The studio developing PS3 spy MMO The Agency, Sony Online Entertainment Seattle, may be closed today. Will The Agency be cancelled as a result?

Duke Nukem creator and 3D Realms co-founder George Broussard broke the news on Twitter.

"Word that Sony Online Entertainment Seattle is having lay-offs and that studio closure is possible," he tweeted last night.

"To be more clear, the lay-offs may be SOE wide and not just limited to Seattle. So, Austin, San Diego, etc..." he clarified.

Hours later, Broussard added: "SOE Seattle and other studios (Denver is rumored) will be closed tomorrow. Good luck to all impacted."

Following a recent delay, The Agency was given a new release date of late 2011. Eurogamer spoke to Sony Online Entertainment president John Smedley in January who insisted that "late this year" was still very much the launch plan.

Smedley elaborated, telling us there were slightly under 115 people working on the spy-themed MMO, and 50 were to be reserved for post-launch development and patches.

MMOs are notoriously expensive games to make and, ambitiously, Sony Online Entertainment has (had?) more than one in development: PlanetSide Next, EverQuest Next and The Agency. SOE also has the upkeep of Free Realms and DC Universe Online to see to.

But they were successful, weren't they? DC Universe Online became SOE's fastest-selling game ever, according to a John Smedley tweet earlier this year. Free Realms, meanwhile, enjoys 17 million registered accounts and has just welcomed a PS3 version across North America (European launch forthcoming).

Sometimes we include links to online retail stores. If you click on one and make a purchase we may receive a small commission. For more information, go here.

Jump to comments (29)

About the author

Robert Purchese

Robert Purchese

Senior Staff Writer

Bertie is senior staff writer and Eurogamer's Poland-and-dragons correspondent. He's part of the furniture here, a friendly chair, and reports on all kinds of things, the stranger the better.

More articles by Robert Purchese

Comments (29)

Hide low-scoring comments
Order
Threading

Related

Revealing Agent, BioWare's spy RPG that didn't survive the recession

"The concept was to do the other half of GoldenEye..."

Sony confirms The Agency is cancelled

205 jobs gone, three studios closed.

Sony: Expect PlanetSide Next Q1/Q2

Plus: The Agency, Free Realms PS3 launches.

Sony's spy MMO The Agency delayed

"We have to do better," says SOE.

The Agency: "something" playable soon

"MMO itself" will "take as long as it takes".