Ascendant Studios, the developer behind the recently released Immortals of Avenum, has laid off nearly half its staff. The news was first reported by Polygon, and confirmed by CEO Bret Robbins shortly after.
— Bret Robbins (@BretRobbins) September 14, 2023
In a post on X (formerly Twitter), Robbins stated that 45% of the team had been laid off in a “difficult, but necessary” decision following the release of Immortals of Aveum. He added that the studio is supporting those impacted in “every way we can” including severance packages, job placement assistance, and support services for those who are still at the studio. He also indicates that those impacted were largely Unreal Engine 5 artists and engineers.
Polygon’s report indicates that this layoff impacted around 40 people total and was due to poor sales of Immortals of Aveum, and were necessary to keep the studio open. The game has seen fairly weak player counts on Steam since its launch just last month, and received mixed reviews from critics. Immortals of Aveum was touted in the lead-up to launch as a single-player, magic shooter from developers with experience on games like Dead Space, Halo, and Bioshock.
Though developed by Ascendant, Immortals of Aveum was published through EA’s EA Originals program, which has historically been a program for supporting indie games but has more recently been partnering with better-known names such as Koei Tecmo. One source told Polygon that Immortals of Aveum may have been one of the worst-selling EA Originals thus far.
Rebekah Valentine is a senior reporter for IGN. Got a story tip? Send it to email@example.com.