DICE shuts Trauma office

Desert Combat dev downed.

Swedish developer Digital Illusions CE has announced that it is to close New York based Trauma Studios only nine months after the acquisition of the company, with all of its remaining staff to be offered positions in Stockholm.

DICE paid $300,000 for Trauma Studios in September of last year, a sum which included both the company and the rights to Desert Combat, its immensely popular free modification for DICE's Battlefield 1942.

Since then, DICE itself has come close to being acquired by publisher Electronic Arts - which is now a majority shareholder in the firm - but Trauma Studios has remained silent, with no sign yet of the widely expected commercial update to Desert Combat.

"The conditions have changed and the future plans of the company differ considerably from when Trauma Studios was acquired," explained DICE board chairman Thomas Skoglund. "The acquisition of Trauma Studios was nevertheless particularly motivated. The deal contained value in form of rights to trademarks as well as a new game concept."

DICE now plans to focus on continued expansion of its Swedish operations, and has confirmed that all of the 12 remaining staff at Trauma will be offered positions in the firm's head office in Stockholm.

The Canadian office of the company, which focuses mostly on the development of expansion content for its games, will be unaffected by the decision.

DICE expects to take a SEK 1.3 million (142,000 Euro) hit in its second quarter figures due to writing down of the remaining goodwill associated with Trauma, but claims that other costs related to the closure will be minimal.

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