Until Dawn, Dark Pictures Anthology developer Supermassive Games is laying off 90 staff

The Quarry Group
(Image credit: Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • Supermassive Games is a U.K. studio known for working on horror-focused narrative games like Until Dawn, The Dark Pictures Anthology, and The Quarry. 
  • Some of the team's upcoming projects include future titles in The Dark Pictures Anthology and Little Nightmares 3.
  • Per a report from Bloomberg, Supermassive is laying off 90 staff, or around 26% of the studio. 

Another week brings more layoffs in the gaming industry. 

The latest team making cuts is Supermassive Games, the U.K. studio responsible for a number of horror-focused, narrative-driven games, such as 2015's Until Dawn, The Dark Pictures Anthology, and 2022's The Quarry. Per a report from Bloomberg on Monday, Supermassive Games is laying off 90 staff, with 150 workers in total warned that they are at risk. 

Supermassive Games later confirmed that it was conducting layoffs, though the studio did not confirm the number of employees being cut. As of 2023, Supermassive Games employed over 350 workers, meaning the cuts will account for ~26% of the studio's total workforce. 

What does this mean for the Dark Pictures Anthology and other games? 

While it's not clear right now which teams are being affected — for the past decade, Supermassive Games has divided its studio into teams working on different games — 26% of the studio is a large number of employees, and this will likely have some impact on the number of games being made. 

We know that the company is working on the fifth entry in The Dark Pictures Anthology. Titled Directive 8020, this game does not currently have a release date, and is meant to kick off "Act 2" for the anthology of games, for eight games in total. Supermassive Games is also leading development on Little Nightmares 3, which is slated to launch later in 2024 on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Windows PC, PS5, and PS4.

Analysis: An awful year for workers continues

Two months into 2024, we're getting news of additional layoffs on a weekly (if not daily) basis, and with thousands upon thousands of workers now looking for new jobs, I can only pray each time that the bleeding is finally stopping. I want this industry to be healthy, but it's hard to have hope at times.

For Supermassive Games, there are two possibilities ahead. One option is that The Dark Pictures Anthology's second act will take longer to launch, with perhaps even 18 months between releases instead of the yearly cadence the teams accomplished from 2019 through 2022. It's also possible that we won't see another large game like The Quarry anytime soon.

Of the two, I personally would prefer the former. The Dark Pictures Anthology is fine as a bite-sized horror appetizers, but The Quarry is the closest the teams have come to recapturing the glory of Until Dawn. 

On the subject of the latter, I am still looking forward to the Until Dawn remake, which is coming later this year on Windows PC and PlayStation 5. Development on the remake is being led by Ballistic Moon, a team that includes a number of former Supermassive Games staff.

Samuel Tolbert
Freelance Writer

Samuel Tolbert is a freelance writer covering gaming news, previews, reviews, interviews and different aspects of the gaming industry, specifically focusing on Xbox and PC gaming on Windows Central. You can find him on Twitter @SamuelTolbert.