Kuju to close Manila studio

Kuju to close Manila studio

By Rob Crossley

February 3rd 2010 at 4:14PM

Philippines studio closure follows months of intermittent expansion and contraction

Kuju Entertainment’s Asia arm has been cut from the developer’s fleet of studios, the UK-headquartered company has confirmed.

Kuju Manila will be shut down within the first three months of 2010. The move will reduce the group’s overall number of overseas offices to two; with the Czech Republic based Vatra and Zoe Mode San Francisco remaining operational.

“Kuju has conducted a strategic review of its Asian-Pacific operations and concluded that it will no longer maintain a full service studio in the Philippines,” the company revealed in a statement.

“Despite its success in supporting Kuju's European studios and the success of Circus Games for the Wii gaming console, Kuju has concluded that, given the weakness of demand in this part of the video games market, the prospects for further titles of this type are limited.”

The announcement continues months of intermittent expansion and contraction for the independent development group. Back in October 2008 Develop revealed that Kuju opened the Manila office, just a few months before the group announced staff cut backs.

And, as Zoe Mode grew with a new San Francisco studio back in May, it was discovered that Kuju’s Chemistry studio had closed.

It is unclear how many existing studios Kuju has today. The firm’s website suggests that Headstrong, Zoe Mode, DoubleSix and Vatra are the firm’s existing brands.

Kuju recently launched a new Nik Nak studio, though that outfit is thought to have been integrated into another Kuju studio, or has possibly closed down completely.

Develop is talking to Kuju for clarification on matters surrounding Nik Nak.