Immortals of Aveum studio lays off 45% of workforce

Ascendant Studios has reportedly been gutted due to low sales of Immortals of Aveum.
ascendant studios immortals of aveum ea

Immortals of Aveum developer Ascendant Studios has been gutted by layoffs, with around 40 people reportedly departing the company – around half of the entire workforce.

The news was first shared by Ascendant Studios CEO Bret Robbins during an internal staff meeting, where the low sales of Immortals of Aveum were reportedly cited as the reason for the layoffs, per Polygon. Robbins reportedly said the cuts were necessary to keep the studio running.

Notably, Immortals of Aveum only launched in late August 2023. As a full-scale AAA adventure game from a smaller studio that combined novel combat ideas with an original, fantasy-infused plot, there was always an element of risk associated with Immortals. But risk is where unique ideas thrive – and based on the reception, the game’s ambitions paid off.

Despite this, and despite strong critical reviews, it appears the game’s initial sales have not met expectations. Per reporting from Polygon, the game peaked at just 800 players on PC via Steam following launch, and has struggled to achieve widespread recognition.

Read: Immortals of Aveum Review – A Blast from the Past

While there is positive word of mouth around the game, a tough economic climate, and a packed array of late 2023 video games has seemingly conspired against Immortals, with fewer players willing to take a chance on a new property.

In a statement posted to Twitter, Robbins has expressed heartbreak over the decision to layoff staff, calling it “painfully difficult” but “necessary” to ensure Ascendant Studios can sustain itself.

“Today, we are heartbroken as we part ways with friends and colleagues at Ascendant Studios – about 45% of the team,” Robbins said. “This was a painfully difficult, but necessary decision that was not made lightly; nevertheless, we have to make this adjustment now that Immortals of Aveum has shipped.”

“Together, we’ve created a new AAA studio, a new IP, on new technology, during an era of our industry that is exceedingly rare. We’ve poured our passion into Immortals, while wearing our hearts on our sleeves. The studio will continue to work that way as we support the development of this game our Immortals IP moving forward with future updates and offers.”

Impacted staff will be supported by severance packages and assistance to find new jobs in an ever-shrinking global games industry.

Our thoughts are with those impacted by the layoffs at Ascendant Studios.

Leah J. Williams is a gaming and entertainment journalist who's spent years writing about the games industry, her love for The Sims 2 on Nintendo DS and every piece of weird history she knows. You can find her tweeting @legenette most days.