Lightforge Games axes the team amid funding concerns

May 10, 2024 by No Comments

Lightforge Games is the latest studio to be hit by the ongoing struggles in the gaming industry, with the team confirming at the end of May that it was ‘downsizing to a skeleton crew’ and pausing development of the studio’s first game project, ORCS. The news comes after a ‘long period’ of investor forums and publisher meetings, all of which failed to secure funding to support the project moving forward.

An ambitious idea

Project ORCS is an ambitious endeavor from the alumni minds of Blizzard and Epic Games, in development since 2021. By then, Lightforge Games was able to secure solid funding to kickstart development of ORCS, which was designed to be cross-platform. A ‘social experience’ with unparalleled world-building and ‘unprecedented freedom’.

In a claim from the studio, Project ORCS offers elements of Minecraft mixed with the sandbox story-telling mechanics of TTRPG. Unfortunately, those extreme levels of creativity won’t be realized anytime soon, as this all-remote studio is effectively sunsetting.

in An ad on LinkedInLightforge’s CEO, Matt Schembri, said:

While today is a sad day for Lightforge, I’m extremely proud of the work we’ve done over the past four years and the team we’ve built. We always knew it was an ambitious long-shot of a project, but we pursued it because of the shared passion in collaborative storytelling and the fearlessness to do something different as a project and as a studio.

Nothing has been revealed about Project ORCS so far, but the project is still attracting interest as gamers and prospective fans flock to the veteran-backed capabilities of this new studio. Sadly, it has been confirmed that the community’s Discord server and social media profiles will be shut down (probably temporarily) while Lightforge Games attempts to regroup.

Dropping to ‘Skeleton Crew’ means that Lightforge Games hopes to return in the future, but in the interim, nothing is guaranteed.

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