Microsoft cancels 'Microsoft Flight', lays off Vancouver staff

Microsoft Vancouver, the studio working on a AAA Kinect Shooter, has reportedly laid off all 35 members of its staff and closed its studio.

Microsoft Studios in Vancouver, the studio working on a AAA Kinect Shooter, has cancelled Microsoft Flight and Project Columbia and reportedly laid off all 35 members of its staff.

In a statement obtained by Polygon, Microsoft said: "Microsoft Studios has decided to end development on Microsoft Flight and Project Columbia. As a result of this action, some positions within the development teams have been eliminated. Microsoft human resources is working with the affected individuals to find new roles within the company."

"Microsoft Studios is always evaluating its portfolio of products to determine what is best for gamers, families and the company, and this decision was the result of the natural ebb and flow of our portfolio management. Many factors were considered in the difficult decision to stop development on Microsoft Flight and Project Columbia, but we feel it will help us better align with our long-term goals and development plans. For Microsoft Flight, we will continue to support the community that has embraced the title and the game will still be available to download for free at http://www.microsoft.com/games/flight/."

The statement continues: "Microsoft Studios is invested in British Columbia and still has several teams, both in Vancouver and Victoria, which will continue to produce the best entertainment and gaming experiences possible."

A post appearing on a Facebook page dedicated to innovation in Vancouver announced that the entire staff at Microsoft Vancouver had been laid off as a result of the project cancellations.

The post reads: "We've just gotten word that the entire studio at Microsoft Games Studios on 840 Cambie has been laid off. 35 people in total. This is nuts. We'll update with more when we can."

Some Microsoft Vancouver employees took to Twitter to hint at the lay-offs, such as Tara Mustapha who tweeted: "This is what one wears when they get laid... Off. #jobsearch" and "These guys... Hella awesome <333 adopt one today!"

Another former employee, Mia Jerri, tweeted: "Now I can add 'casualty of the Vancouver games industry' to my list of achievements. On a good note, the weather is LOVELY today."

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