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Doak left Free Rad earlier this month, company closed

Thursday, 18th December 2008 17:21 GMT By Patrick Garratt

haze20.jpg

Multiple sources have confirmed to VG247 that Free Radical is, indeed, closed.

Edge has posted up a lengthy account of recent events at the firm from what looks to be a good source. Apparently founder Dave Doak left earlier this month, and is now in the process of setting up a new developer with co-founder Steve Ellis called Pumpkin Beach.

Free Radical was working on Battlefront III for LucasArts until recently, but the project was pulled, supposedly relocating at Rebellion.

Haze is cited by the Edge source as being the final nail in the coffin, along with the failure to seal the deal with Lucas.

“They had already started working on TimeSplitters 4, and had been for over a year, but due to the failure of Haze and the deal falling through with Lucas, they couldn’t get a publisher to back them,” said the source.

“They had a last ditch attempt last week down South somewhere, but it came to nothing so I think that was the last hope.”

The gossiper continued: “People have been leaving in droves due to lack of security, poor treatment of staff, better offers and guaranteed work from other local developers such as Monumental Games and one in Derby whose name escapes me [Rebellion has a Derby location - Ed].”

To the 150-200 staff now looking at a salary-free Christmas – we salute you.

Thanks, Blerk.

Breaking news

17 Comments

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  1. morriss

    :(

    #1 6 years ago
  2. LeD

    So nekotcha single-handedly sunked the company he worked for.

    /slow claps
    /is going to Hell

    #2 6 years ago
  3. GordonR

    And yet Spong are quoting Rob Yescombe today saying the company’s not gone down.

    Although bear in mind, it’s
    a) Spong, and
    b) Yescombe

    #3 6 years ago
  4. Retroid

    :(

    #4 6 years ago
  5. patlike

    I’ve added a caveat to this piece. The source does say both Haze and the falling-through of the Lucas deal spelled doom. I’ve made an edit.

    #5 6 years ago
  6. Hunam

    Just saw this on Shacknews:

    Update: Free Radical has not closed, but has instead gone into administration, which will allow the company to continue operating despite an inability to pay its debts.

    “It’s business as usual, although we have asked that almost all of the employees apart from a skeleton crew remain at home,” Cameron Gunn, an employee of administration firm Resolve Partners, told local newspaper This Is Nottinham.

    All Free Radical employees have been paid through the end of December. The studio hopes to make an announcement regarding its fate later this month, following an analysis of its “financial position” by Resolve Partners.

    Along with TimeSplitters 4, rumors suggest Free Radical was working on Star Wars: Battlefront III for LucasArts, with some claiming that the title has since been moved to Star Wars Battlefront: Renegade Squadron developer Rebellion.

    #6 6 years ago
  7. patlike

    Ta.

    #7 6 years ago
  8. wickedman

    this is really sad :’(

    #8 6 years ago
  9. ElfShotTheFood

    The only good to come out of this is that this site has been blissfully Shatner-free for the past couple of days.

    #9 6 years ago
  10. Shatner

    Are you sure about that? And I’m not sure I see the relationship.

    But then, a lot of people do add up 2 and 2 to get 5 and decide that’s the only possible answer.

    #10 6 years ago
  11. patlike

    :D

    #11 6 years ago
  12. patlike

    And :( , obviously.

    #12 6 years ago
  13. morriss

    He’s such a tease :) , or is that :( ?

    #13 6 years ago
  14. fearmonkey

    This is a real shame, but doesn’t surprise me.
    To be honest, I enjoyed the Time Splitters series but it
    was an average shooter. What made it great was all the
    option for gameplay it had.
    Haze was meh and only on PS3, which was a big mistake.
    They and Factor 5 have a similar situation.

    #14 6 years ago
  15. ManicMarvin

    The Edge editor hasn’t been paying attention; the Rebellion Derby studio *is* what’s left of Core Design, as of 2.5 years ago:
    http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/rebellion-acquires-core-design-staff-and-assets

    However, Gusto Games also have a new studio in Derby.

    Commiserations to the FRD guys, good luck finding new work.

    #15 6 years ago
  16. patlike

    Cheers. I’ll change that.

    #16 6 years ago
  17. fearmonkey

    Somehow that Haze picture is more fitting now

    #17 6 years ago