After news of Volition's closing, Saints Row fans are mourning their beloved franchise as well as the 2022 game's second major patch.
Yesterday, August 31, parent company Embracer Group announced that Saints Row studio Volition would be shut down "with immediate effect," closing the developer after 30 years. Now, long-time fans of the action-packed series are flocking to its subreddit to send the franchise off together.
The subreddit is now full of posts like the ones below, with players of 2022's Saints Row reboot saddened by the closing of the veteran studio. The post just below is also urging people who haven't tried out the 2022 reboot yet to do so quickly, since it was just revealed that the latest Saints Row is one of the 'free' PS Plus games for September 2023.
"Regardless of my thoughts on the reboot, I hope the developers can move on to better things at new jobs. Losing your place of work is always a terrible thing," reads one comment. "You can be extremely vocal about how you personally and strongly dislike the direction that the Saints Row series went all you want but it still doesn't change the fact that this is still sad to see regardless," chimes in another.
Other posts express frustration with parent company Embracer Group for the decision to shutter Volition entirely. There's a lot of speculation going around that Embracer needed this "restructure" following a $2 billion deal with Saudi Arabia that fell through earlier this year, making Volition a casualty of its parent company's failures.
There's also a lot of concern about what might happen with the second planned patch for Saints Row 2022, which Volition was previously working on. One subreddit post reasons that Embracer may well pass development of the patch on to another studio, considering it now owns the license to Saints Row, but there's been no official word on the matter right now.
In fact, a former Volition developer revealed on Twitter that they had "no idea" what would happen to the planned patch. They also add that it'll be "extremely upsetting" if the patch is canned entirely, as one former Volition developer, Mike Watson, gave his all to development of the patch during the final days of his battle against cancer.
Fellow developers at other studios, meanwhile, have offered up words of support and encouragement for those affected by Volition's closure, like Doom pioneer John Romero just below. "RIP Volition. Red Faction Guerrilla is an all-timer," added Night in the Woods developer Scott Benson. "Throwing one back for my homies at Volition tonight," tweeted Undead Labs dev Tim Borrelli.
I am so sorry and surprised to hear of Volition's closing, a studio with a long and important legacy. For those affected, we do have several openings https://t.co/iXvlfuvvD3. Hope everyone lands on their feet. pic.twitter.com/YtKbau9cvnAugust 31, 2023
Elsewhere, another former Volition staffer claimed that due to the date on which Volition was shuttered (August 31), employee health insurance effectively ends immediately. If Embracer had closed the studio just one day later, potentially hundreds of employees would have reportedly had another full month of health insurance coverage – a valuable cushion when you've just lost your job.
A funny thing about Embracer shutting Volition down today is that it's the very last day of the month, which means our insurance ends TODAY. If we had been closed tomorrow we would have had insurance for all of September.August 31, 2023
Yesterday, Volition said that it was working to "provide job assistance and help smooth the transition" for affected employees. It's not entirely clear what that entails right now, but it could mean that studio leadership, or parent company Embracer, help find affected employees new positions at other developers under their ownership, assuming they want to stick with the company.
This is just the latest in a series of layoffs at studios under Embracer's leadership, but Tomb Raider developer Crystal Dynamics reassured fans that it wasn't affected earlier this year.