Last Friday, Telltale Games, the developer behind IP-driven, point-and-click titles like The Walking Dead series, Game of Thrones and Guardians of the Galaxy, laid off most of its staff with the intention of eventually shutting down the company. For both fans and employees, surprised by the move, it was a crushing turn of events.
“Today Telltale Games made the difficult decision to begin a majority studio closure following a year marked by insurmountable challenges,” the company said in an official statement. “A majority of the company’s employees were dismissed earlier this morning, with a small group of 25 employees staying on to fulfill the company’s obligations to its board and partners.”
At the time of the statement on Friday afternoon, those obligations remained unclear, but according to both Game Informer and USGamer, citing unnamed sources, The Walking Dead: The Final Season, which premiered its first episode Aug. 14, would be canceled incomplete. Other reports suggested that The Wolf Among Us 2 was also a victim of the cancellation. The final projects included an adaptation of Minecraft: Story Mode for Netflix — which would make the original 2015 game playing on the streaming platform, and a Walking Dead-like game inspired by the streaming giant’s Stranger Things.
Netflix tells Polygon, one of the games is still happening, to be completed by the Telltale skeleton crew, while the other will spring back to life at a new home.
“We are saddened by news about Telltale Games,” Netflix said in a statement. “They developed many great games in the past and left an indelible mark in the industry. Minecraft: Story Mode is still moving forward as planned. We are in the process of evaluating other options for bringing the Stranger Things universe to life in an interactive medium.”
Netflix and Telltale announced the collaboration in June. Minecraft: Story Mode was planned as a five-episode interactive narrative series, an extension of other interactive series like Stretch Armstrong: The Breakout and Puss in Book: Trapped in an Epic Tale, and was expected to drop this fall. The Stranger Things game was not intended for release on the platform, more of a licensed game in the vein of Telltale’s previous work.