Sources: Bureau XCOM, BioShock 2 Dev ‘Essentially’ Closed

Oh boy. It is officially another One Of Those Days. The diabolical layoff stampede beast of certain doom has struck again, this time allegedly laying waste to the whole of The Bureau: XCOM Declassified and BioShock 2 developer 2K Marin. For now, 2K is only officially saying that there have been “staff reductions” at the oft-beleaguered studio, but sources close to the situation told RPS a significantly more dire tale.

First up, here’s 2K’s official statement on the matter, via Polygon:

“We can confirm staff reductions at 2K Marin. While these were difficult decisions, we regularly evaluate our development efforts and have decided to reallocate creative resources. Our goal to create world-class video game titles remains unchanged.”

Now then, the really, really unfortunate news: all of our sources – who wished to remain anonymous – agreed that 2K Marin is “essentially” done for. If what they said is true, the forecast is looking fairly bleak at this point.

But what happens next? That part is, for the moment, less clear. Multiple sources alleged that 2K will probably give first-in-line privileges to former 2K Marin employees who apply to work at Gears of War/BioShock Infinite producer Rod Fergusson’s new 2K studio in the Bay Area.

Another source, however, made a significantly less optimistic claim:

“A couple of weeks ago, the new 2K team in Novato (the one Rod Fergusson is leading) interviewed and made offers to a small number of 2K Marin team members. I don’t know exactly how many, but it wasn’t a lot. It sounds like everyone who was not offered a position on that team was let go today.”

So then, pretty miserable if true. Admittedly, 2K Marin suffered high turnover on senior-level staff during Bureau’s tumultuous development, but it still houses many talented individuals. At the moment, I’m digging for specifics, and I’ll update the story if I find out more. For now, though, we wish the best to all affected by this sudden, stomach-lurching turn-of-events. And if you’d like to get in touch to provide clarification, feel free. In exchange, I can promise conciliatory hugs and pictures of adorable animals. Stay strong, ladies and gents.


Top comments

  1. Skull says:

    I read about the confused and rocky development this game had only today and I have to admit this comes at no surprise. Hope the developers get a chance to prove themselves soon.
  2. Alexander says:

    I don't know about Bureau, but Bioshock 2 is one fucking awesome experience. Sad to hear this.
  3. JP says:

    To all the folks praising Bio 2 and offering condolences: thank you so much. I was one of the studio's founders, and it really was a special place for a while.

    To anyone affected by the closure: Best of luck with whatever's ahead. I promise you, there is life after XCOM!!
  1. SominiTheCommenter says:

    Good thing they only “evaluated their development efforts”, “reallocated creative resources” and “let some people go”. I was expecting people getting fired and a studio closed.

  2. Tei says:

    Bad news. I am sure the artist there just did the game that people high up decided that was good idea to make. They did a good job. if anything, most reviews where quite pleased with the art in Bureau.

    I told everyone I know that want to enter the videogame world to go somewhere else better paid, and with a easier life. Game developing sucks.

  3. twig_reads says:

    So the bigshot moneyman give developers instructions on things they don’t understand (other then, that thing made money, we have to do the exact same thing) and when surprise surprise, the idea doesnt work, it’s the developers who are getting hurt the most by it. Not the ones calling the shots and being unadequate doing so. How do people let greedy assholes like those run things?

    • Perjoss says:

      Sadly this is just the way things are, and the more gaming become a mainstream entertainment like movies and music the worse it will get. It’s all good when you have a small team of super talented developers working on their own title, but if they attract too much attention they might eventually get bought up and added to a much larger team. And we know what happens to large teams that do not create games with high metacritic scores.

      I do not work in games anymore but the industry that I work in is very similar, there are just too many people that are allowed to give feedback on the final product, they hire brilliant lead designers only to tell them how they should go about designing the game. There is far too much focus on things like pleasing shareholders and making maximum profit.

