Submitted by Bitsnark 1105d ago | opinion piece

Make Believe: Sony close down Studio Liverpool

A sad thing happened today; Sony announced the closure of Studio Liverpool.

Its not appropriate to go into the reasons why they’re closing it, short version: it’s crushingly stupid (but that is another story for another time), but of more relevance, would be to reflect on the sort of the legacy the studio has created within this lovely industry of ours.

In case you’re unaware or you’ve merely forgotten who they were, Studio Liverpool were the horrendously talented folks behind the WipEout series of games among other things. (Industry, Psygnosis, SCE Studio Liverpool, Sony)

-Mika-  +   1105d ago
Wow this is the 3rd sony studio to close this year after making a vita game. Hmmm... coincidence or maybe something else.
shutUpAndTakeMyMoney  +   1105d ago
Not to troll but I kinda see why they shut them down.
They don't really make big money makers. Also they don't make enough variety of games.

Game title Year released Platform(s)
Formula One 2001 2001 PlayStation 2
Wipeout Fusion 2002 PlayStation 2
Formula One 2002 2002 PlayStation 2
Formula One 2003 2003 PlayStation 2
F1 04 2004 PlayStation 2
Wipeout Pure 2005 PlayStation Portable
F1 05 2005 PlayStation 2
F1 06 2006 PlayStation 2, PlayStation Portable
Wipeout Pulse 2007 PlayStation Portable, PlayStation 2
Formula One Championship Edition 2007 PlayStation 3
Wipeout HD 2008 PlayStation 3
Wipeout HD Fury 2009 PlayStation 3
Wipeout 2048 2012 PlayStation Vita


That is what corporations do.
#1.1 (Edited 1105d ago ) | Agree(10) | Disagree(4) | Report | Reply
Anon1974  +   1105d ago
They wouldn't have been around at all if they hadn't been making any money, and clearly if Sony wanted something different, they would have been making something different. Hopefully they're just reorganizing and they find homes for everyone.

Man, I miss the games Psygnosis used to put out. Those were some of my favourites back on the Amiga. Lemmings, Barbarian, Rastan, Shadow of the Beast, Drakan, Leander. It's sad to think a studio with such a varied development library was regulated to just remaking F1 and Wipeout over and over again. But, that's business.
Blankman85  +   1105d ago
I wonder who approved and published all those games. . .Oh yeah, SONY did!
N4G is so fickle, you couldn't say a single bad thing about Sony Liverpool before this closure without recieving a barrage of disagrees and a death threat or 2. But now that they are no longer a part of SONY, it is okay to tear them a new one to justify the almighty SONY's decision to sack them.
Sizzon  +   1105d ago
Sucks to hear, always liked the wipeout racing games.
Brosy  +   1105d ago
I thought Wipeout was mediocre. More of a niche title. I did really like Destruction Derby though. Someone needs to make a new Destruction Derby game. I guess you could call it a niche title too.But I found DD to be more fun than Wipeout.
Sizzon  +   1105d ago
DD 2 on playstation 1 was pretty fun :-)
borisfett  +   1105d ago
Of all the studios, why this one? *sad face*
ABizzel1  +   1105d ago
People weren't buying WipEout and Motorstorm.
shutUpAndTakeMyMoney  +   1105d ago
Becuz there are better studios who make more cash like Naughty Dog.

Sony is about money and don't want to be wiped out.
#3.2 (Edited 1105d ago ) | Agree(1) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
aimeezhu   1105d ago | Spam
SecretPsycho  +   1105d ago
Wipeout was a playstation classic...gonna miss em :c
Knight_Crawler  +   1105d ago
Just because the studio is closed that does not mean Sony cant give it to another studio.

The game still lives even with out its original creators.
tachy0n  +   1105d ago
but it can pretty much lose its essence...
just like NFS: most wanted which looks pretty much to be a burnout paradise 2 with cops....

#5.1.1 (Edited 1105d ago ) | Agree(2) | Disagree(1) | Report
feeler103  +   1105d ago
Sony can still make wipeout, but just with a new studio.
Mustang300C2012  +   1105d ago
Sony is doing exactly what a company has to do. This is no different than when MS decided to close internal studios that were not producing. It is good and bad. You can't keep a company that isn't going to produce results that you need. The games these companies made are still playable.
darkpower  +   1105d ago
There are different reasons, though.

