It’s no secret that The Lord of the Rings Gollum didn’t release to a strong critical reception. The stealth game fell short of expectations across its design, gameplay, and story, leading to a mass of negative feedback soon after its release. While The Lord of the Rings Gollum did disappoint, a development studio shutting down is never good news and it unfortunately seems that Daedalic Entertainment is closing its dev department for good.
As detailed in our The Lord of the Rings Gollum review, Daedalic’s most recent game, which was also its most expensive, did not deliver. An official apology was issued by the developer soon after its release, but it seems that the strain caused by Gollum’s launch along with other factors proved too much to overcome for Daedalic, with the studio now shifting its focus to publishing and marketing instead.
Its published titles, such as Barotrauma and Unrailed, have generally been more well-received. Daedalic is calling its end to the development department “a new beginning in the long history of Daedalic Entertainment.” In a German report about the department closing down, Daedalic was said to have confirmed that 25 of its employees would be affected by the shutdown. The employees will not be fired, however, but rather transferred to different work.
Management stated that they “value each and every member of our team and it is important to us that the transition goes as smoothly as possible,” prompting them to “support our former employees in finding new opportunities within our network.” Daedalic is also ceasing its work on another Lord of the Rings game it had been developing since 2022. Gollum will continue to receive patches as necessary, with one “currently being worked on.”