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Surgeon Simulator developer lays off one-third of staff

Bossa Studios, developer of Surgeon Simulator, has laid off one-third of its staff due to increasing operational costs and lack of funding.

Image of doctor and nurses conducting surgery on a man on a stretcher in medical room.

Following a rough year of games industry cuts, UK developer Bossa Studios is, unfortunately, next to go through the wringer. Known for developing Surgeon Simulator, the studio has laid off one-third of its staff, which affects mostly its QA and production teams.

GamesIndustry.biz learned of the news from Bossa Studios co-founder Henrique Olifiers, who stated the layoffs at the Surgeon Simulator 2 creator were due to a “perfect storm of events,” blaming the launch of AAA games after September stealing the spotlight from AA and indie games, increasing operational costs, and delayed funding decisions for newer titles were the culprits. These factors created a “difficult situation” for the simulator game maker and led management to lay off 19 developers at the end of 2023. 

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“We had to make the difficult decision to reshape the studio to reflect the position we find ourselves in at the end of [2023], focusing all our efforts now on Lost Skies,” Olifiers said to GamesIndustry.biz, adding, “This means we find ourselves in the heartbreaking position of having to let roughly one-third of the studio go – amongst them, some of our closest colleagues.”

As of this writing, only 40 developers remain at the studio. Olifiers stated the company is doing everything possible to support those laid off and is spreading the word to help them get hired elsewhere across the industry.

“We often say that making games is hard, but nothing is harder than seeing people you admire being let go,” said Olifiers. “Ultimately, we tried our very best to avoid being in this position, and we’re truly sorry for where we have landed.”

All resources and workers are pouring into the upcoming Lost Skies following this news. It’s unclear exactly what impact the layoffs might have had on the game’s development timeline, but Bossa Studios is still pushing forward despite shaving off one-third of its team.

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