-sustaining financially so Blitz senior management will be forming a new company to service these clients and safeguard approximately 50 of the 175 jobs being lost today. More details on this new company will be released shortly.

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I went for an interview there and although that they produced a lot of licensed stuff which was kinda' "meh", they appeared to have a genuine enthusiasm for the work which is admirable.

Yeah, I went there for an interview last year, seemed like a nice place to work. I hope those who lose their jobs get picked up.
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