Sony confirmed this morning that it has closed SCE Studio Liverpool, previously called Psygnosis and best known for the Wipeout series, in a bid to better focus its video game plans.
Psygnosis was originally founded in 1984, publishing DMA Design's Lemmings, before being acquired by Sony in 1993 and releasing the first in its Wipeout futuristic racing series.
In 2001, it was renamed to Studio Liverpool, where it went on to develop multiple titles in both the Wipeout and Formula One racing franchises.
In a statement today, Sony explained, "As part of SCE Worldwide Studios, we do regular reviews to ensure that the resources we have can create and produce high quality, innovative and commercially viable projects in an increasingly competitive market place."
It continued, "As part of this process, we have reviewed and assessed all current and planned projects for the short and medium term and have decided to make some changes to our European Studios."
"It has been decided that Liverpool Studio should be closed. Liverpool Studio has been an important part of SCE Worldwide Studios since the outset of PlayStation, and have contributed greatly to PlayStation over the years. Everyone connected with Liverpool Studio, past and present, can be very proud of their achievements."
The company noted that it is looking to focus its investment plans on other SCE studios that are working on new projects. The Liverpool facility where Studio Liverpool was based will still accommodate other Sony departments, the statement said.
[Update: Sony has clarified to Gamasutra, "The only area that is being closed is the WWSE Team Liverpool. Our Liverpool campus will still house: FQA, GFPQA, XDev, CSG-Video, Localisation services, WWSE Finance etc. In other words, we're not closing the entire studio."]