France-based publisher Ubisoft confirmed that it is "working on a small reorganization" at wholly-owned studio Reflections, which has been working on the recently-delayed Driver: San Francisco
"There was a meeting to propose reorganizations to the team that may result in redundancies of up to a dozen studio members," a Ubisoft rep told Europe-based Develop
"This is a proposal for reorganization, and it isn't the people who are made redundant, but the jobs themselves," she added. "The people get to have their say about the reorganization." She said about seven of Driver: San Francisco
's contracted workers will not have their contracts renewed.
An anonymous source expressed to Develop anxiety that layoffs will ensue once the game is completed. It's Reflections' first game for current generation consoles.
The report comes after Ubisoft delayed Driver: San Francisco
into fiscal 2012, which ends in March 2012. Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot said that the company wants to make sure that the game's quality is up to par in light of competition in the driving category.
Recent releases in the genre include the well-reviewed Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit
from Electronic Arts and Criterion, and Sony and Polyphony Digital's racing juggernaut Gran Turismo 5
Ubisoft acquired UK-based Reflections and the Driver
IP from Atari in 2006 for €19 million ($24.9 million). The Driver
series debuted in 1999 on PlayStation, and the series overall had sold 14 million units at the time of Reflections' acquisition by Ubisoft. The purchase of the studio was Ubisoft's bid to gain a greater foothold in the racing genre.
The Ubisoft rep added, "The brand is very important to us, and Reflections is crucial as a studio. They have an expertise that none of our other studios have. It will absolutely keep going after Driver