Runescape studio Jagex laid off 13 members of the development team for its upcoming free-to-play massively multiplayer online browser title Transformers Universe, reports Eurogamer.
The layoffs are due to Jagex switching to established outside technology for the remainder of the game's development, a move from using the company's in-house engine. The switch means that less staff are needed to complete the project.
"Having reviewed the remaining work required for the upcoming Transformers Universe launch we have made the decision to scale the development team back slightly," the company said in statement.
Eurogamer reports that Jagex is being pressured to release before the end of 2013 and hopes to speed up development on the title, which Eurogamer reports is in a "precarious position." According to their sources, the layoffs won't "adversely impact" the game, although currently there are internal concerns about the game's quality.
"We have always been committed to developing the highest quality games and services and are confident that this reduction will not adversely impact the game," continues the statement. "The vast majority of the Transformers studio will be unaffected by this move. On a positive note a significant portion of the talent potentially effected have already been reallocated to support the upcoming release of RuneScape 3 in HTML 5 and the RuneScape 3 on tablets project slated for the end of the year. Regrettably we have not been able to find suitable roles for 13 members of the team who will be leaving the studio later this month."
Jagex said more information on Transformers Universe will be shared "shortly" on the game's official website. Polygon has reached out to the studio for more information and will share details as we have them.