Earlier this week, Kindly Beast, the studio that brought the world the retro art-style survival horror game Bendy and the Ink Machine, reportedly laid off almost 50 employees. While the studio did not make a public announcement stating as such, a Redditor by the name of ProwlerCaboose noticed the employees of the studio sharing the news on social media, some even changing their Twitter bios to state that they are former employees of Kindly Beast.
According to a report by gamesindustry.biz, via their sources, they are “able to confirm that the number of employees affected totaled just under 50, with the company employing over 60 prior to the layoffs.” While the studio did not disclose information about the layoffs on their website or social media, CEO Mike Mood did make a comment to gamesindustry.biz.
We are deeply saddened that Kindly Beast is in the unfortunate position of having to scale down our talented team. Our hearts go out to those who’ve been affected and we’ve provided our former staff members with career transition assistance at this difficult time.
Mood also noted that Snowed In Studios is hosting an open house on October 15, “which can assist in recruiting the available talent.” Even though the studio has now let go of the majority of its staff, Mood reports that the production of all current projects will continue. Kindly Beast is currently working on the sequel to Bendy and the Ink Machine, called Bendy and the Dark Revival. The game was originally expected to release this fall, according to the trailer. It is currently unclear how the layoffs will affect the release schedule of the new game.
After the layoffs, a few job reviews popped up on the site GlassDoor, where potential employees can learn about employers from past employees. One anonymous review, in particular, posted shortly after the layoffs. The former full-time employee had many more cons than pros about working for the studio. The commenter stated that the vast majority of communication to the staff members came from the Board, though they were often silent, leaving staff to work more or less directionless. “I would very much encourage the Board to seriously think twice about hiring again. It is clear that the Board’s vision for how they want to work is incompatible in a company setting,” wrote the commenter.