Revolution Devolution

It's grim up north, but not as grim as we first thought...

Posted by Staff
News reached us late last week regarding York-based Revolution Software's decision to cut back on its staff levels. Concerned that one of the most talented development outfits from just up the road were on the brink of teetering on the edge of something unthinkable (how much more delicately could we put it?) we made a couple of calls and found out what's been going on.

Revolution's head honcho Charles Cecil told us all about the staff cuts and why they had to happen: "Basically we are moving away from top-end console production to concentrate on smaller projects and the design of original games. This is in recognition that to compete in the area of huge future-gen console projects you have to have a massive team with the associate overhead[s]. We needed to choose to grow to meet this requirement, or shrink to concentrate on our core skills. We have chosen the latter.

"As a result we have had to make some redundancies. This is a great shame - although given the talent and skills of those that are moving on, I have every confidence that they will have no trouble finding alternative employment.

"So this is an exciting new start for the company. It will allow us to concentrate on creating new IP, and exploiting new opportunities that arise."

An ex-Revolution staffer, who preferred to remain anonymous, told us,"The main reason for the lay-offs was failing to get a game signed. We had at least two in the works. One's still waiting on the contracts and the other - which was looking very promising - we had been working on since November. We had a playable demo that has now been put back a few months as the publisher is re-organising its UK and US offices." Whichever publisher this may be, we weren't told.

Our source continued: "There was a lot of interest in Revolution. Most of the big publishers were approaching Revolution about working with them, but nothing was signed. Some great games and licenses were mentioned, but unfortunately publishers don't rush when it comes to getting contracts together."

So, Revolution Software - perhaps most famous for Beneath a Steel Sky and the Broken Sword series - is still up and running, albeit in a smaller guise than this time last week. Like all games fans, we're sure you - along with everyone here at SPOnG - wish Revolution all the best for the future.


Joji 17 May 2004 15:53
Indeed, this is a shame, but in a way nice that the want to re-invent themselves in some other way. Good luck to them.
joeBlade 18 May 2004 11:48
Went out and bought BaSS on my Amiga right after playing the demo on the Amiga Format cover disk. Gave Broken Sword a try when it was first released on PSX but just couldn't get into it. Never played the most recent Broken Sword despite loads of great reviews. Feel the guilt <sob>

Its a shame to see another good UK developer shafted by greedy publishers.

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