Bandai Namco shuts down its Vancouver studio

Bandai Namco Studios Vancouver is shutting down.

Tekken Mobile game director and senior vice president at Bandai Namco, Landon Nguyen, made the announcement on their personal twitter account, before switching it to password-protected and hiding the tweet.

"I’m sad to announce that as of today Bandai Namco Studios Vancouver will be shutting down," Nguyen said in a tweet on November 16th before locking down the account (thanks, CinemaBlend). "I want to thank everyone who came with us on this journey. We shipped some awesome experiences together. Thank you to all the fans who supported our games and our studio."

The British-Columbia-based studio made Tekken Mobile, as well as other mobile games based on the Katamari and Pac-Man franchises. According to CinemaBlend, Nguyen confirmed Tekken Mobile would remain available, and while he purportedly acknowledged that future updates were "up in the air", he added a skeleton crew remains in place to "maintain the game, for now".

Other Canadian studios like Relic Entertainment and Klei have popped up in Nguyen’s mentions, inviting those affected to get in touch for any openings the teams may have.

This closure sadly comes on the back of several others throughout the year, most recently Trion Worlds, best known for its MMO games, including Defiance, Rift, and Trove. The media too has been affected, with the shuttering of leading strategy guides publisher Prima Games and Future’s GamesMaster and games™ magazines.

Telltale Games laid off the majority of its staff in a ‘majority studio closure’ back in September. 25 employees remained at the company, though most projects have reportedly been cancelled, and subsequent reports suggest even the skeleton crew have now been let go. The layoffs were confirmed via a tweet on the official Telltale Games account, blaming a year ‘marked by insurmountable challenges’ for the decision.

A former Telltale Games employee subsequently launched a class action lawsuit against the company, claiming it violated California’s WARN Act in not giving those fired at least 60 days notice before termination. The case was brought by Vernie Roberts, Jr. and is on behalf of all those impacted by Telltale’s redundancies. Telltale is alleged to have failed to adhere to a number of its financial commitments to employees, including salaries, bonuses, commissions, holiday pay and more for the 60 days following terminations.

About Vikki Blake

It took 15 years of civil service monotony for Vikki to crack and switch to writing about games. She has since become an experienced reporter and critic working with a number of specialist and mainstream outlets in both the UK and beyond, including Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, IGN, MTV, and Variety.

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