GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble

German site GameStar.de reports (in German) that German developer Crytek is in financial trouble, and may be facing bankruptcy. Most of the story is behind a paywall, though we can see they say that the company secured additional funding in April, but there are questions about how long they will remain viable. DSOGaming summarizes more from the story in English, saying the recently released new version of CryENGINE is not selling well, that development of Ryse was catastrophic, and that there have been delays in making payroll for the 800 employee company.
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44.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 23, 2014, 03:35
44.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 23, 2014, 03:35
Jun 23, 2014, 03:35
 
theyarecomingforyou wrote on Jun 23, 2014, 01:59:
To put things in perspective, Valve has just over 300 employees and is infinitely more successful.

Yeah, but not because of their games, but because they got the digital distribution headstart by forcing all Counter-Strike players into Steam. I bet without Steam Valve would have been bancrupt several years ago!
43.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 23, 2014, 02:53
43.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 23, 2014, 02:53
Jun 23, 2014, 02:53
 
CrabbyGnome wrote on Jun 22, 2014, 20:03:
They have 800+ employees and they think Homefront will become a franchise for them.

on the heals of the first Homefront? They couldn't afford the marketing bill to undo the bad memories of the first one.
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42.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 23, 2014, 02:24
42.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 23, 2014, 02:24
Jun 23, 2014, 02:24
 
david casagrande wrote on Jun 23, 2014, 01:53:
lack of efficiency meaning poor performance? or lack of efficiency meaning difficult to develop in-game assets, levels, geometry, etc?

If you were replying to me, I was referring to what I quoted from harlock, his exact words being "workflow efficiency." Although Star Citizen also has performance issues (which may or may not get ironed out), I was commenting more about the issues with designing a game around the CryEngine. An engine that isn't built in-house requires a lot of training, adaptation, etc., that relies on strong documentation and production efficiency. UE was created for developers first, gamers (fancy effects) second, while the early CryEngine releases were the other way around.

He also mentions community and quotes a post mentioning UE and Unity - the former is a good example of a internally mature engine (new developers have access to everything they need and then some), while the latter is an externally mature engine (it's easy to get examples and help from the community). The CryEngine was far too closed and designed with keeping "hit" singleplayer games in-house, which is why it's taken off with multiplayer games. Only recently has Crytek decided to open up by releasing Warface (a F2P demo more than anything) and a change of pricing.
41.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 23, 2014, 01:59
41.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 23, 2014, 01:59
Jun 23, 2014, 01:59
 
To put things in perspective, Valve has just over 300 employees and is infinitely more successful.
"The price of freedom is eternal vigilance."
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40.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 23, 2014, 01:53
40.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 23, 2014, 01:53
Jun 23, 2014, 01:53
 
lack of efficiency meaning poor performance? or lack of efficiency meaning difficult to develop in-game assets, levels, geometry, etc? We probably shouldn't be talking about this in relation to a completely buggy PRE/PRE-alpha TEST build of Star Citizen. I agree the crytek games you listed are lacking. They are also mostly free to play. Maybe they just cant compete with UE? Look how many games use some iteration of UE.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Unreal_Engine_games

I can, however, count on one hand how many of these games were truly great per iteration. Did Roberts say why he decided to go against UE?
39.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 23, 2014, 01:46
39.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 23, 2014, 01:46
Jun 23, 2014, 01:46
 
Times are different. I remember a time when ID software developed the quake engine. They started to license it out to very few select developers (raven etc). ID said they would license it out if they saw or believed in the product/vision that particulate developer was going for. Now these companies like epic/dice/ID/crytek literally are in the business of selling their game engines to whomever will pay for it. we are seeing hundreds of mediocre games that have an "unreal/crytek" stamp on the box. the truth is the engine is only as good as the vision/assets you put into it. id/epic/crytek are similar. they develop one or two really cool games to showcase their engine. Sales from the game probably go to developing their next product. Its easy to see how any company can go under with this cycle if they get stuck behind due to low sales etc. I think we need crytek. Games like FarCry and Crysis help push this and other industries to making us cooler shit we can complain about on here guys.

