Last Friday, Telltale Games laid off 250 employees, keeping just a crew of 25 to help finish development on Minecraft: Story Mode for Netflix, as confirmed by the streaming company. USgamer and other outlets like Game Informer heard from different sources that plans for The Walking Dead: Final Season halted after the layoffs. But potential partners have stepped up to offer a way out for Telltale.
"Multiple potential partners have stepped forward to express interest in helping to see The Final Season through to completion," Telltale writes in a tweet from its official Twitter account. "While we can't make any promises today, we are actively working towards a solution that will allow episodes 3 and 4 to be completed and released in some form. In the meantime, episode 2 will release tomorrow across all platforms as planned."
So, while production on Episode 3 and 4 haven't officially kicked-off, as Telltale confirms it will need help from its potential partners to do so, there appears to be interest from around the industry. Though at this stage it's too early to tell who might come in and help Telltale complete The Walking Dead: The Final Season.
This news will mean that a true finale to Telltale's 2012 narrative adventure could be released, but it will be at the expense of 250 employees losing their jobs without severance pay, which was confirmed by multiple former employees at Telltale.
The last bit has left some in the video game community wondering whether or not new financing will see former Telltale employees compensated after having been laid off without any severance packages. A move that has left hundreds of employees scrambling for some kind of safety net.
I would hope this means that you will first pay your entire team their severance, and then proceed to finish the final episodes. I would be fine waiting however long it took to ensure we first treated those who worked so hard with the humanity and respect they deserve.— Cory Barlog Should be writing! (@corybarlog) September 25, 2018
I'm sorry, but this seems gross. Will proceeds go to fired employees without severance pay? And who are these scab studios jumping in? https://t.co/u6F2uvBqeh— David Milner (@DaveMilbo) September 25, 2018
Not to bother, but I’m just curious- How does this work when the reason we were given that we didn’t get severance, and that this layoff didn’t violate WARN was that Telltale was going through a “complete financial shutdown”? https://t.co/HnlDtmqsrN— Emily Grace Buck plz hire TTG devs! (@emilybuckshot) September 25, 2018
Hope that money from the sales is going to the severance pay of the workers you screwed over else this ain't shit https://t.co/V9CbR2EJJ5— Sav Ferguson (@TimesNTroubles) September 25, 2018
Tell us who the profits are going to, because if it's not the devs y'all threw under the bus then nobody gives a shit. https://t.co/B9ZfSbbifH— Renekton Bot (@RenektonBot) September 25, 2018
...so you can pay out severance, right? https://t.co/uH8QfJthPk— Dylan Snyder (@DylanTSnyder) September 25, 2018
Recurring #gamedev timeline:- Force crunch to ship titles at a cost lower than the hours spent would require if OT was paid- Shockingly discover that this isn't sustainable- Lay everyone off- Make company more attractive to investors- FUNDING!- Repeat https://t.co/EL1cca3O83— Tim Borrelli Tim Borrelli All I Hear is Tim Borrel (@Anim8der) September 25, 2018