Immortals of Aveum cover art with graph descending

Ascendant Studios Team Has Less Than 20 Employees on Payroll

The Immortals of Aveum developer Ascendant Studios has been hit with layoffs and has around 20 employees left on the payroll.

Massive layoffs have rocked the last couple of years in the gaming industry. Unfortunately, Ascendant Studios, the developer behind Immortals of Aveum, is the latest team to be hit. As it stands, the team only has a small skeleton crew to keep the studio functions going.

Ascendant Studios’ Majority of Staff Furloughed

Ascendant Studios laid off over half of their staff in September 2023. However, according to Kris Morness, a former employee at Ascendant Studios, the developer has reportedly furloughed more employees, reducing the total amount of working staff once again. As Morness puts it: “Not sure what the numbers are like, but I’m probably guessing around 30 folks.” Although the term furlough does not mean fired, it refers to employees being on reduced hours and little to no income as there is no work. Furthermore, it is estimated that only 20 employees are currently still being paid.

Last week, the studio stated on its official X account (formerly known as Twitter) that an FSR update for Immortals of Aveum on PC was in development, with an HDR update available on consoles. Ever since the release of Immortals of Aveum, the studio has been plagued by layoffs, especially as the game severely underperformed after its launch.

At the time of the first layoff wave, the game’s failure amounted to a workforce decrease of over 45%, according to Ascendant Studios CEO Bret Robbins. While we don’t know if it’s the case, Christoper Tremmel, the Creative Director at Rough House Games, commented on Morness’ post and said companies sometimes do this to avoid paying severance to employees. If true, this is incredibly unfortunate for those affected at Ascendant.

Ascendant Studios Future Plans

Aside from the update above to Immortals of Aveum, Ascendant Studios also announced, in the same video, that they were excited about their next project. The developer seemed to have a new title and was ready to start development. However, the team’s future on the project remains unclear, especially considering the layoffs and furloughs. Furthermore, the PC update for Immortals of Aveum is now outsourced to Enduring Games. The studio is a co-developer alongside Ascendant on Immortals of Aveum.

The news of the furloughs and layoffs is always tough to hear. Seeing developers in the industry take these hits not just to their numbers but to morale is never easy. Much of this is part of the unfortunate negatives of the changing games industry post-COVID. If you wish to learn more about Immortals of Aveum, including its part of the PS Plus Monthly Games, be sure to visit our Guide Hub here.

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