      All I’m trying to say is that some of the best games in history also do not rank very highly on the list of ‘games that have sold a bajillion copies’. Likewise some of the best selling games ever are not all that good, in fact they usually lack any charm, innovation or decent story telling, they are just popular because they are popular.

      • kobadow says:

        “…small team of super talented developers working on their own title, but if they attract too much attention they might eventually get bought up and added to a much larger team…”

        If they get ‘bought up’ it’s because they sold their product, i.e. themselves and made money in the process. It takes two to tango in a transaction of that kind.

    • vegeta1998 says:

      Same as it ever was, in any industry.

  4. TekDragon says:

    Good journalism, Grayson. Keep us updated.

  5. Skull says:

    I read about the confused and rocky development this game had only today and I have to admit this comes at no surprise. Hope the developers get a chance to prove themselves soon. link to

    • Moraven says:

      Quite the roller coaster story.

      Clean up. Full control. Creative change that looked bad at first but was coming together, then they killed off any cohesion that existed with taking one studio out and replacing a studio head.

    • Yglorba says:

      “Many sources believe that 2K Marin is in good health. They claim 2K, as a publisher, works hard not to lay people off, close a studio or interfere creatively — sometimes to a fault.”

      Well that worked out for them.

  6. HungryCats says:

    There is seriously a problem with a business model where a company can produce a product of high, or even average quality (didn’t think the Bureau was THAT bad…), and the next step is to lay off employees. Agreed: perhaps people need to think about another career besides game development, or just do it as a hobby. Perhaps staying in independent game development is more consistent/reliable?

    • Shuck says:

      “Perhaps staying in independent game development is more consistent/reliable?”
      No, it’s substantially worse, sadly, unless you’re lucky enough to have a hugely successful game. Otherwise you’re even more insecure; if you’re sufficient “indie,” not only is your income unreliable, you’re actually spending your own money on game development – money you may never make back.

    • Titanium Dragon says:

      Bioshock 2 wasn’t a very good game; I played it, and it was a major step down from Bioshock. The problem was that Bioshock was never all that great of a GAME to begin with; it was the character and story of the city of Rapture that really sold it, with the mediocre gameplay failing to really make the game great or even good; without the character and the story and the parable and the plot twists and metacommentary, it is just a bland first person shooter in a pretty repetitive environment. It wasn’t the worst game I’ve ever played, but it wasn’t good.

      I have not played The Bureau: XCom Declassified but nothing about it makes me want to buy it and a metacritic score of 66 says it got a D – yes, that’s right, a D. That’s a pretty poor score.

  7. Freud says:

    It’s obviously sad on a personal level, but no one felt sorry for typewriter manufacturers when PCs started to take over. If you don’t create something that people wants, you go out of business.

    • twig_reads says:

      They didn’t create because they weren’t allowed by the ones calling the shots/holding the money. This is not a “shit happens” territory, not even close. No matter how much you try to show this only as a matter of numbers on market.

    • Alexander says:

      True bro, but cultural values influence the economy in different directions. And not all cultural values are sane or pleasant. Par example, Bioshock 2 is a great experience. But many more people want another CoD just because reasons pertaining to stuff.

    • Drake Sigar says:

      Publishers don’t know what gamers want. What could the development team do? They can’t make gold out of Pringles.

    • Convolvulus says:

      It’s too bad they didn’t get to make the XCOM they planned on before all the “betrayal” nonsense. I blame hotheaded YouTube personalities, as well as 2K management for neglecting to tell everyone that Firaxis had already been working on a more faithful reboot. Much of the budget problems and upper level ship-jumping seemed a direct result of poor communication and planning from everyone other than 2K Marin.

      • Yglorba says:

        2K Marin never wanted to do the original (stealth / research oriented) version. That was 2K Australia’s pitch. It was discarded when 2K Marin got sole control of the project, unfortunately.

        • Asurmen says:

          He never said they did. He was talking about the first reveal of the FPS(I think!), a game that looked interesting and a unique take on the XCOM name, but also drew a lot of negative feedback because it wasn’t a strategic/tactical game. This was misinterpreted by higher ups that the entire game was flawed. Had the reboot been announced first there’s a chance we may have got that version.

