Bossa Studios–the team behind I Am Bread and the Surgeon Simulator series–has reportedly laid off 19 employees. That is roughly one-third of the company’s workforce, with 40 people left to make the cooperative survival-adventure game Lost Skies.
GamesIndustry.biz confirmed the firings at Bossa Studios, with co-founder Henrique Olifiers saying the cutbacks are because of a “perfect storm of events.” Olifiers cited rising operational costs, funding decisions being pushed back in the industry, and big holiday games hurting indie titles. Bossa Studios hasn’t released a new game in the past year, with Lost Skies planned for this year. It was unveiled at the Humble Games Showcase this past May.
“Resulting from this blue moon situation, we had to make the difficult decision to reshape the studio to reflect the position we find ourselves in at the end of this year, focusing all our efforts now on Lost Skies,” said Olifiers. “This means we find ourselves in the heartbreaking position of having to let roughly one-third of the studio go–amongst them, some of our closest colleagues.”
The layoffs come less than a year since Olifiers explained to GamesIndusty.biz why Bossa sold off its rights to Surgeon Simulator and I Am Bread to TinyBuild to create Lost Skies. At the time, Olifiers explained: “We are doubling down on a new vertical, so it makes sense for us to have a war chest that enables us to weather any kind of delays or large investment we decide to make in this new game we’re making.”
Last year was brutal for game developers, as large companies like Ubisoft, Unity, and Amazon Games cut jobs. Layoffs and studio closures were a major storyline for 2023 with estimates pointing to 7,000 jobs lost.