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Eidos Montreal Layoffs

Kotaku reports that THIEF developer Eidos Montreal laid off 27 employees today, following up on earlier reports that between 20 and 50 staff were let go. They got this official statement on the topic:

Yes it is true we've let 27 people go today, unfortunately it's something that every major studio has to do sometimes in order to ensure you have the right set up for current and future projects. It's never a nice thing to do but we are genuinely trying to offer as much support as much as we can. We're trying to re-locate as many people as possible into other roles here or at our other studios and we've been in touch several studios in Montreal to arrange a career day for those affected by this. We're very thankful for all their hard work and we sincerely wish them well.

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33. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 5, 2014, 13:51 Quinn
 
netnerd85 wrote on Mar 5, 2014, 13:05:
Quinn wrote on Mar 5, 2014, 12:49:
Couldn't have said it better than the comment below. I'm right before the last chapter now and only now I know the city like the back of my hand. Before that, it was horror.
Often play games where you instantly know the map?

Not sure about you but when playing a game I don't actually know a map until having played it. Remembering more bits of it as I go along...

Smart-ass comments ftw!

Have you played THIEF? I don't know about you but its map is so utterly crap that I learned to rely on my own mindmap, if you will, instead of that utterly useless crap. And that's quite the feat, actually, because of the ridiculous maze that it is.

PS: I realize I've been bitching allot about this game lately. That's because the game can be that much frustrating at points. Let me grant the game that it's art is magnificent. The City, it's a real place, man. It's beautiful in its own special way. More often than not I've just looked around in awe, silently nodding my utmost respect and appreciation to the people who created it. If all those loading moments were gone, more people roamed the streets and if the homes you enter had people in it... It'd be perfect. Sadly, consoles couldn't handle that.

What I also realized last night, is that nostalgia is a limiting thing. Give the old Thief these graphics, and we basically have THIEF. Yes, the level design of the new THIEF is just as good. During every mission I play I'm simply intimidated by the amount of paths to take and amazed by how many layers every mission has. What I'm saying is that I think it's nostalgia that makes many of us believe the older Thiefs were that much better in every way. They weren't. They were shockingly similar. Obviously that just isn't enough anymore.

This comment was edited on Mar 5, 2014, 14:09.
 
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32. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 5, 2014, 13:05 netnerd85
 
Quinn wrote on Mar 5, 2014, 12:49:
Couldn't have said it better than the comment below. I'm right before the last chapter now and only now I know the city like the back of my hand. Before that, it was horror.
Often play games where you instantly know the map?

Not sure about you but when playing a game I don't actually know a map until having played it. Remembering more bits of it as I go along...
 
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31. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 5, 2014, 12:49 Quinn
 
Couldn't have said it better than the comment below. I'm right before the last chapter now and only now I know the city like the back of my hand. Before that, it was horror.

Also, if you follow the quests from that automatom questgiver, know that you won't get rewarded for it. At all. No talking automaton praising the Builder or the Keeper. Nothing. Just a "thank you" from that tard. Gah.
 
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30. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 5, 2014, 12:17 Zyrxil
 
Jerykk wrote on Mar 5, 2014, 03:19:
The city hub definitely encourages exploration, as there's plenty of loot and collectibles to be found and some of it is pretty well-hidden.

The City hub is a nice concept, just as it was in Thief 3, but it has a fucking awful implementation, even worse than in Thief 3.

First of it's a huge maze. BUT, it's not completely fair maze. So many small side rooms are only unlocked when you take a side mission from Basso or some other client. It doesn't matter if you've purchased the tools, the window doesn't glow or there's clutter in the way that doesn't allow you in. There is no consistency in how the map opens up, and that's very frustrating when you explore some corner only to find the double closed shutters that indicate you need to come back later. That's made even worse by the fact that getting around the City requires a lot of indirect routes, backtracking, and loading screens.

Second, although it's maze, it has a really terribly useless map. You can orient yourself with it, but you're really not able to guide yourself around with it, especially with all the indirect loading screens through windows and twisting passsages you have to take. Also, you can't use it to keep track of what little rooms you've already visited, or what little rooms had a painting you didn't have a razor tool for, or what little rooms had the obvious closed shutters that you'll be able to revisit later after. You find yourself running through covered ground very often, and that's quite tedious when loading screens are everywhere.

Third, TAP TO LIFT TAP TO LIFT TAP TO LIFT because it needs to be mentioned yet again. There are so many fucking load screens. Exploring is not fun when you have to go in a loading screen for a tiny bedroom.

This comment was edited on Mar 5, 2014, 12:26.
 
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29. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 5, 2014, 11:20 avianflu
 
Yes but if the trend continues for studios to let go dev teams almost immediately after a game is released, it would make more sense to hire all of them on contract since they arent going to be retained FT anyway. From a staffing manager's perspective, chronic purges of staff eventually creates a "why bother" attitude in most of the staff, and that's a really bad thing. Put them on contract with an end date with the option to retain longer as needed.

