Gothic studio Piranha Bytes confirms it’s in a “difficult situation”

Piranha Bytes is seemingly facing closure as part of Embracer Group's ongoing restructure.
pirahna bytes game

Piranha Bytes, the tenured studio behind Gothic, Risen, and Elex, has taken to Twitter / X to confirm media reports of a potential closure, calling its current situation “difficult.” While the team encouraged players not to write them off just yet, it has confirmed ongoing rumours of turmoil are accurate, and that it has faced significant challenges in finding a partner for its next project.

“Yes, it’s true. We, Piranha Bytes, are in a difficult situation. There [is] a lot of news about us circulating right now and this is our answer: Don’t write us off just yet!” the studio said on Twitter / X. “We do everything to continue creating worlds in which you can lose yourself. This is what our hearts have always beaten for.”

“We are convinced that we will succeed. We are creative minds and there’s no lack of ideas! We stick together, no matter what. Now, we are focussing on this goal with all our strength and [will] do whatever it takes to find a partner for this project. As soon as there [is] any news, we will share [it] with you.”

While currently unspecified, it’s believed that Piranha Bytes has been working on a third Elex game – although at this stage, the future of the project remains unclear.

Read: Embracer Group has laid off 900 staff since June 2023 – and it’s not over yet

According to media reports from multiple German outlets, via VGC, Piranha Bytes will face imminent closure if a partner is not found for its current project, potentially becoming yet another victim of parent company Embracer Group’s ongoing restructure.

In 2023, Embracer Group began implementing significant cost-cutting measures in part due to a failed deal worth USD $2 billion – and so far, a number of studios have been shut down or gutted to make up for this loss. Saints Row developer Volition was closed as part of Embracer’s restructure, as was Free Radical Design, and Campfire Cabal. Many other studios were reportedly also put on the market.

For now, it appears there is hope Piranha Bytes remains open, and that its decades-long legacy is preserved, but the studio will likely face significant difficulty in the coming months.

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.