Codemasters have laid off a large number of people from their studio behind rough ‘n’ tumble racer Onrush, the team formerly known as Evolution, according to a Eurogamer report. A PC version of Onrush was due to follow after June’s console launch, but its fate is unclear given the big changes at the studio. The scale of the damage isn’t public yet but Eurogamer’s sources whisper that the studio have been “decapitated”, with Onrush director Paul Rustchynsky gone, multiple senior developers fired or re-interviewing for new positions, and some junior staff lost too.
It’s been a rocky few years for this team. After an initial series of layoffs in 2015, Sony shut down Evolution back in 2016 after work was finished on Driveclub for PS4. Thankfully Codemasters picked them up before they could be scattered to the wind. Outwardly similar to their Motorstorm series on PS3, Onrush looked to be a fine return to form for the studio. While the game was well reviewed when it hit consoles on June 5th, it doesn’t appear to have performed as well as Codemasters wanted.
I was hopeful that its launch would mark a new beginning for this team. Unfortunately, it feels like it’s the end of the road, and I sincerely hope everyone involved is able to find new work soon. I’ve reached out to Codemasters to see if they can give us any info on the PC version of Onrush, and will be updating this story as and when we get it.
I’m hoping that Onrush does eventually get released on PC and finds an audience there. After playing it at Rezzed earlier this year, I was genuinely surprised. Onrush is like nothing else I’ve played, feeling almost like a class-based team deathmatch (with cars) than a traditional arcade racing game. Oddly enough, it felt a bit like Overwatch to me, which is a hell of a thing to be reminded of in a racing game.