 
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28. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 5, 2014, 10:31 Task
 
Looting was better in the original Thiefs. Each difficulty simply had a certain amount you needed to 'loot' to achieve completing that difficulty. Expert mode had the most loot you needed take (rather than "all"), but you never had to take everything, but you could find the maximum stuff to take if you really wanted to (so you could buy some extra stuff before the next mission). The main objective is always sneaking to a location and stealing a specific thing.

Having never played Thief 1 until this year, I love how each mission is vastly different and introduces new methods each time. The Craigscliff Prison was one of my favorites so far, sneaking into an incredibly claustrophobic place with zombies, and into a Hammerite Prison, and then trying to find 2 people you have to sneak out, finding out 1 was dead, and the other you had to carry out over your shoulder. That was awesome and I was on edge from the tension the whole time.
 
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27. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 5, 2014, 08:15 Mr. Tact
 
The gaming industry isn't the only one which has regular layoffs. I work for a multi-billion dollar revenue, international publishing company and there are layoffs somewhere in the company most years. There are very few jobs these days which are as "safe" as jobs often were 30 or more years ago.  
Truth is brutal. Prepare for pain.
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26. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 5, 2014, 07:51 netnerd85
 
mellis wrote on Mar 5, 2014, 07:03:
Jumping? or lack thereof. Pretty big problem for a protagonist involved in one of the most dexterous professions...
How many games cant you jump in these days? you can get to everywhere you need to get to easily and more. Do you need to bunny hop up the street? I know, I know but thats no reason to bag a game, come on.
 
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25. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 5, 2014, 07:03 mellis
 
netnerd85 wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 23:05:
MajorD wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 20:40:

Have you even played the game? Whether it is Thief or not a Thief game, there is A LOT wrong with it!

Apart from the voices that randomly appear/repeat, what?

Jumping? or lack thereof. Pretty big problem for a protagonist involved in one of the most dexterous professions...
 
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24. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 5, 2014, 05:23 Jerykk
 
In my case, rope arrows are basically the only things I need to buy. The rest of the items serve no purpose because I'm doing a pure ghost playthrough where combat and takedowns are impossible. That said, there are unlit candles placed throughout the city and the only way to light them is with a Fire Arrow. I assume that lighting them all makes something happen because there's a unique VO that plays whenever you light one. Unfortunately, the Fire Arrows cost 600 gold (with the 25% discount) so... yeah. We'll see if I can afford enough to light all the candles before I beat the game.  
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23. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 5, 2014, 05:01 Quinn
 
In THIEF, the thing I hate most is the City Hub. The constant running back and forth -- oh shit, I'm out of rope arrows! -- and for what?! To get the achievement of having collected all the loot in the city? Fuck that. If anyone still has to start playing this game: Do NOT turn "Expensive Resources" on in the custom difficulty mods. I waste a 600 gold (450 gold if you buy a trinket thing) rope arrow to get into a window. You know what's behind that window? A goblet and a golden pen, worth 35 gold total.
It's fucking retarded.
I enabled the mod because I wanted a motivation to steal stuff. But luckily, later in the game the vendors sell trinkets worth 28000 gold. That's literally impossible to get when you have to spend 450 gold per Rope Arrow, sadly. Fyi, I almost always get the "all loot found" per mission, and never lower than 95% found, so that's not it.

Also, as I kinda expected, know that disabling Focus or Focus regen consumptions kinda removes a big chunk of content from the game. There's a levelup Focus system. You can find Focus points in secret areas -- VERY scarse! -- or you can buy them by donating money to the Queen of Beggars. Again, you can't afford both Focuspoints and Rope Arrows with that Expensive Resources mod. What I'm trying to say is..... the difficulty mods knock the game off-balance and it indeed feels like you're playing a game that's... well, improperly balanced. Gah. I know I would've enjoyed the game more if I'd just played Master difficulty without them fucking mods tinkered with.
 
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"Moo," she said.
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22. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 5, 2014, 03:19 Jerykk
 
Squirmer wrote on Mar 5, 2014, 00:30:
netnerd85 wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 23:05:
MajorD wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 20:40:

Have you even played the game? Whether it is Thief or not a Thief game, there is A LOT wrong with it!

Apart from the voices that randomly appear/repeat, what?
We're not talking bugs, we're talking bad design. Things like the constant removal of player control in betrayal of the Looking Glass legacy. The terrible level design that's nothing like the open maps that encourage exploration in the original, but rather a linear, funneled design. The inconsistent stealth mechanics, the laughable plot, the boring setting. There are so many problems.

The city hub definitely encourages exploration, as there's plenty of loot and collectibles to be found and some of it is pretty well-hidden. The story missions are definitely more linear than the levels in the previous games but they aren't as linear as you suggest. There are still branching paths and hidden areas. Finding all the loot and collectibles is still quite the challenge. The stealth mechanics seem pretty consistent to me. I do think that the sound mechanics could use improvement, as different surfaces don't really seem to matter unless they are broken glass or water puddles. Plot isn't laughable so much as mediocre and uninspired. I'm not sure why people are so offended by it. Mediocre and uninspired stories are par for the course in videogames. The setting seems compelling enough to me and carries the same tone and atmosphere as the city in the previous games.

