In a shocking turn of events, Versus Evil, the esteemed publisher behind acclaimed titles like The Banner Saga and Pillars Of Eternity 2, has been closed down, leaving its entire staff unemployed. This grim announcement comes shortly after the company was acquired by tinyBuild in November 2021. Francis Fincke, the former director of product strategy at Versus Evil, took to LinkedIn to express his sorrow, revealing that the entire 13-person company had been laid off right before the start of the Christmas break. The official Versus Evil account on X confirmed the heartbreaking news, adding a heartfelt message of gratitude for their loyal community.

Versus Evil, initially established in 2013 as an indie game publisher, had played a pivotal role in bringing several indie gems to the gaming world. With titles like Tower Of Guns, Amikrog, and Faeria under their belt, their catalog showcased their commitment to quality and creativity. Their closure not only robs the gaming community of a passionate and dedicated publisher but also cuts short the promising future projects they might have brought to life.

The recent departure of Steve Escalante, the founder of Versus Evil, in addition to the company’s unfortunate demise, shines a light on the internal turmoil that may have contributed to this heartbreaking outcome. Escalante’s departure was accompanied by ongoing litigation against tinyBuild, the company that acquired Versus Evil. Escalante alleged that tinyBuild had failed to uphold their obligations as outlined in their agreement. Fortunately, the litigation was eventually settled, but not without a significant financial cost. tinyBuild agreed to pay the claimants a staggering $3.5 million in addition to covering the legal expenses.

The closure of Versus Evil and the preceding shutdown of Hakjak Studio, developers of the highly anticipated Pigeon Simulator, exposes a broader trend of layoffs within the gaming industry. Unfortunately, the tumultuous year of 2023 has witnessed an estimated 10,000 job cuts across various sectors of the video game industry, according to the tracking website This disheartening statistic underscores the challenges that developers, publishers, and studios continue to face in this ever-evolving industry.

While the closure of Versus Evil marks the end of an era, it is crucial that we take a moment to acknowledge their significant contributions to the gaming landscape. Versus Evil demonstrated a deep appreciation for the indie game community by consistently delivering memorable experiences. Their heartfelt message of gratitude to their loyal followers is a testament to their passion and dedication. Though it is undeniably a sad day for the gaming industry, the legacy of Versus Evil will remain etched in the minds of gamers and developers alike.

The closure of Versus Evil serves as a somber reminder of the challenges and uncertainties inherent in the gaming industry. It is essential for all stakeholders to come together and support one another to ensure the continued growth and success of this beloved form of entertainment.


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