Grand Theft Auto
developer Rockstar Games announced some major changes to its Canadian game studios: Namely, that it's dissolved Rockstar Vancouver, one of the major contributing studios behind Max Payne 3
, to refocus its efforts on another Canadian studio, Rockstar Toronto.
After numerous delays and several alleged development hiccups, Rockstar Games released Max Payne 3
in May, and while the game received positive reviews
and saw a strong launch at retail
, it looks like it'll be the last title for the Vancouver team.
Despite closing down the Vancouver branch, Rockstar said it hopes to retain the 35 employees at the studio, and has offered the staff positions at Rockstar Toronto, which is relocating to a new, larger office in Oakville, Ontario. Rockstar said that it also plans to add 50 new positions to its Canadian team in the months ahead.
That said, Rockstar Toronto hasn't been the lead developer on an original game in quite some time. The studio played a major role in creating the 2005 action title The Warriors
, but ever since the studio has primarily offered support for other Rockstar divisions. Rockstar did not clarify whether the studio's role will change after these major shakeups.
Outside of Max Payne 3
, the only other major Rockstar title to come from Rockstar Vancouver was the 2006 PlayStation 2 title Bully
(which later came to Xbox 360, PC, and Wii). Prior to that, the studio was known as Barking Dog, and developed titles like Homeworld: Cataclysm
and Global Operations
before it was acquired by Rockstar in 2002.