38.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 23, 2014, 01:17
38.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 23, 2014, 01:17
Jun 23, 2014, 01:17
 
Zombiegoat213 wrote on Jun 22, 2014, 19:07:
So basically this is sort of like what happened with id Software ...
No. Concentrating on the console market wasnt the problem. 800 employees with too few game releases. And those releases were not very successful. Hence ... not enough money to pay those 800 people. THAT is the problem with Crytek.
37.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 22, 2014, 23:01
37.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 22, 2014, 23:01
Jun 22, 2014, 23:01
 
harlock wrote on Jun 22, 2014, 15:32:
cryengine isnt that much more powerful than UE, on top of that its far less optimized, far less open, and doesnt have a fraction of the same size community working on it

Quite true. There are actually a lot of games that use CryEngine but for the most part I haven't been impressed by its implementation. I've played some of the multiplayer ones, such as Warface, ArcheAge (which has been in Russian beta for months), and Warface, not to mention what we've seen of Star Citizen, and all of them have major performance (optimization) issues. It's powerful but difficult to work with and I think one of the reasons they opened it up recently (by making it more affordable) is to increase the size of its community. It's important to realize that the CryEngine has been used much more for online games than people would suspect.

I also agree about the lack of efficiency which again we can see in Star Citizen (which even with a production master like Roberts is suffering from it). For those suggesting he might purchase Crytek - unlikely, but the death of Crytek and work on the engine means he would be forced to bring some of their employees into his project. Another reason Crytek is opening up their engine is because they are essentially putting themselves out there for future purchase if things go wrong. It's very unlikely all 800 employees would be part of the deal, and I could see a lot of them going to projects that are using CryEngine 3/4 (especially the multiplayer titles I mentioned previously, as well as many others).
36.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 22, 2014, 20:47
36.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 22, 2014, 20:47
Jun 22, 2014, 20:47
 
DrEvil wrote on Jun 22, 2014, 20:00:
Zombiegoat213 wrote on Jun 22, 2014, 19:07:
So basically this is sort of like what happened with id Software; great PC tech demos, story is a little washed-out, not much follow-through in licencing the engines for third-party companies, and following it all up with focusing on the console market.

Too bad.

Except iD actually made some games that sold really well: Quake I-III, Doom I-II, and made quite a bit of money through licensing for a while.

So it's actually not like that at all; all indications are that iD was far more commercially successful than Crytek game sales wise.

(Yes I'm ignoring Rage.)

Indeed. And the Quake engine still lives on in Source and IW(Call of Duty series), which are rooted in Quake and Quake 2.

Notable 3rd party id engine titles are Medal of Honor, Call of Duty, Soldier of Fortune, Half-Life, RTCW, Jedi Knight, Alice, Star Trek Elite Force, Prey, Heretic, etc. Cryengine didn't see anywhere near the adoption. id stopped innovating while Unreal continued to provide tools and assistance for all platforms, so idtech was supplanted as the go to engine for licensing.
35.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 22, 2014, 20:12
35.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 22, 2014, 20:12
Jun 22, 2014, 20:12
 
I think the piracy of Crysis 1 was a good sign that while there was demand for their product that they just needed to improve quality? It wasn't a good value to buy it but it was cool to look at and entertaining to play for a while. By poor quality I mean terrible performance, weak story and terrible post-release patch support for multiplayer.
Perpetual debt is slavery.
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34.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 22, 2014, 20:03
34.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 22, 2014, 20:03
Jun 22, 2014, 20:03
 
They have 800+ employees and they think Homefront will become a franchise for them.
33.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 22, 2014, 20:00
33.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 22, 2014, 20:00
Jun 22, 2014, 20:00
 
theyarecomingforyou wrote on Jun 22, 2014, 18:52:
I don't want to see Crytek disappear, as I much prefer CryEngine to Unreal Engine, but the company needs to substantially restructure itself to remain relevant. I just hope this doesn't impact Star Citizen.

