PlayStation Layoffs Lead to Cancellation of Long-Awaited Revival

The recent layoffs that rocked PlayStation have led to the cancellation of a much-anticipated project.

Photo: The Vanamo Online Game Museum

Sony stunned the gaming industry by announcing that they have laid off around 900 PlayStation employees across various divisions and studios. While mass layoffs have become a disturbing trend in the video game industry over the last couple of years, the extent of these layoffs relative to PlayStation’s recent successes makes them especially jarring.

There is much to say about the human tragedy of these layoffs and what they mean for the gaming industry as a whole. To make a long story short, though, there is nothing positive of note to take away from this news. The video game industry appears to be heading for some dark times, and it’s unclear what the other side of that darkness looks like or how we get there.

As if all of that wasn’t enough, we also now know that these layoffs have negatively affected several PlayStation projects including the long-awaited revival of the Twisted Metal franchise.

Bloomberg reporter Jason Schreier recently confirmed that the layoffs that impacted PlayStation developer Firesprite have led to the cancellation of the Twisted Metal game Firesprite was working on. While Schreier also stated that the Twisted Metal game in question was still in the concept phase and hadn’t yet been greenlit, PlayStation appears to be moving on from that project at this time. It’s unclear if there is any chance of another studio picking up the pieces of that project (or starting their own revival).

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What little we knew about that Twisted Metal game suggested it was going to be a live-service title, which could certainly be taken as a red flag. Then again, the competitive car combat series could theoretically lend itself well to such an online multiplayer experience. At the very least, this cancellation, the previously confirmed cancellation of The Last of Us multiplayer project, and Bungie’s reported struggles with their Marathon game all seemingly indicate that PlayStation’s ambitious long-term live-service-focused strategy is not going well.

As for Twisted Metal, it’s hard to imagine how and when the beloved gaming franchise will return at this point. While the Twisted Metal TV series was renewed for a second season, that show didn’t seem to generate the kind of buzz that would almost certainly guarantee a new Twisted Metal game in the near future. Again, it’s possible that another studio could pick up the pieces, but the long hard road to a Twisted Metal revival just got a bit bumpier. Perhaps it’s destined to become a memory before its time.