The day that many longtime fans of Criterion Games, best known for the Burnout series, and who helped to salvage the mess that was the Need For Speed franchise, has finally arrived. And the sad thing is, many saw it coming, all the way back in 2004, when EA first acquired the studio.
Joystiq, along with several other outlets, have reported the recent restructuring of the UK based developer. What used to be a studio that had around 80 individuals now has only 16, according to Criterion creative director Alex Ward on Twitter.
Between 60 to 65 now former Criterion employees have been sent to Ghost Games, another EA owned studio that operates out of Sweden, to help work on the upcoming Need for Speed: Rivals. Ward also seems to note that reshuffling isn't temporary; once Rivals is finished, said former Criterion hands are expected to remain at Ghost.
There had been reports that Criterion was looking to do something else other another racing game, and already there's a decent amount of speculation (more like conspiracy theories) that EA was not too happy with such an idea, and thus made the decisions that they did.