          That’s ignoring the Marin game being turned into a prequel of the reboot of course, which may or may not have anything to do with the negative feedback

  8. Alexander says:

    I don’t know about Bureau, but Bioshock 2 is one fucking awesome experience. Sad to hear this.

    • Henke says:

      Yeah, that was my favourite Bioshock. :)

      • dethtoll says:

        Mine too. Since Bioshock 1 got all that clunky worldbuilding out of the way Bioshock 2 was free to focus on the important stuff.

  9. Lord Custard Smingleigh says:

    One of the reasons why I’m glad I don’t work in games.

    “We’re slightly losing money temporarily! Quick! Cause immense damage to our employees’ financial lives in the hope that this tiny setback becomes even tinier!”

    • P.Funk says:

      Some might call this sound business thinking.

      But fuck that, this is why I’m slowly becoming an Anarchist.

      • cthulhie says:

        Becoming an anarchist is a big move. Important to take it slowly and make the process as orderly as possible.

  10. mouton says:

    Well, at least they didn’t fold because a CEO wanted to make billion units of a specialized wii accessory.

  11. Marshall says:

    I’m a little confused.

    You say that ‘2K Marin is “essentially” done for’ but aren’t we just saying that one of their teams, and a couple of those employees have moved over to Rod Fergusson’s team within the same company? Unless Fergusson’s 2K (in which is in Marin) is somehow different from 2K Marin?

    Sorry if I’m just being semantic, but it sounds like a contradiction.

    • Yglorba says:

      A few people were moved over a few weeks ago. Now the news is that everyone else (read: nearly everyone) is getting fired.

  12. JP says:

    To all the folks praising Bio 2 and offering condolences: thank you so much. I was one of the studio’s founders, and it really was a special place for a while.

    To anyone affected by the closure: Best of luck with whatever’s ahead. I promise you, there is life after XCOM!!

    • MadTinkerer says:

      Bioshock 2 was the reason I knew “XCOM” had potential to be a good game, despite some peoples’ cries of “betrayal!” at the initial annoucement. This was long ago, back before the age of the Kickstarter Spiritual Sequel, when it seemed the AAA pubs were going to go the Hollywood route of sodomising franchises that fans had been desperately wanting more of (And even today, fucking Smurfs 2 is a film in theaters. Goddamn Hollywood.), with no other alternative in sight. After all, all of the big pubs wanted to be like Hollywood, and is there such a thing as spiritual sequels to AAA Films in Indie Films? There was wailing and outright despair, and I sympathized. I managed to miss the original X-Com games when they first came out, but I had played demos and was certainly much happier when Enemy Unknown was announced.

      But I FUCKING LOVED BIOSHOCK 2. I despised GFWL too much to buy Minerva’s Den, but miraculously I got it for free on Steam (I swear I would have bought it if GFWL hadn’t been holding it hostage), and just a few days ago played the BEST BIOSHOCK-ANYTHING. Bioshock Infinite is all right. I like it, and even mentally shelve it among the “great games” in my mind once I understood the more confusing parts. But: Bioshock 2 > Bioshock Infinite, and Minerva’s Den bumps it forward several notches towards Greatest Game Of All Time. That’s just how it is.

      We’ll see if BI can catch up to BS2 with it’s own Rapture-based episodes, but in the meantime, Bioshock 2 is King of The Bioshocks. And that is why I was looking forward to XCOM.

      • Jason Moyer says:

        I was really looking forward to XCOM until they switched it to a third person tactical shooter and Jordan Thomas left the studio. The original trailer for the game was phenomenal, what we ended up getting was garbage.

    • Bull0 says:

      Joining the chorus of people who really, really liked Bioshock 2. Best wishes to all involved in this sad event.

  13. Michael Fogg says:

    Look at the bright side! No more crunch time for those guys!

