The remaining staff at Telltale Games has reportedly been laid off. The “skeleton crew” of around 25 employees was let go today. Last month’s “majority studio closure” culled nearly 300 people from the ranks of Telltale Games, with the remaining crew working to fulfill contracts with Netflix.
“Heeeeyyyy remember how there was going to be a skeleton crew staying on for a while and I was part of it? Nah, jk, we all just got laid off, too,” read the tweet.
The “skeleton crew” at Telltale Games was not working to finish The Walking Dead: The Final Season as was originally reported. That team was working with Netflix on the Minecraft Story Mode TV series, and had been working on a Stranger Things video game. The Walking Dead: The Final Season only released two episodes of a scheduled four, and there has been little news about an eventual release of those episodes. Ex-Telltale employees have said that the third episode was moving to certification on the Friday that most were laid off.
Telltale Games grew to around 400 employees after the success of The Walking Dead series in 2012. That game led to hundreds of employees at the company working with various brands including Game of Thrones, Batman, and Minecraft. According to ex-employees, many of those games were not commercially successful, and Telltale was struggling to secure financing throughout September.
Telltale Games majority layoff at the end of September was a sudden kick in the teeth for many employees. Telltale left them with no severance pay, and insurance coverage that would last through the following week. Ex-Telltale employees have since filed a class-action lawsuit against the company. The closure has led to more conversation around unionization and how unsustainable the games industry can be. Ex-Telltale developers have said they were working well past midnight the day before they were fired with no notice.