Sony has a LOT of first party studios right now, and, as stated before, they didn't create enough games to warrant keeping it open. The games they made might get made by another first party studio.

MS, on the other hand, seemed to keep closing them and closing them only to see them gobble up exclusive third party DLC and things like that, making it seem as though MS was just trying to save money for "me too" ware and didn't really care for first party because they were too busy trying to be Sony to beat Sony.

Slight difference.
Mustang300C2012  +   1105d ago

We already saw this coming and being this is the third studio since it shouldn't be a surprise. MS made a decision based on climate and risk at the time. Sony is trying to save money where studios are not producing. That is the only difference between the two companies which is supposed to produce the same results. Nothing to do with MS trying to be Sony.
humbleopinion  +   1105d ago
Actually, it seems that more recently MS is opening more and more studios and also acquiring others, not closing them.
ABizzel1  +   1105d ago

This is not an insult to you.


I don't think a lot of people on here understand business. If a company isn't performing up to the organizations expectations they're going to be 1. shut down, 2. merged with another company (already happened in this case), 3. given another task within the company. WipEout and Motorstorm have been struggling to sell over 500K (generally the break even point for most A - AAA games) copies of their franchises so it was time to let them go. It sucks that it happened, but that's just business.

Sony is in a financial crisis and they need to weed out anything that is unproductive. Now seeing how each of their developers constantly work together I'm sure many of them will be picked up by another First Party developer, and most of the programmers / coders will be picked up by 3rd party devs. to help with PS versions of their games.

Sony makes too much of everything. They have too many version of their HDTV's, too many games in over crowded genres (Racing / Shooters), too many phones (especially overseas), too many laptops, and a lot of overpriced items (especially tablets). But that's going a bit too far into Sony Corp. rather than PS. Should Sony develop / publish less games like MS, IMO no, but they should develop / publish more diverse games in genres they're weak in or that are lacking solid support like:

Adult (Heavy Rain / Beyond)
Cinematic (Uncharted / The Last of Us)
RPG's / JRPG's (Legend of Dragoon?)
F2P (DC Universe, why isn't Planetside 2 not coming to PS3)
CO-OP (People enjoy playing together)
Fighting (PASBR, now give us a real fighter)
Retro (Contra / Bionic Commando)

At the end of the day there are too many racing / car games on the PS3 (17 excluding all the sequels). Not to mention the racing genre isn't nearly as strong as it was back on the PS2, so it makes sense to shut down a studio that only made racing games.

So racing genre sales are down, while reviews are high / studio performance is down, and the company is getting ready to launch a new console, therefore, they had to go.
#7.2 (Edited 1105d ago ) | Agree(3) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
Mustang300C2012  +   1105d ago
r21  +   1105d ago
This is unfortunate news for everybody, WipEout fans and the staff who made them :C
Sadly I feel fanboys are gonna use this news as another way to start flam wars :L
VonBraunschweigg  +   1105d ago
Sad news, I always loved WipEout and thought it was one of the coolest flagship series for the Playstation brand. Not sure if this means no new WipEout game for PS4, but it's still sad news when the original devs have to quit. I had a lot of fun with WipEout HD's online Eliminator and Zone mode. Phantomspeed. Supersonic. Zen! Super Zen:)
MadMen  +   1105d ago
With the money SONY is shedding and restructuring I am sure they are looking at all profit margins across the board and either consolidating or closing in order to bring in costs.

Something the Government needs to learn how to do, when they cant pay their bills.
Jdoki  +   1105d ago
"Its not appropriate to go into the reasons why they’re closing it, short version: it’s crushingly stupid "

Riiiight... It's safe to assume that they closed the team because they are not making enough (or any) money for Sony.. Who have just posted a huge loss. They also have mentioned that they are reallocating people to other teams if they want to go.

Yeah... crushingly stupid!! /s I guess it's lucky the author isn't a CEO.

Sure, it's a shame that a prestigious developer has gone; Psygnosis were an awesome company, and it was nice that was acknowledged when Sony bought them (even if they were rebranded to Studio Liverpool). I'm sure we will still see another Wipeout title (or two). I wouldn't be surprised if we see at least another round or two of reorganisation over the next couple of years. Times are hard.
borisfett  +   1105d ago
Then why hasn't Team Ico been shafted yet?
DarkTower805  +   1105d ago
Team Ico just put out an HD remake which is VERY cheap to make that sold over 600,000 copies and counting. Thats a lot of profit.
PirateThom  +   1105d ago
Team ICO is a very small team and part of the bigger Studio Japan. Once The Last Guardian comes out, I have no doubt that studio will cease to exist.