  14. HisDivineOrder says:

    Well, the game was truly dreadful. The people in charge of that game really needed to be fired, but the rest of them are suffering probably for very little to no reason.

    That said, there’s never been a better time to be kicked out by a big publisher because indies are popping up everywhere like bacteria on a festering wound that is big game publishers. Indies are going to swarm the publishers and soon destroy them.

    So really, this will probably wind up being a great thing for at least some of these talented people.

    • MadTinkerer says:

      I prefer the analogy of Big Pubs are dinosaurs: Big Slow Lizards. Indies are Small Fast Mammals. The Big Slow Lizards lay eggs. Tasty Tasty Eggs for the Small Fast Mammals to eat and run away faster than the Big Slow Lizards can move. And so eventually there are only Small Fast Mammals because all of the lizard eggs are eaten. And no one mourns because there is too much partying.

      • Volcanu says:

        I would mourn actually. The world is a less cool place without the odd Tyrannosaurus.

        I agree that there is much to loathe in the world of big publisher, AAA titles- particularly the race to the bottom epitomised by yearly installments with incremental (at best) change and an ever more ‘directed’ experience that relies on loud, vacuous “spectacle”.

        But for all that, there is still a place for the AAA game in this world. Indie games can be great, but I will always love a well made, big budget title too- they may be few and far between, but they do exist and they do offer something beyond the reach of most indie titles.

        The gaming landscape should have enough room for great indie titles and great AAA games from big publishers. That said COD can go and wither in a ditch somewhere.

  15. Muzman says:

    On the up side we might have just gotten a whole lot of interesting, imaginative indie developers.

    Is 2K Australia still alive? They had their game taken away from them and beaten with the mediocrity stick. The inevitable seemed to be next. If there’s any Irrational off shoots left, break away while there’s still time!

  16. vegeta1998 says:

    I don’t really like any 2k games, and they obviously weren’t making enough money or something, so the free market works. Good job and good luck I guess

    • Asurmen says:

      If that were true, why are the people making the decisions that lead to the games you don’t like not losing their jobs?

  17. m2stech says:

    Meh both games were mediocre for me at best, not gonna miss them.

    • belgand says:

      Pretty much this. A company makes two poorly-received games (I didn’t play either and thus cannot comment on the quality beyond this) and then goes out of business. That actually sounds rather obvious and reasonable.

  18. Shodex says:

    You know, this may very well be a good thing. I personally did not enjoy The Bureau: XCOM Declassified, but I saw the makings of something good in it. It just suffered from one of those tragic cases of a overly lengthy, troublesome development. I did, however, really enjoy Bioshock 2. Both XCOM Declassified and Bioshock 2 suffered, above anything else, one major problem. They were sequels. In XCOM’s case, a sequel unlike the original launching very close to the more faithful remake. You know how people are with change. In Bioshock’s case, it was a sequel going back to the same place. Bioshock 2 was very well made, just as well made as the original in most aspects. But Bioshock 2 lacked something VERY important that the original had, the discovery of Rapture. The mystery. The sunken city’s awe and mystery was gone. You know how people are when there isn’t enough change.

    Now note how the biggest problems with the games are the fact that they are piggy backing off of another franchise. This alone made both games leave a bitter taste in people’s mouths, but by no means would I ever consider faulting the developers for these problems. There was a lot of talent that went into these games.

    So while it’s very unfortunate news, and I always feel bad reading about this stuff, perhaps this will pave the way for the talented people who worked on these games to show their talents in broader daylight. New consoles are launching, and Kickstarter is helping bring some demand back into the market for new IP. So perhaps the excellent game design, and great ideas that these people came up with at 2K Marin will be put towards creating new, exciting worlds for us to explore.

  19. kud13 says:

    wow, where to start?

    First off, condolences to people who were laid off.

    Second of all–this is yet another studio killed directly by executor meddling.

