Mass Effect: Andromeda studio BioWare Montreal is no more, having been merged with Star Wars Battlefront 2 co-developer EA Motive. This is according to a statement from EA after months of speculation following the disappointing critical reaction to the new Mass Effect game.
The story regarding BioWare Montreal's merger started circulating after EA's quarterly conference call where CFO Blake Jorgensen said that teams from BioWare Montreal and EA Motive (also based in Montreal) were sharing a studio.
"We're building out a new studio in Montreal, as we've told everyone. And we've hired over 100 people into that studio that are brand-new to EA," said Jorgensen. "This is to build the new IP around Jade Raymond's team that she's been building... And we brought our BioWare Montreal team into that same facility. So they now all sit in one new studio together."
EA later confirmed to TechRaptor that the statement from Jorgensen was a confirmation of a merger between BioWare Montreal and Motive.
"With multiple major projects in development in Montreal, we are merging BioWare Montreal with Motive Studios. This is an ongoing process, but there are many exciting roles and opportunities for everyone the team," said an EA statement regarding the merger. "BioWare continues its work on new titles - including the highly-anticipated game, Anthem. What's coming next for BioWare is very exciting and we're thrilled to have Casey Hudson returning to lead the studios in Edmonton and Austin."
It's been a tumultuous couple of months at BioWare Montreal following the release of Mass Effect: Andromeda. The studio was scaled down after employees from BioWare Montreal moved to Motive Studios back in May. Then came reports that the single-player DLC for Mass Effect: Andromeda was put on hiatus as more employees were transferred to other projects like Anthem and Dragon Age.
The development of Mass Effect: Andromeda was reported to have had serious internal development struggles as the game cycled through multiple directors and continuously scaled down ambitions to make release. BioWare Edmonton also recently changed general managers, further marking changes at the BioWare brand.
While EA still hasn't issued a statement regarding the DLC plans for Mass Effect: Andromeda, it seems more than likely that Andromeda has been put on the backburner, well, further back.
Jade Raymond Motive Studios is currently working on several projects including Star Wars Battlefront 2 and the unnamed Star Wars game with Visceral and Uncharted's Amy Hennig.