Daedalic Entertainment exits game development after The Lord of the Rings: Gollum failure

Posted on July 1, 2023

Daedalic Entertainment, developer behind the recently disastrously-released The Lord of the Rings: Gollum, is shutting down its internal game development division to focus on game publishing, sales and marketing, as per an interview with German website Wirtschaft. This shift in priorities unfortunately has meant laying off around 25 employees.

In a statement to Polygon, the company acknowledged that The Lord of the Rings: Gollum “did not live up to the expectations we had for the game” upon release. The company confirms that it will have to lay off some employees, but states that they will “support [their] former employees in finding new opportunities within [their] network. A “follow-up project in The Lord of the Rings universe” that Daedalic was working on, possibly a sequel or spin-off of Gollum, has been cancelled.

Despite The Lord of the Rings: Gollum being essentially dead on arrival, Daedalic recommits to supporting the game for the foreseeable future. This includes the patches that the developers had earlier announced. In addition, a Nintendo Switch port of the game is also in the works.

It’s certainly a shame when companies have to make these kinds of layoffs. That said, it is fortunate that the company has pledged to assist its employees find new roles. The Lord of the Rings: Gollum might have been a big disappointment, but at least Middle-Earth fans have other new games on the horizon. These include an MMO by Amazon Games, the survival-crafting game The Lord of the Rings: Return to Moria by Free Range Games, and a still-mysterious project by Private Division.