Hangar 13, the studio responsible for 2016’s Mafia III, has been hit with a wave of layoffs. Publisher 2K confirmed the news with GameSpot, though the exact scope of the “staff reductions” is unclear at this point.
“2K can confirm that there have been staff reductions at Hangar 13 in order to ensure that the studio’s resources are properly aligned with its long-term development plans,” a 2K spokesperson said in a statement. “These reductions will not influence 2K’s ability to create and deliver its products that are currently in development. We never take these matters lightly, and are working with the affected employees to support them and explore potential opportunities throughout our organization.”
The news was originally reported by Kotaku; sources speaking with the site indicated that a “large portion” of the studio’s staff have been laid off. At least prior to Mafia III’s release, Hangar 13’s staff count was in the neighborhood of 150 people.
Mafia III was the debut game from Hangar 13, which was formed in 2014. (The first two titles were developed by Silver Wish Games, now known as 2K Czech.) Its next project had not been officially announced, though Mafia III itself was seemingly a success for the company. It shipped 4.5 million copies to retailers during its launch week, which was a new record for 2K at the time. By the end of March 2017, it had shipped 5 million units.
Although shipment numbers were strong, critics were not as kind–our Mafia III review scored it a 6/10, and the Metacritic average landed in the 60s. Following launch, the CEO of 2K parent company Take-Two, Strauss Zelnick, admitted, “The scores were lower than we would have liked.” He highlighted the positive reviews and chalked up others as “some anomalies in the review system.”