The Rodeo Games death reports got a bit more interesting today, with the co-founder and creative director, Ben Murch insisting the studio isn’t dead yet. Backing up a bit, this whole thing all started last week when an ex-Rodeo Games developer posted in our forums about how the majority of the Rodeo Games team left months ago, and as far as he knows there wasn’t anyone left to make content or support the game. From the outside, this made total sense as Warhammer 40K – Deathwatch ($1.99) seemed to be left to die on the vine as members of our forums reported total radio silence on incoming bug fixes, content updates, and more.
What made the whole thing weirder is that we got notification of an update which was embargoed for August 18th of last year that the multiplayer expansion was coming to Deathwatch. It never materialized though, and a few months later Rodeo Games posted in our forums that iOS 9’s Game Center killed their iOS multiplayer (which still hasn’t been released). In December they clarified that there was “Literally nothing we can do." Like anything, there’s always two sides to a story.
As mentioned, we received this from Ben Murch today:
Due to inaccurate reports in the press over the last few days and the questions we’ve received regards the future of Rodeo we thought it was best we update everyone to let you know what’s been happening.
As reported some of the team left the studio back in November, after we’d shipped the iOS and PC versions of Deathwatch. Since then the core team have been working on new platforms for Deathwatch, one of which we’ll be announcing shortly!
Despite Deathwatch being the best game we’ve created as a studio and our highest rated metacritic game, the changes in market have meant that we are unable to continue development as we’d initially planned. Coupled with some personal issues within the team, Rodeo Games are currently taking a break from developing any new titles. The team will continue to support our existing titles.
We’d like to thank all our fans, especially those who have followed us since the beginning. We’d also like to say a huge thank you to the Games Workshop team who were kind enough to trust us with their IP and have supported us hugely over the last few years. Without them, we wouldn’t have enjoyed the commercial and critical success of the last 3 years.
We’ll announce our plans for future releases at the appropriate time. We intend to carry on making the games we love, for the people who love them.
I guess it’s open for interpretation whether “dead" and “taking a break from developing any new titles" are the same thing after most of the team leaves are the same thing when games have gone unsupported for months. Either way, I genuinely hope things turn around for Rodeo Games, as we’ve mentioned time and time again: The games they’ve released are fantastic. But, right now, the whole thing sort of feels like this: