UK developer Jagex has confirmed 13 people have been made redundant from the Transformers Universe team.
Jagex, which makes MMO Runescape, told Eurogamer the layoffs will not "adversely impact" the free-to-play browser MMO, but according to a source close to the matter concern is building over the quality of the game.
Eurogamer understands the layoffs were triggered by tech changes to the project. It had been decided that Transformers Universe should be built using established technology rather than in-house technology, and as a result fewer staff were needed.
We've also been told Transformers Universe is in a "precarious position", with Jagex under pressure to release before the end of the year. Using established tech should speed up the development process, but some are worried about remaking the game using unfamiliar tech inside of six months.
"Having reviewed the remaining work required for the upcoming Transformers Universe launch we have made the decision to scale the development team back slightly," Jagex told Eurogamer in a statement.
"We have always been committed to developing the highest quality games and services and are confident that this reduction will not adversely impact the game. "The vast majority of the Transformers studio will be unaffected by this move. On a positive note a significant portion of the talent potentially effected have already been reallocated to support the upcoming release of RuneScape 3 in HTML 5 and the RuneScape 3 on tablets project slated for the end of the year. Regrettably we have not been able to find suitable roles for 13 members of the team who will be leaving the studio later this month. "We will be revealing more details about the game on www.transformersuniverse.com shortly."
The last time we reported on Transformers Universe was in October 2012, when the first gameplay trailer was released. But we haven't heard much of anything since.