EA Maxis Emeryville, the venerable studio responsible for games like The Sims, Spore and SimCity, has been quietly shut down this week.
The news was brought to Gamasutra's attention by SimCity designer Guillaume Pierre, who posted on Twitter that "everyone's out of a job" in the wake of the studio's closure.
Studio general manager Patrick Buechner later took to Twitter to confirm the news, and EA Maxis went on to send a statement to Kotaku that "we are consolidating Maxis IP development to our studios in Redwood Shores, Salt Lake City, Helsinki and Melbourne locations as we close our Emeryville location."
The company goes on to claim that the closure will not affect ongoing development of The Sims, and that all staff affected by the shutdown will be encouraged to "explore other positions" at EA, and given separation packages if they aren't rehired.
As always, if you or someone you know If you was affected by this untimely event you can email Gamasutra to tell your story confidentially.