Black Rock Studio is a well established developer of racing games; all of the studios’ eight titles are racing games, and Black Rock has developed games such as Split/Second and Pure. Back in 2006, the company was acquired by Disney Interactive Studios, which was known as Buena Vista Games at the time. Despite good reviews for their last two games, Disney is closing the company.
An anonymous source told Eurogamer that Disney “handled Black Rock clumsily, outsourcing games to other companies that the Brighton studio was more than capable of producing.” Disney also released an official statement about their decision to close the studio.
Disney Interactive Studios confirms that Black Rock Studios’ current project has not been greenlit for further development, consequently the company informed employees yesterday of the intent to enter a consultation process on the proposal to close the studios
Back in May, two of Black Rock’s employees left the company and formed Roundcube Entertainment. Ian Monaghan, a former senior producer and Nick Baynes, Split/Second’s director, formed the company after they were laid off by Disney. Two weeks later, game director, Andrew Hubbard; technical director, Kim Burrows; technical art director, Stuart Pharoah; and creative and art director, Steve Uphill, founded ShortRound Games. Finally, BossAlien was founded by Pure director, Jason Avent. So although Black Rock may be closed, there are three new development studios for fans of Split/Second and Pure to keep their eyes on.