Meh, even if they go under the engine will almost certainly live on with some other company. And it might be better if things go that route, frankly. 800 employees is a bit insane for a company that's not just constantly pounding out hit AAA titles.
32.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 22, 2014, 20:00
32.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 22, 2014, 20:00
Jun 22, 2014, 20:00
 
Zombiegoat213 wrote on Jun 22, 2014, 19:07:
So basically this is sort of like what happened with id Software; great PC tech demos, story is a little washed-out, not much follow-through in licencing the engines for third-party companies, and following it all up with focusing on the console market.

Too bad.

Except iD actually made some games that sold really well: Quake I-III, Doom I-II, and made quite a bit of money through licensing for a while.

So it's actually not like that at all; all indications are that iD was far more commercially successful than Crytek game sales wise.

(Yes I'm ignoring Rage.)
31.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 22, 2014, 19:58
31.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 22, 2014, 19:58
Jun 22, 2014, 19:58
 
Burrito of Peace wrote on Jun 22, 2014, 13:54:
harlock wrote on Jun 22, 2014, 13:15:
cryengine is being DESTROYED by UE4 in the prefab engine market

If only because UE4 is much, much easier to work with. Epic clearly put more time and effort in to the workflow process to make it easier for first time users to just jump in and start creating, learning as you go.

Not to mention complete source code access for the engine!
30.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 22, 2014, 19:52
30.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 22, 2014, 19:52
Jun 22, 2014, 19:52
 

I guess those Free-To-Play titles have been working out well form them.
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29.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 22, 2014, 19:19
29.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 22, 2014, 19:19
Jun 22, 2014, 19:19
 
I was gonna mention the id thing myself.

WTF do they have 800 employees though? Presumably they're working on a few games that aren't yet mentioned I suppose, but that's means they're essentially spending about a million dollars a week on payroll (random guess)

They obviously need to cut some costs. Sorry for the people involved but...

Would rather they stay viable because more companies in the engine mix is healthier for the industry, so hope they get by.
28.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 22, 2014, 19:07
28.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 22, 2014, 19:07
Jun 22, 2014, 19:07
 
So basically this is sort of like what happened with id Software; great PC tech demos, story is a little washed-out, not much follow-through in licencing the engines for third-party companies, and following it all up with focusing on the console market.

Too bad.
Avatar 57693
27.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 22, 2014, 18:52
27.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 22, 2014, 18:52
Jun 22, 2014, 18:52
 
The original Far Cry was excellent for the time, especially technologically. The acting was a bit weak and the ending was terrible but the open world gameplay redefined the genre. As for Crysis, it was a bad game - it was terribly optimised, the gameplay was weak, the narrative cliched and it just wasn't any fun.

For me it was Crysis 2 that was the best game in the series, as while it was more linear it was a lot more fun and the suit settings made a lot more sense. It had a decent Hollywood-style over-the-top narrative. Crysis 3 was decent but forgettable - it was completely outshone by Far Cry 3, which was more fun, better optimised and had a better story.

I don't want to see Crytek disappear, as I much prefer CryEngine to Unreal Engine, but the company needs to substantially restructure itself to remain relevant. I just hope this doesn't impact Star Citizen.
"The price of freedom is eternal vigilance."
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26.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 22, 2014, 18:49
Cutter
 
26.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 22, 2014, 18:49
Jun 22, 2014, 18:49
 Cutter
 
Johnny Ringo said it best....
"Well, he’s not a villain Summer, but he shouldn’t be your hero. He’s more like a demon, or a super fucked up god." - Morty Smith
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25.
 
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble
Jun 22, 2014, 17:45
Quboid
 
25.
Re: GameStar: Crytek in Financial Trouble Jun 22, 2014, 17:45
Jun 22, 2014, 17:45
 Quboid
 
Ryse is probably the reason for this. That game looked like everything wrong with big games - graphics over gameplay, QTEs, cinematic nonsense; this still is expensive even if development goes smoothly. It's a shame but they're a long way from being the guys who made Crysis, Far Cry and going way back; X-Isle. I loved that tech demo.
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