    Bioshock 2 was solid. I played both Bioshocks way after release. Bioshock 1 I played same time as S.T.AL.K.E.R.–so as a shooter it is a mediocre game. The environmental stuff with plasmids was cool, and the story was neat, but it failed both as a shooter AND as the new System shock. 7.5-8.0 game, tops.

    Bioshock 2, conversely fixed a lot of issues. it simplified hacking to a twitch reflex game, which made it far more tolerable. it added more enemies type and focused on combat, and the interplay between plasmid powers. It tried to branch its story a bit, and did a brilliant job with it. I may question the wisdom of making it a full sequel, but it was an 8.5 game to me, easily. And Minerva’s den (which i was also able to play post the demise of GaFWL), was also very good.

    Now, XCOM…. I hated the idea. Or rather, I hated that they took a neat game concept, and then called it XCOM.
    There were 3 stages to that fiasco.
    Stage 1–2K Marin had a genuinely cool idea. 50’s USA, horror shooter with elements of investigation and exploration, against abstract and menacing aliens.

    IT WAS BRILLIANT. If they called it “Bureau insert significant-sounding number here” or “Roswell: Origins” (everyone loves origins of things, right?), I’d have paid money to play the game. it’s not like we get a whole lot of x-file-type stuff.

    But. As X-COM, it was wrong. very wrong. This was not made any better by the response to criticism, which included gems like someone @ 2k Marin mentioning that “TBS games just don’t sell anymore”. Which made a lot of people very angry, given how nonsensical this was, knowing that 2K are the guys who publish Civilization.

    Then there was stage 2–When they Mass-effectified their game, AND revealed that TBS X-COM was in teh works. All the rabid fans moved on to complain about time units and lack thereof, but in light of waht has been said, and the shitstorm already existing, average gamers looking into this would read the changes in design as “those TBS fanatics gave us too much bad publicity and the CoD crowd wasn’t responsive enough since it wasn’t clear if the aliens were terrorist or not. But then we remembered that BioWare fans have money. Look, Mass Effect dealies!”

    And then, post-the success of TBS X-COM, they brought the game out AGAIN, this time as 3-rd person shooter… with X-COM tactical combat elements. Which was both a blatant attempt to ride the coattails of TBS popularity (nevermind that those guys may still be angry with you over Stage 1), AND, most importantly, demonstrated that the dev (or its publisher) had ZERO confidence in their own vision, and was trying really hard to ride the trends.

    So I’m sorry to hear the studio’s gone. That being said, I’m not surprised. This all could’ve been avoided if they just picked a different name for their FBI shooter game so many years ago (and I repeat, the concept was brilliant)

    • Jason Moyer says:

      I don’t see why a game’s title should have any effect whatsoever on whether a person plays and/or likes it. The obsession that people have with franchises is pathetic and a significant reason why publishers will never stop milking them.

      • RobF says:

        Yup, I agree. A lot of time and money’s been spent by the entertainment industry on putting brand first over the years though so it’s not surprising to see people cling to these things.

      • Yglorba says:

        It’s not just about branding; or, more properly, it’s because branding does actually mean thing with serious practical implications that it makes sense for customers to be concerned with. First, you have to understand that series are sometimes useful identifiers of what you’re going to get. If I fire up a Hitman game, I have at least some idea of what I’ll get out of it; if I fire up a Final Fantasy game or a Gears of War title or the latest installment in the Civilization series, I expect something different.

        This clear easy-identification that goes with an established series has a practical purpose, too (which is why it happens.) Making a game is a huge risk. It costs a massive amount of money and may not earn it back. Making a game modeled after an established one makes sense for the developer, who can do more to promise a return, and it makes sense for fans of the original game, who are happy to learn that a game they liked before is getting a new installment that will hopefully follow up on what they liked about it.

        When a new installment in a series fails to capture what was good about its predecessors — or, worse, shows that the developers are deliberately abandoning them — customers have a good reason to be concerned. For one thing, of course, there’s the disappointment of seeing a box that seems to promise one thing and opening it to find another — if you click on something that advertises the new Civilization or Thief and find it’s exactly like Gears of War, of course you’re gonna be upset, because the brand means more than just an interchangeable trademark.

