Mobile game development at a big publisher has as much turnover and volatility as traditional gaming.
King, which is now a subsidiary of Activision, has closed down Singapore-based developer Nonstop Games. King acquired the studio in 2014 following the success of the Warcraft-like Facebook strategy game Heroes of Honor. While King was at the height of its power in 2014 with casual hits like Candy Crush Saga dominating the $30 billion-plus mobile gaming industry, Nonstop provided a way for the publisher to appeal to a more hardcore audience.
“After careful consideration, we have taken the difficult decision to close our Singapore studio,” a King spokesperson explained in a statement.
This studio closure will involve some people leaving King, but the publisher said it is working to find new positions for the staff.
“We have a fantastic team and world-class talent in the studio and will be working hard to ensure as many people as possible stay within King,” said the spokesperson. “For those leaving the company, we are committed to ensuring the best possible transition and assistance.”
Closing Nonstop makes some sense considering that King now has no shortage of hardcore properties to work with thanks to Activision. The company will continue making casual games itself, but it can now work with studios like Infinity Ward (Call of Duty), Blizzard Entertainment (Diablo, Warcraft, and StarCraft), and more to bring major brands to mobile devices if it chooses to further pursue that strategy.
For now, however, King is sticking with its casual approach. That most recently involved the launch of Farm Heroes Super Saga, a sequel to the original Farm Heroes Saga, for mobile devices. And King is working with CBS on a Candy Crush-related game show.