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Elex developer Piranha Bytes reportedly in danger of shutting down

Despite the threat of closing down, Piranha Bytes says it's confident it'll go on and find a new partner to work with.

Justin Carter

January 22, 2024

1 Min Read
Key art for Piranha Bytes' Elex II.
Image via Piranha Bytes/THQ Nordic.

At a Glance

  • If Embracer can't find a new publishing partner or owner for Piranha Bytes, the German dev will shut down entirely.

German outlets have reported that Piranha Bytes is at risk of closing its doors for good.

Like with Free Radical last year, parent company Embracer is looking to find the German studio a new owner. If one can't be found, the staff will be laid off in full.

Founded in 1997, Piranha Bytes was originally owned by Phenomedia until 2002. Management then bought out the studio and its properties, and was self-owned until THQ Nordic acquired it in 2019.

The studio is responsible for the Gothic, Risen, and Elex franchises. Its most recent game was 2022's Elex II, and the original Gothic is being remade by Alkima Interactive.

On Twitter, Piranha Bytes confirmed it was in a "difficult situation," but the future wasn't written in stone. Of finding a new owner, it said it was "convinced we will succeed."

"We are focusing on this goal with all our strength, and will do whatever it takes to find a partner for this [new] project."

Game Developer reached out to Piranha Bytes for comment, and will update this story when a response is given.

About the Author(s)

Justin Carter

Contributing Editor, GameDeveloper.com

A Kansas City, MO native, Justin Carter has written for numerous sites including IGN, Polygon, and SyFy Wire. In addition to Game Developer, his writing can be found at io9 over on Gizmodo. Don't ask him about how much gum he's had, because the answer will be more than he's willing to admit.

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