        But worse, many of the things that make (for example) Thief what it is tend to go along with the ownership of that trademark — even if mechanics aren’t strictly copyrightable or trademarkable, the art and setting and visual look and feel all are to one extent or another. And most studios are going to try and avoid competing with themselves, so if you find out that — for instance — the people who own the rights to Thief are using the IP to make a Gears of War clone, that means that (if you’re someone who liked the original games and wants to play something new-but-similar), your chances of getting that, ever, from anyone, go way down. That’s a totally reasonable thing to be disappointed in.

        Not all games in a series are just “milking” a franchise. I liked Thief 1, and when Thief 2 came out, I bought it, because I wanted another game, set in its universe, using the same mechanics; and I was happy with what I got. (And I daresay most people who did the same were similarly happy.) So it makes me sad that the people who own the rights to that universe — to the setting I like and the characters I like and so on — are not interested in using them to make another game like that. I mean, not too sad; there are lots and lots of other games, and so on. But it’s a pity.

        I gather that you think that there’s something pathetic about that, but I don’t understand what it is…? Brands aren’t just hollow marketing buzzwords. When they’re used well, they serve a purpose, for both customers and studios; they tell people what to expect and make it easier for people to find stuff they like in a crowded marketplace. When they’re used poorly… you get disappointed customers and games that don’t sell well because they’re being marketed to the wrong people.

        (It seems especially odd that you’d complain about brands and the expectations fans attach to them in this particular case, because despite the sad ending for this particular dev studio, the story of XCOM has a happy ending — the fan outcry over the fact that Bureau wasn’t what they expected was part of what led to the creation of the excellent smash-hit XCOM: Enemy Unknown, which benefited both 2K Games and the fans who were demanding it. If it hadn’t been for the strong association X-Com’s original gameplay had with its trademark — and the guaranteed audience that those things brought — nobody would have dared to make an AAA turn-based strategy game like Enemy Unknown in this day and age.)

        • wr0ng1 says:

          I’m pretty certain that games come with descriptions these days. If you just read the name, buy the game and are suddenly blind-sided by a difference in the style you’d predicted from the name alone, then it’s stupidity, not brand transposition that wasted your money.

        • Talon2000uk says:

          For me this is the best reply of the week. Couldn’t agree more Yglorba. I wish more gamers and publishers actually understood this. Brand loyalty goes both ways, If you mess your customers around it’s hardly surprising when they decide to go else where for their fun.

          Eidos Montreal and Square Enix should be a little bit more aware of this. I’m getting exactly the same vibes from Thief as I did from XCOM and that can’t be good for either the fans of the series or the studio.

        • Werthead says:

          Very well-argued, but two problems that I can see:

          1) XCOM has always been a multi-genre franchise. Of the eight games released in the series to date only three are turn-based strategy games. We’ve also had a space combat game, a third-person action game, a third-person cover-based shooter, a real-time (ish) strategy game and even a play-by-email thing. Doing a different genre in the XCOM universe isn’t new, and could have worked quite well. It didn’t, obviously, but I don’t think it’s the case that the idea was doomed from the start.

          2) XCOM: ENEMY UNKNOWN was in ‘background’ development (i.e. a couple of guys were working on it) at Firaxis since 2003, and in active development since 2007. The response to THE BUREAU’s early versions didn’t have much bearing on the decision to make and release it. In fact, XCOM: EU had a much bigger impact on THE BUREAU than vice versa:

          link to

        • RobF says:

          XCOM was in dev anyway so nah, no-one achieved anything from comments section whinging. Well, whether they manage to derail the dev on other-XCOM is something perhaps worth considering but anyway, that’s getting well away from the point.

