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Midgard put on hold

All hands to battle stations as Anarchy Online flounders

Dark blue icons of video game controllers on a light blue background
Image credit: Eurogamer

Norwegian developers Funcom have laid off around 30 staff, many of them from the company's mobile games division, and suspended work on their promising next generation massively multiplayer game Midgard. All staff are now focusing on the ill-fated Anarchy Online, which was afflicted by bugs and performance issues when it was launched six months ago and failed to reach the kind of success enjoyed by the likes of Everquest. Now that the stability problems have been ironed out and the storyline is underway though, Funcom are hoping to attract more players to the game, and are also attempting to lure back the many people who have cancelled their accounts by offering them another free month's subscription. Whether this will be enough to save the company and its various projects remains to be seen, but thanks to Norway's odd social security system the transition shouldn't be too painful. According to a Funcom PR rep, the sacked staff are actually on "temporary leave", which means that they remain paid employees of Funcom but the government provides 80% of their salary. And if the number of Anarchy Online subscribers doesn't pick up within the next few months, the staff can be permanently laid off with all the usual severance packages. Hopefully it won't come to that though, and if everything goes to plan work will resume on Midgard once Anarchy Online has been rescued. Related Feature - Midgard preview

Storm clouds are brewing over Anarchy Online

Source - HomeLAN Fed

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