Some rather disconcerting news from Arkedo Studio, the developer behind Hell Yeah! Wrath of the Dead Rabbit, as creative director Aurelien Regard announced operations will cease once two unannounced games are released. It's not bankruptcy or anything, just there won't be any more games produced once the two new ones are out.
Arkedo, the company, is still here. But no one’s employed anymore. No more games are produced either. That’s the subtlety of the situation: Arkedo hasn’t closed down and is not bankrupt, going into administration or whatever big word, as it is managed properly. It is interesting for the structure to still be here as after HellYeah!, we’ve made two small games which are finished but you’re not aware of them yet. We hope to release them soon and it should be fine on this side.
Regard explains there are three main reasons why Arkedo is ceasing game development: money, post Hell Yeah! time, and different ideas between the two co-founders. All three are meant to be viewed together and not separately, especially the first two. Once Hell Yeah! was released, there wasn't any big project on the horizon to secure more funding. Two smaller games were self-funded by Arkedo, and before the money completely ran out the decision was made to let everyone go.
Those smaller games also don't quite fit in with a company the size Arkedo had grown to over the last seven years. Bigger company means less risks can be taken, and it wasn't what the team at Arkedo wanted to do. In the words of Regard: "Right now, it is better to be small in order to take risks."
Lastly, Regard and fellow founder Camille Guermonprez had different ideas on what they should do. Regard wanted to make his own small studio to create games, while Guermonprez wanted to get into the publishing world. It wasn't fair to everyone at Arkedo for the two to be pulling in opposite directions, and since the economy still isn't too great to take chances, the studio is ceasing operation.
It's sad to see Arkedo Studio go away, but Regard says it's more of a "See ya" and not "Farewell." There's still the two unannounced games on the way, which should be out soon, and the former employees should find their way to other studios in time.