The Winding Path of Wayfinder: A Rollercoaster Ride of Layoffs and Determination | GAME3A
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The Winding Path of Wayfinder: A Rollercoaster Ride of Layoffs and Determination

In a surprising turn of events, Airship Syndicate, the developer behind Wayfinder, has confirmed the layoffs of twelve employees in a bid to keep the ...

Jennifer Jett Jan 31, 2024
The Winding Path of Wayfinder: A Rollercoaster Ride of Layoffs and Determination

In a surprising turn of events, Airship Syndicate, the developer behind Wayfinder, has confirmed the layoffs of twelve employees in a bid to keep the studio afloat. This news, initially reported by Nicole Carpenter of Polygon, comes with an unexpected twist: both the company president, Ryan Stefanelli, and CEO Joe Madureira, are taking pay cuts as well.

An Airship Syndicate representative, in a statement provided to PC Gamer, acknowledged the unfortunate layoffs, stating that the decision was necessary to ensure the studio's continued operation and the delivery of great experiences. Alongside the reduction in staff, both Ryan Stefanelli and Joe Madureira will be taking pay cuts as they work towards securing the studio's future plans.

While the exact extent of the pay cuts remains undisclosed, it's worth noting that it's unusual for studio executives to make such sacrifices during challenging times. Typically, it's the front-line developers who bear the brunt of layoffs while executives remain unscathed. However, there are exceptions to this norm. In 2021, former Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotick took a significant pay cut amidst the company's workplace misconduct scandal, which included his hefty bonuses. An earlier pay cut that year still left him with half of his bonus payout intact.

Wayfinder showed immense promise when we first got a glimpse of its early beta version in 2023. However, the subsequent launch a few months later encountered significant issues, primarily stemming from server troubles that resulted in prolonged wait times for early access players. As a result, the game's user rating on Steam currently stands at a "mixed" level, with only 47% of user reviews being positive. Just under three months after its launch, publisher Digital Extremes decided to pull the plug on its publishing division, returning "full control" of the game back to Airship Syndicate.

Despite the setbacks and layoffs, the Airship Syndicate representative assures us that this is not the end for Wayfinder. They promise that more information about the game's future will be revealed soon, leaving fans eager to see what lies ahead for this ambitious project.

As we navigate the winding path of Wayfinder's development, we can't help but admire the determination of the studio to overcome challenges and continue forging ahead. The layoffs and pay cuts may be a setback, but they are a testament to the team's commitment to keeping the game alive and thriving. It's a rollercoaster ride of emotions, filled with unexpected twists and turns, but the spirit of resilience shines through.

We eagerly await further updates on Wayfinder's future, hoping that the studio's efforts pay off and that players will soon be able to experience the game in all its glory. In the world of game development, setbacks are common, but it's the determination to push forward that separates the successful from the forgotten. Wayfinder still has a chance to find its way and leave a lasting mark on the gaming landscape.