Toys for Bob going indie after 19 years under Activision, might continue to work with Microsoft

Microsoft will let go Toys for Bob, one of the many studios it acquired in the record-breaking Activision Blizzard deal. The team, known for series like Star Control and Skylanders, will become independent again.

Toys for Bob becomes independent again after 19 years under Activision

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  • Toys for Bob bosses Paul Yan and Avery Lodato made a joint announcement on the studio’s official website, saying that the company is “spinning off as an independent game development studio.”
  •  “With the same enthusiasm and passion, we believe that now is the time to take the studio and our future games to the next level,” the statement reads. “This opportunity allows us to return to our roots of being a small and nimble studio.”
  • The terms of an agreement under which Toys for Bob was given a chance to go independent remain undisclosed.
  • Despite the news, the studio plans to continue working closely with both Activision and Microsoft. It is now exploring a “possible partnership between our new studio and Microsoft,” while also working on its next game (in the early stages of development).

Founded in 1989, Toys for Bob first gained recognition for its Star Control series and licensed games based on popular IPs. In 2005, Activision acquired the studio, which went on to create the successful Skylanders franchise.

Toys for Bob also made remasters of the classic Spyro and Crash Bandicoot titles, as well as Crash Bandicoot 4. In 2021, it became another support studio for Call of Duty, working on various content for Warzone and Modern Warfare II-III.

Last year, Toys for Bob joined Microsoft after the completion of the Activision Blizzard acquisition, along with developers such as Blizzard, King, Infinity Ward, High Moon Studios and Treyarch. Soon after the merger, Microsoft announced its decision to lay off 1,900 employees in its gaming division.

According to a WARN notice filed earlier this month, Toys for Bob was expected to eliminate 86 roles on March 30 and close its office in California. However, it is unclear whether the job cuts will be made following the newfound independence.

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