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According to the report, Star Theory’s development staff each received an unsolicited LinkedIn message last December, in which a Take-Two producer revealed it was setting up a new studio to keep working on the game Star Theory had been developing.
The message reportedly said Take-Two was looking to hire all of Star Theory’s staff in order to make the transition happen smoothly.
“This was an incredibly difficult decision for us to make, but it became necessary when we felt business circumstances might compromise the development, execution and integrity of the game,” Take-Two executive Michael Cook reportedly wrote in the message. “To that end, we encourage you to apply for a position with us.”
Star Theory founders Bob Berry and Jonathan reportedly told staff the next week that they had been in discussions about selling their company to Take-Two but were dissatisfied with the terms.
Despite reportedly encouraging their employees to stay at the company in an attempt to secure a new project, more than half of KSP2’s development team are claimed to have eventually joined Take-Two’s new studio Intercept Games.
By March, as the coronavirus pandemic disrupted much of the global economy, Star Theory had closed, Bloomberg reports.
Brian Roundy, a spokesman for Take-Two’s Private Division publishing label, told the publication: “More than half of the team is now at Intercept Games. In doing so, we are empowering our deeply passionate and talented team to focus on quality, and we are thrilled with the progress that they are making on the game.”
Star Theory began work on KSP2 in 2017, after Take-Two purchased the rights to the popular flight sim game from another independent studio, Squad.
Private Division recently delayed the Kerbal Space Program 2 release date to fall 2021.