Staff at John Romero's massively multiplayer online developer Slipgate Ironworks have been made redundant, as owners Gazillion "change the format" of the studio's project.
Although development of Slipgate's first game continues, blog site Kotaku reports that around 50 staff were let go at the end of last week.
Studio founder John Romero, known for his work at Doom creator id Software and later Ion Storm and Midway, commented on Twitter: "Our studio layoff was a difficult time and we all wish our departing friends good luck in their careers. We had an amazing team."
Parent company Gazillion, which also owns the likes of NetDevil, Gargantuan and The Amazing Society, has confirmed that some staff have been offered alternative positions within its network of studios.
"Gazillion has enjoyed remarkable growth over the past year and is proud to be partners with revered, world-class brands," said the company in a statement.
"We have expanded our number of studios from one to four and our MMO portfolio from two games to a slate of titles. As part of our focus on reaching the widest possible audiences with breakthrough MMO entertainment, we decided to change the format of our project at Slipgate Ironworks to better achieve this aim."
"The game we'll launch will build on the efforts to date with a smaller core team and the other Slipgate staff are already in discussions around the many open positions across our slate of projects."
The nature of Slipgate's first title has never been revealed, although it is believed to be an original IP and not related to any of Gazillion's licensed deals with known brands such as Marvel Entertainment and Lego.