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Homeworld 3 Developer Blackbird Interactive Confirms Layoffs After ‘Several’ Projects Canceled



Blackbird Interactive, the developer behind Homeworld 3, announced today that it has laid off more than 40 employees after several of its upcoming projects have been canceled.

The news was first made public on LinkedIn (spotted first by X user @bogorad222) by James Marshall, who is a Technical Artist at Blackbird Interactive. Marshall noted that over 40 people were laid off, and IGN could independently confirm that 41 employees were let go by the studio.

In a statement sent to IGN, a spokesperson for Blackbird Interactive confirmed the studio had layoffs and that 41 employees were impacted.

“We’ve had to take the unfortunate step of laying off some friends this week. This year has been incredibly tough on the industry as a whole. As a result, we’ve had several unannounced projects canceled and yesterday were forced to say goodbye to 41 of our team members. As an independent studio, Blackbird Interactive has always been a close-knit team. Our top priority is helping position those affected for this next stage of their careers. We are offering a suite of extended benefits and severance to help ease this transition. No announced projects will be affected by this move, and we will continue to deliver on those games.”

Blackbird Interactive was founded in 2007. As noted on GamesIndustry.biz’s website, Blackbird was founded by senior members who previously worked for EA and Relic Entertainment, the latter of which developed the first two games in the Homeworld franchise. The studio is also one of a handful of developers that has implemented a four-day work week, which it went into effect last year.

Blackbird Interactive has worked on several projects with its first game, titled Homeworld: Deserts of Kaharak, released in 2016. The studio also helped Minecraft developer Mojang Studios co-develop Minecraft Legends. Blackbird is currently working on Homeworld 3, which is set to release next year on PC. Additionally, Blackbird is working on Earthless, a sci-fi-themed card game announced in June, that will be published by Team17 and is set to release in Steam Early Access sometime next year.

Blackbird Interactive is one of several studios to have been hit with layoffs this year. Other studios hit with layoffs include The Callisto Protocol developer Striking Distance Studios, Witcher and Cyberpunk 2077 developer CD Projekt Red, and Embracer Group-owned Campfire Cabal.

Taylor is a Reporter at IGN. You can follow her on Twitter @TayNixster.

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