UK-based Blitz Games Studios to close after 23 years

Staff reportedly honoured the company with a round of applause even after they were told they'd lost their jobs

Videogame companies across the UK are looking to employ up to 125 developers affected by the closure of Blitz Games Studios

The independent games developer based in Leamington Spa announced it was closing yesterday when it was put into liquidation after 23 years.

Although the move put 175 people at risk, 50 former employers are being hired by a new company created by Blitz founders Philip and Andrew Oliver.

Philip Oliver has also invited other companies to email him and it is understood that development studios Rebellion, Mind Candy, Natural Motion, Rocksteady and Splash Damage are interested in speaking to ex-staff about possible vacancies.

Blitz Game Studios issued a statement saying existing management had sought fresh investment, having also tried to tie up new contracts but that it was unable to secure enough funds to sustain the business.

It went on to say that two of the current projects being worked on by Blitz staff were self-financing and these are being worked on by the Olivers' new company.

CEO Philip Oliver said: “We have managed to weather numerous storms over the last two decades that have sadly seen the demise of many of our friends and colleagues across the industry, but the run of problems we've had to face over the last year is unlike any we've seen before.

“Frustrations with clients, the global economic crisis, and more than our fair share of simple bad luck have all conspired against us and we are no longer able to continue trading.

It has been an absolute honour to lead such an extraordinary group of highly talented people who have consistently pushed boundaries and created amazing games that we've been hugely proud of. We've been humbled by the loyalty and commitment that they've all shown over the last 23 years and we would like to express our heartfelt thanks to all of our staff, past and present, for their years of loyalty, their creative drive and their commitment to Blitz and to us.”

He said the company had come close to generating fresh funds but that major clients had felt unable to commit.

Philip and Andrew Oliver have been involved in the games industry since 1983 when they had their first work published as a programming “type-in” in a magazine. They were paid £50.

They went on to create the very popular Dizzy series of games, working for Codemasters which is also based in Leamington Spa.

In 1990, they formed Blitz Game Studios and created a large number of games with a growing number of staff. They included the 3D game Invincible Tiger: The Legend of Han Tao, Droplitz, Biggest Loser, Pac-Man World, SpongeBob SquarePants and iCarly.

Philip Oliver recently began an initiative called Made in Creative UK which aims to promote games that are produced in the United Kingdom.

It appears the Olivers were popular people to work for. Company insiders say staff gave them a round of applause following their job loss announcement, something the administrator was believed to have said he had never seen happen before.

Blitz made their name programming the popular Dizzy series of games.

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Gadgets & Tech

    Recruitment Genius: IT Infrastructure Engineer

    £30000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Our client is looking to find a...

    Recruitment Genius: IT Engineer

    £21000 - £23600 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An exciting opportunity to join...

    Ashdown Group: IT Support Analyst - Liverpool - up to £28,000

    £22000 - £28000 per annum: Ashdown Group: This is a large multi-site operation...

    Recruitment Genius: Salesforce Developer

    £50000 - £65000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Due to continued business growt...

    Day In a Page

    The saffron censorship that governs India: Why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression

    The saffron censorship that governs India

    Zareer Masani reveals why national pride and religious sentiment trump freedom of expression
    Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

    Prince Charles' 'black spider' letters to be published 'within weeks'

    Supreme Court rules Dominic Grieve's ministerial veto was invalid
    Distressed Zayn Malik fans are cutting themselves - how did fandom get so dark?

    How did fandom get so dark?

    Grief over Zayn Malik's exit from One Direction seemed amusing until stories of mass 'cutting' emerged. Experts tell Gillian Orr the distress is real, and the girls need support
    The galaxy collisions that shed light on unseen parallel Universe

    The cosmic collisions that have shed light on unseen parallel Universe

    Dark matter study gives scientists insight into mystery of space
    The Swedes are adding a gender-neutral pronoun to their dictionary

    Swedes introduce gender-neutral pronoun

    Why, asks Simon Usborne, must English still struggle awkwardly with the likes of 's/he' and 'they'?
    Disney's mega money-making formula: 'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan

    Disney's mega money-making formula

    'Human' remakes of cartoon classics are part of a lucrative, long-term creative plan
    Lobster has gone mainstream with supermarket bargains for £10 or less - but is it any good?

    Lobster has gone mainstream

    Anthea Gerrie, raised on meaty specimens from the waters around Maine, reveals how to cook up an affordable feast
    Easter 2015: 14 best decorations

    14 best Easter decorations

    Get into the Easter spirit with our pick of accessories, ornaments and tableware
    Paul Scholes column: Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season

    Paul Scholes column

    Gareth Bale would be a perfect fit at Manchester United and could turn them into serious title contenders next season
    Inside the Kansas greenhouses where Monsanto is 'playing God' with the future of the planet

    The future of GM

    The greenhouses where Monsanto 'plays God' with the future of the planet
    Britain's mild winters could be numbered: why global warming is leaving UK chillier

    Britain's mild winters could be numbered

    Gulf Stream is slowing down faster than ever, scientists say
    Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

    Government gives £250,000 to Independent appeal

    Donation brings total raised by Homeless Veterans campaign to at least £1.25m
    Oh dear, the most borrowed book at Bank of England library doesn't inspire confidence

    The most borrowed book at Bank of England library? Oh dear

    The book's fifth edition is used for Edexcel exams
    Cowslips vs honeysuckle: The hunt for the UK’s favourite wildflower

    Cowslips vs honeysuckle

    It's the hunt for UK’s favourite wildflower
    Child abuse scandal: Did a botched blackmail attempt by South African intelligence help Cyril Smith escape justice?

    Did a botched blackmail attempt help Cyril Smith escape justice?

    A fresh twist reveals the Liberal MP was targeted by the notorious South African intelligence agency Boss