Make no mistake, Thief definitely has issues. The AI is buggy, the door-mashing is annoying, the traversal system isn't entirely consistent, the levels aren't as large or open-ended as the ones in the first two games, there are a few stupid set-pieces and the sound mixing could use some work. However, when I'm sneaking around in the shadows and exploring every nook and cranny for loot, it feels very much like a Thief game.

Anyway, back on topic, layoffs are pretty standard after big AAA games ship. You only need a core team during pre-production, then you start hiring as you ramp up production. Once the game is done, all those new people you hired are sitting around with nothing to do unless you can roll them off onto another project and that's not always possible. It sucks but if you work in the industry, you should come to expect it. The only thing you can do is work your ass off and impress enough people to ensure they'll want you to stick around.

This comment was edited on Mar 5, 2014, 03:24.
 
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21. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 5, 2014, 00:30 Squirmer
 
netnerd85 wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 23:05:
MajorD wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 20:40:

Have you even played the game? Whether it is Thief or not a Thief game, there is A LOT wrong with it!

Apart from the voices that randomly appear/repeat, what?
We're not talking bugs, we're talking bad design. Things like the constant removal of player control in betrayal of the Looking Glass legacy. The terrible level design that's nothing like the open maps that encourage exploration in the original, but rather a linear, funneled design. The inconsistent stealth mechanics, the laughable plot, the boring setting. There are so many problems.
 
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20. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 5, 2014, 00:28 KilrathiAce
 
Large studios are too scared to allow developers truly do what some niche communities want and instead force developers to keep the games saturated to satisfy even casual players to make a quick buck. Result is that the game itself fails.  
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19. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 5, 2014, 00:23 El Pit
 
Unfortunately, they fired the guy working on the "jump anywhere" option two years ago.  
Consoles? I owned two: a Pong clone and an Atari 2600. And that's it.
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18. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 4, 2014, 23:38 Overon
 
MajorD wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 20:37:
Overon wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 18:49:
Rattlehead wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 18:20:
Pretty standard practice to lay off most of the staff after a project has been shipped, and even more common when reviews are not up to par. This is why the gaming industry can kiss my ass as far as I'm concerned.
If that's the case they should lay off the people whose direction resulted in the sub par reviews game. Not the people implementing their will. But that doesn't happen as often as it should.

Fixed that for you.


I accept your fix
 
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17. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 4, 2014, 23:25 siapnar
 
Again, so much love felt between Blues users  
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16. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 4, 2014, 23:05 netnerd85
 
MajorD wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 20:40:

Have you even played the game? Whether it is Thief or not a Thief game, there is A LOT wrong with it!

Apart from the voices that randomly appear/repeat, what?
 
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15. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 4, 2014, 22:26 Beamer
 
Task wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 21:24:
MajorD wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 20:40:
netnerd85 wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 19:08:
Overon wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 18:49:
Rattlehead wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 18:20:
Pretty standard practice to lay off most of the staff after a project has been shipped, and even more common when reviews are not up to par. This is why the gaming industry can kiss my ass as far as I'm concerned.
If that's the case they should lay off the people whose direction resulted in the sub par reviews. Not the people implementing their will. But that doesn't happen as often as it should.
To be fair you can not please a fan boy who's love was a game in the late 90's, as a fan boy with a game in the late 90's its just not going to happen because this period was golden... at least we remember it that way.

The fan boy reviews passed off as objective and professional are a joke and do more damage than the suits.

As a game, there is little wrong with Thief, it's main problem is being called Thief. If it wasn't called Thief, it's main problem would not being called Thief.

Fuck game review fanboys.

Have you even played the game? Whether it is Thief or not a Thief game, there is A LOT wrong with it!


Whiteknighting is a syndrome,

There's that word again. Using it is a syndrome. Other symptoms include posting content not worth reading.
 
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14. Re: Eidos Montreal Layoffs Mar 4, 2014, 21:24 Task
 
MajorD wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 20:40:
netnerd85 wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 19:08:
Overon wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 18:49:
Rattlehead wrote on Mar 4, 2014, 18:20:
Pretty standard practice to lay off most of the staff after a project has been shipped, and even more common when reviews are not up to par. This is why the gaming industry can kiss my ass as far as I'm concerned.
If that's the case they should lay off the people whose direction resulted in the sub par reviews. Not the people implementing their will. But that doesn't happen as often as it should.
To be fair you can not please a fan boy who's love was a game in the late 90's, as a fan boy with a game in the late 90's its just not going to happen because this period was golden... at least we remember it that way.

The fan boy reviews passed off as objective and professional are a joke and do more damage than the suits.

As a game, there is little wrong with Thief, it's main problem is being called Thief. If it wasn't called Thief, it's main problem would not being called Thief.

Fuck game review fanboys.

Have you even played the game? Whether it is Thief or not a Thief game, there is A LOT wrong with it!


Whiteknighting is a syndrome, don't feed it. I read the same rose color tinted glass response on the TWCenter forum about RTW2 with people trying to defend it, when a huge majority agree its a totally gutted experience compared to the first game.
 
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