This news isn’t that surprising, given that the studio has been in financial turmoil ever since 38 Studios has publicly admitted they can’t pay back what they owe the Rhode Island government.
For reference, Big Huge Games was one of the main catalysts in creating the Amalur universe. The studio was then bought out by 38 Studios back in 2009 and that relationship culminated with the release of Reckoning.
The WPRI got hold of an internal memo circulating within the studio and it reads:
The Company is experiencing an economic downturn. To avoid further losses and possibility of retrenchment, the Company has decided that a companywide lay off is absolutely necessary. These layoffs are non-voluntary and non-disciplinary. This is your official notice of lay off, effective today, Thursday, May 24th, 2012.
It was reported that 38 Studios and Big Huge Games collectively had 379 full-time people on-staff as of March 15.
Needless to say, we’re saddened by this news and wish everyone all the best.