Disney to close Black Rock
Disney Interactive has confirmed that Brighton-based Split/Second developer Black Rock Studio is to close.
The publisher has informed the studio’s 40 remaining staff, and said in a statement to Eurogamer: “Disney Interactive Studios confirms that Black Rock Studio’s current project has not been greenlit for further development.
“Consequently the company informed employees yesterday of the intent to enter a consultation process on the proposal to close the studios.”
In May, Disney laid off a reported 100 staff at Black Rock, leaving 40 employees to continue work “with the aim of reducing the studio to a single game team.” With that single game now cancelled as well, Disney’s has taken the decision to close the studio after thirteen years in the business.
It was formed in 1998 under the name Pixel Planet, acquired by Disney Interactive – under its former name Buena Vista Games – and renamed Black Rock in 2007.
Black Rock is far from the only studio to suffer as Disney shifts away from the console market towards low-risk mobile and social development. It made a reported 250 staff redundant in January, shortly after closing Tron: Evolution developer Propaganda Games.