          The reason putting branding first is fairly toxic is that games are made by people and what the games industry have been working towards pushing first and foremost is that these brands, these things you have expectations of, they’re the things that are super important not the people who make them. And that’s super awkward, right? Because then you’ve either got to keep these guys in service of the brand because everyone expects another one of these games so we end up limited on what games make it out there and maybe they don’t want to be making the same game forever and ever OR you end up with the usual scenario that actually, they don’t matter so we’ll pass it onto some other guys and sorry about your jobs and all that but remember, it’s the brand that’s important not you guys so tata, see you, don’t let the door bang your arse on the way out.

          Which is fairly toxic, y’know? And limiting because *why* can’t a game go off and do all these other things? Why constrain it constantly to what some people laid down in the first title and let’s not move far from there because we have expectations of the brand? Why is preserving a brand so important? Ah yeah, because the brand is important because… umm… without brands how would we know what this series of games do! Ahaha. Amazing.

          So you end up with this massively horrible mess where talented people aren’t respected for the work they do and are generally considered expendable whereas the IP is considered a treasure, you end up with a situation where we get less new games because we have brands and we also end up with less expansive game universes because hey, get back in line, everyone knows this videogame isn’t about that so stop it.

      • LegendaryTeeth says:

        The problem wasn’t so much that it was called XCOM, it was that it was called XCOM in a world where there was no modern TBS X-COM, and the latter is all anyone who cared about X-COM wanted.

        In a world where a modern TBS X-COM exists, 50s XCOM where you control one of the dudes in first person sounds awesome.

        They should have just announced both at the same time. They everyone would have been happy, and calling it XCOM might have actually helped them like they wanted it to.

  20. RobF says:

    Sad to hear this and well wishes and speedy indie-dom or fresh workplaces to all those effected.

  21. Yosharian says:

    I always thought Bioshock 2 was far better, in every way, than the original.

  22. Jimbo says:

    Bioshocking. Whoever decided it was a good idea to build a game which was effectively just the shit half of Mass Effect 2 needs their head examining. I’m willing to bet that person somehow managed to keep their job though.

  23. Premium User Badge

    Ninja Dodo says:

    Sorry to hear this. Bioshock 2 was really good. The first gets credit for creating the setting but 2 was stronger. The cat and mouse game with the Big Sisters was always a lot of fun and I thought the narrative arc with Eleanor and the way she interpreted your actions worked really well. Some of the flooding sequences were damned impressive too. And Minerva’s Den… man, that ending.

  24. bill says:

    I have never understood the business model of continually opening and closing new studios. Doesn’t that create huge costs in terms of set up, etc?
    If a studio makes a bad game, why don’t they fix what was wrong? Instead of closing that studio and opening a new studio down the road, which will then hire many of the same people, and get closed down in turn in 2 years?

    • Svardskampe says:

      I think you can only know for sure why when you’re a scummy CEO. I bet it has something to do with debts not having to pay off and such.

      Also, a team might just lack the creativity and geniousness of making good games great. But they might be excellent devs of making assets.

  25. Mr Ogs says:

    Alfa Romeo’s are rubbish and unreliable. Similar to the bosses of large devs.

  26. strangeloup says:

    While The Bureau looked fairly pants to me — though if, say, it turned up on PS Plus I’d give it a shot — I thought Bioshock 2 was better than the first. I need to reinstall it now it’s been unshackled from the nightmare that is GFWL and check out Minerva’s Den. Even then, I suspect there was executive meddling, as the multiplayer is tacked-on and, if it wasn’t present, the single player part may have been more fleshed out. The same thing happened with Spec Ops: The Line, and wasn’t that published by 2K as well?

  27. K33L3R says:

    Lay-offs always suck, good luck to the devs who didn’t get jobs
    I loved Bioshock but it was the second game that nailed it perfectly, everything was just done better and the story was far superior, Infinite was just meh; corridor shooter

  28. noodlecake says:

    Sad times. They were doomed as soon as they ended up with the XCOm spin off. Nobody really wanted it. Even if it ended up being phenomenal I don’t think it would have done very well.