Company president Michael Scandizzo has confirmed to online sources that developer Castaway Entertainment (Djinn, Yaris
) has been forced to suspend its operations following a failure to sign new projects with publishers, with the studio facing complete closure in a matter of weeks.
Castaway was formed in the summer of 2003 by several members of the Blizzard North team responsible for the best selling Diablo
franchise. These were later joined by veterans of the Might & Magic
role-playing series and Maxis’ The Sims
Despite signing a worldwide publishing agreement
with Electronic Arts in 2004, Castaway has never managed to release a full game, as work continued on the Diablo
inspired action role-player Djinn
. The studio was, however, co-developer of Xbox Live Arcade title Yaris
, with Backbone Entertainment.
Speaking to consumer website GameSpot, Scandizzo explained
that negotiations with publishers on two separate projects had both fallen through. "If somebody came in tomorrow and said, 'Here's a whole bunch of money. Can you get back up and running,' then Monday we could be back up and running," said Scandizzo.
"But a couple of weeks from now, as we slowly wind down, there will be a point by which we will not be able to get back up and running," he admitted.
According to GameSpot, the studio has had to cut its staff from around twenty-five to just six key members, with all development work currently on hold. ”If anyone wanted to come in and save us, we'd give the whole kitchen sink to them on the extremely cheap," commented Scandizzo. "Otherwise after almost 10 years of this group working together, we're going to have to dissolve."