Activision 'closes music developer 7 Studios'

Activision 'closes music developer 7 Studios'

By Rob Crossley

February 10th 2011 at 4:29PM

Staff say their goodbyes in an emotional outpouring on Twitter

The ongoing Activision cost-cutting operation has claimed its latest scalp, with reports of Los Angeles outfit 7 Studios closing down.

Activision’s decision to close 7 Studios has not been officially announced by the company, but an outpouring from studio staff have made that rumour a near-certainty.

"Activision is shutting down the Guitar Hero business as of today. This includes my studio," read a tweet from what appears to be 7 Studios' Alex Beckers.

News site Joystiq has published a growing list of personal messages from studio staff.

"Lame day, but [I'm] optimistic about the future [and] wish the best to all my current/former colleagues," read a tweet from 7 Studios creative director Dan Lehrich.

7 Studios was bought by Activision in 2009. The move was controversial, as the studio had been working on a DJ game for publisher Genius Products, while it was known Activision was working on a rival game at FreeStyleGames.

The accusation was that Activision bought 7 Studios not for its talent, but to enter the DJ game market unchallenged. Activision denied the claims.

It was reported that, soon after buying out the developer, Activision reduced 7 Studios' staff by half.

FreeStyleGames itself is now threatened by staff redundancies, though none have yet been announced while options are explored.

The declining health of the music games genre has also led to Activation abolishing its entire Guitar Hero business.