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Dundee's Cohort Studios shutting down

25 staff to lose jobs as ambitious Scots developer folds

All twenty five staff at Dundee's Cohort Studios are to lose their jobs after the company announced that it would be closing down after the release of its next project.

CEO Lol Scragg announced that the studio was struggling to survive making console content in a "declining console environment."

"It really is with great sadness that we have been left with no alternative but to start winding down," said Scragg. "Making all 25 employees redundant is genuinely heartbreaking.

"As we entered 2011, we have looked to change the direction of our business but unfortunately we ran out of time."

Founded in 2006, Cohort spent time working on external work for games such as Buzz, Motorstorm and, most recently, The Shoot for Sony's Move. The team had recently built its own bespoke engine, known as Praetorian, which it planned to use to create and publish new IP.

Two new games were in the works at Cohort, but only one of those, PlayStation Mini title Me Monstar: Hear Me Roar, will now see light of day.

Latest comments (27)

Nick Burcombe CEO & Co Founder, Playrise Digital Ltd.5 years ago
Really sorry to hear this. Best of luck guys.
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Joe Anderson Editor, Shopto.net5 years ago
Shame :(
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Bruce McNeish Senior Programmer, 4J Studios5 years ago
Cheers Nick,

Was one of the hardest decisions I have ever had to be a part of. At the end of the day; our number one priority was to ensure that we wound the company down correctly and fairly without going into administration. That way we could ensure that *everybody* got *everything* they were due. We were never going to run right to the wire and end up having to lock the doors on the staff, they are a great bunch of developers who deserve much better than that.

Utterly heart breaking, I'm very sad.

Bruce
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Show all comments (27)
Really sorry to hear that guys. You are doing one of the hardest things to do - trying to do right by everyone when your heart is broken. Good luck to all of you in the future.
Mark
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Fran Mulhern , Recruit3D5 years ago
Ouch. All the best chaps.
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Nick McCrea Gentleman, Pocket Starship5 years ago
@Bruce

The right decision, no doubt informed by the implosion of RTW. The abrupt failure of RTW placed a lot of people in very difficult positions financially. Doing things the right way ensures that people have a bit of time to find something new, and when the time comes to bounce back people will remember that Cohort's management closed the company in an honourable and responsible way.

Best luck to all.
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Tim Wright Managing Director, Tantrumedia Limited5 years ago
ARSE. Another Really Sad Ending. :O(
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Another Dundee studio :( So sad to hear this. Best of luck to you guys, you'll be missed.

*edit*


@bruce,

Considering some of the horror stories, lawsuits, debatable "back stabbing" and many other things going on in the industry right now, What Nick said was absolutely spot on.

"people will remember that Cohort's management closed the company in an honourable and responsible way."

Couldn't agree more.

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Khaled Al-Hurby on 21st April 2011 4:20pm

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Sebastian Moss Editor -in- Chief, PlayStation LifeStyle5 years ago
Absolutely awful news, I really enjoyed The Shoot and its just terrible that it wasn't enough to prevent the closure. Best of luck to all involved.

@Bruce: I really do not envy your decision, but its definitely good that you didn't just keep on going until the end, this way hopefully staff will have the finances to keep tied over until they can find another job.
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Daniel Vardy Studying HND IT, De Montfort University5 years ago
not the best of news, however i am sure you guys are able to show off your skills working with other development teams. good luck.
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Simon Barratt Director, Four Door Lemon Ltd5 years ago
Very sorry to hear guys and kudos to all involved in the management decisions to close as they did.

All the best for the future.

Simon
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Bruce McNeish Senior Programmer, 4J Studios5 years ago
Thanks everyone for you support.

On a brighter note; the "Gallows Humour" has been building over the last day or so which has just culminated in us getting a call from the BBC to confirm whether Lol was a man or a woman ... he didn't think it was that funny, the rest of us sure did :)
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Fran Mulhern , Recruit3D5 years ago
Lol.

(ha)
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Sad to hear. Hope you all have plenty of luck in your next venture.
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Stuart Hunt Senior Programmer, Slightly Mad Studios5 years ago
A real shame, best of luck to you all. It's a real credit to you guys for shutting down gracefully though, that's a rare thing to see these days!

LOL@Lol though, did they name-check Scragg to make sure that was real too? ;)
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Dalyan Derby 3D Modeling 5 years ago
its a sad day for them al, its not nice to hear but i guess thats buissnes for you. i hope thay all do well for them self
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Private VIdeo Games 5 years ago
I'm sad for all of them.. Good luck to everyone.

Lol is a top quality guy, i'm sure it breaks his heart.

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Very sad news, I really felt for Lol. A really nice bloke with a good sense of humour and outlook. Pity we could not work together. Maybe sometime in the future.
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Lol Scragg Co-Founder & Director, Binary Pumpkin5 years ago
for the record, Lol is my real name (and the reason I got my first job in the industry - buy me a beer and I'll tell you the story) and yes Mr BBC, I am a damn man.


thanks for the kind comments. I have been heartened by the kinds words received by many means these past 24 hours and I know it means a lot to the other Directors also. The games industry can be an evil mistress, but when it goes well we all know it can be fantastic. We are a close knit community and the messages of support have been overwhelming.

We are hopeful that every one of our talented staff will find a suitably good position immediately - that is our main priority.
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Adam Ross5 years ago
Take care in where ever you all end up
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Corinne Cadalin Game designer, Communication Manager 5 years ago
Very sorry for how it turned out, remember though that in the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.
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Bruce McNeish Senior Programmer, 4J Studios5 years ago
Can I add my personal thanks for all of those people out there who have forwarded details of potential positions for our staff members, it is much appreciated.

Thank you.
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Ross Gough Studying Computer Games Applications Development, University of Abertay Dundee5 years ago
More terrible news. Really sorry to hear about this and my heart goes out to all employees :(
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Chris Thorne Sound designer/Musician 5 years ago
Very sorry to hear your news Lol and Bruce. Best of luck to all affected - fwiw some of the most talented and nice guys I have had the pleasure of working with. Fingers crossed for you, Chris
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Sean Noonan Lead Level Designer, Ruffian Games5 years ago
Sorry to hear it.
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Joe Taylor Engineer, Ruffian Games5 years ago
I spent my first year in the industry at Cohort. They were a great company and I owe them for the experience and opportunity. It is a massive shame to hear this news, especially after the redundancies they had to make last year (then over-shadowed by the demise of RTW). I guess we were all rooting for a come-back.

Best of luck to all the remaining employees and for the release of Me Monstar. Maybe Cohort will rise again from the ashes?
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Lewis Brown Snr Sourcer/Recruiter, Electronic Arts5 years ago
Good Luck to all who are looking...
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