TimeSplitters studio Free Radical reportedly facing closure in December

TimeSplitters studio Free Radical has reportedly been confirmed to be facing imminent closure.
timesplitters game studio closure

TimeSplitters studio Free Radical is reportedly facing imminent closure, with sources telling VGC that recent rumours have proven accurate, and that Embracer Group CEO Lars Wingefors has now confirmed the news. According to these sources, a company-wide email sent by Wingefors acknowledged the studio could be closed on 11 December 2023, at the conclusion of a strategic consultation process.

The reported closure would be the next step in Embracer-wide cost-cutting, a process which has already seen developers from studios including 2K Games, Crystal DynamicsPrivate Division, Take-Two, and Volition losing their jobs.

“We are determined to transform Embracer into a leaner, stronger company,” Wingefors recently said during a public earnings presentation. So far, this has led to over 900 job losses, at least 15 game cancellations, and major studio closures. Per details revealed by Embracer Group, this is just the tip of the iceberg, and restructuring will continue to impact the company in the coming months.

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

With no clear steps forward, and seemingly no plans for a buyout, it does appear Free Radical is now set to close – despite being reformed just two years ago, and despite its ongoing work on a new, highly-anticipated TimeSplitters sequel.

“As we move through the consultation process and face the potential closure of Free Radical Design on 11 December 2023, I want to express my gratitude for your commitment and the remarkable work you’ve done and still keep doing,” Wingefors reportedly wrote to Free Radical staff, in a private email seen by VGC. “This is a challenging time for all of us but especially for you, and our focus is to support you as much as we can during this transition.”

Per VGC, many staff at Free Radical have now posted on LinkedIn that they’re looking for work, suggesting any potential buyout or last-minute save is unlikely. In the event that the studio closes, the hope of a new TimeSplitters will go with it – but more importantly, it will mean the studio’s 100-strong staff will be out of work right before the busy holiday period.

Our thoughts are with those impacted by the reportedly imminent closure of Free Radical.

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.