It turns out the gambit on virtual reality development isn’t paying off for CCP. A press release confirms that additional CCP Games VR development is being shut down, with a report stating that a large number of employees have been laid off as a result.
CEO Hilmar Veigar Pétursson has stated in a press release that focus will shift away from additional VR development and back to PC and mobile gaming. “We will continue to support our VR games but will not be making material VR investments until we see market conditions that justify further investments beyond what we have already made,” said Pétursson in a statement.
As a result of the move, approximately 100 employees are being laid off and satellite offices in Newcastle, UK and Atlanta, Georgia are being closed.
As far as EVE: Valkyrie goes, a post on the game’s forums goes into additional details for the game’s future, stating that ownership of the Newcastle studio is being handed over and that the multiplayer first-person spaceship battler “is not going away”.
“The development team at the Newcastle studio will remain intact and complete work on the upcoming Winter Update,” reads the post. “This is not the end of EVE: Valkyrie, not by a long shot. It’s just the beginning of a new chapter.”
We first want to wish those who have been affected by this decision the very best and hope those employees that have been laid off will find new opportunities soon. That said, it would seem that the writing was on the wall with Valkyrie’s decision to drop VR exclusivity. Perhaps someday virtual reality gaming will get a greater foothold, but there seems to be too many roadblocks for that to happen.
CCP Games has made their first-person spaceship battler available to a lot more players with yesterday’s EVE Valkyrie – Warzone launch, bringing the game to those who are not owners of a VR headset or VR-capable system for the first time.
As mentioned previously, EVE Valkyrie – Warzone will feature what is termed “cross-platform cross-reality” multiplayer, granting players on PC and PlayStation 4 the ability to team up and fight against each other as well as those who have the game on VR hardware.
“Breaking down barriers is a big part of what keeps us on the forefront of the gaming industry,” said Hilmar Veigar Pétursson, CEO of CCP Games. “The evolution of EVE Valkyrie to EVE Valkyrie – Warzone brings the thrill of the playing this first-person spaceship shooter to its highest level of inclusiveness.”
The launch has not only brought more players to the fold but has also introduced Extraction, a capture-the-flag style game mode. Warzone’s launch also arrives with two new maps, new weekly Wormhole challenges, and the ability for players to earn Spoils of War, which can be turned in for Loot Capsules stuffed with customization items for player avatars and ships.
EVE Valkyrie – Warzone is priced at $29.99 for those who are jumping in for the first time, while existing owners of the game will see Warzone’s features arrive to them as a free update. Patch notes can be read here and a trailer for the game’s launch can be seen below.
We’re delighted to see EVE Valkyrie expand outside of the admittedly niche VR game space, as many likely can’t afford a machine that can run VR-ready titles or a headset. The broad cross-platform play options should also mean that things in the space of EVE Valkyrie could become very busy in very short order.