As for that collection, Team ICO didn't have anything to do with the remastering, it was redone by Bluepoint.
DarkTower805  +   1105d ago
@Pirate, ahh I didn't know that. But it still is a Team Ico project that's bringing in the money, no? Its good sales show that there is still a big market for Team Ico games. Plus like you said, TLG is coming which was even promoted on the Collections disc.
DigitalAnalog  +   1105d ago
Since Team ICO is already part of Japan Studio, they could've easily relocated their resources to other JS projects considering that they all work in the same building and is run with barely 50 people. Heck, the RAIN IP that was released on gamescom utilized TLG boy's animations. So what's stopping them from supporting the other aspects of the studio?

The problem with Team ICO is that their ambitions are too big but does not have the manpower to pull it off. I don't even think they could release a game if they were to design an IP for the PS4.
#11.1.4 (Edited 1105d ago ) | Agree(0) | Disagree(0) | Report
Umbrella Corp  +   1105d ago
RIP hopefully the wipeout ip comes back with a different dev.
Straightupbeastly  +   1105d ago
Sony better start charging for online next-gen, and make an affordable yet profitable system, or else they will be toast.
NastyLeftHook0  +   1105d ago
nah, i like sony the way they are...making games, free online, awesome exclusives, and the best graphics. you can keep paying for online though, im sure you enjoy doing it.
IQUITN4G  +   1105d ago
Times have changed with this partly why Sony are not the force they once were. Hopefully it wont mean the end of Wipeout which is or at least was classy. This studio defined cool more than anything else back then on ps1 and it is a shame they're no longer

Makes you wonder just how much of an impact Wipeout actually was back then and how much of a help it was for Sony in catapulting the Playstation brand
#15 (Edited 1105d ago ) | Agree(4) | Disagree(2) | Report | Reply
wenaldy  +   1105d ago
Perfect time for trolls to show up..
Sidology  +   1105d ago
Sad, sad news.
Ingram  +   1105d ago
I will pass on PS4, seriously dissapointed with SCE. So we get turds like eyepet and little deviants just because your investors and lawyers are retarded family guys and casual players, huh? We get overpriced products, broken products, months or years after the competition, they steal our credit cards numbers, you shoot down linux, you take out retro, Vita takes 9 months just for playing PLAYSTATION 1 GAMES.

Always been a Sony fanboy, not anymore.

SCE is just a cluster of executives and lawyers disrespecting and leeching off people who trust them. They can rot in hell from now on.
TheColbertinator  +   1105d ago
Sony just drowned their 2nd best studio.Trust me this will hurt.
Surfaced  +   1105d ago
Bad choice. They shouldn't have done this.

2048 may not have been perfect but Liverpool has consistently delivered some of SCE's best titles. WipEout HD Fury is one of the PS3's best games.
#20 (Edited 1105d ago ) | Agree(2) | Disagree(3) | Report | Reply
deletingthis34675334  +   1105d ago
Pulling an EA much?
dubt72  +   1105d ago
Another domino.
Kratoscar2008  +   1105d ago
Hope the guys goes to another studios so their talent wont be wasted.
strauser360  +   1105d ago
Why do they use the phrase "horrendously talented"?
metsgaming  +   1105d ago
COD generation is ruining the industry. All people buy is COD and dont even bother giving much of anything else a chance. Disgusting.
smashcrashbash  +   1105d ago
As soon as Sony closes a studio the trolls arrive in force. Microsoft has closed down several studios and there was never this big a fuss about it. Sony still own Wipeout and the studio being gone won't mean the end of the Wipeout series. So all the naysayers can go now. I know you can't wait to see studios close so you can jump in but try to keep it in your pants.

@ wenaldy. You said it.
#26 (Edited 1105d ago ) | Agree(4) | Disagree(3) | Report | Reply
Blankman85  +   1105d ago
What studios are these that Microsoft have shut down? This year alone I can count 3 from SONY. I can only recall 2 this whole gen from Microsoft.
Haha123  +   1105d ago

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