38 Studios is OUT ... of Massachusetts. Curt Schilling's studio, which just announced its first
project, Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning
, at Comic-Con last week, is moving from Maynard, Massachusetts to Rhode Island. The state will be giving the development house $75 million in loan guarantees
. According to The Boston Globe
, the studio is obligated to bring 450 direct jobs to Rhode Island by the end of 2012 or face penalties.
Massachusetts is home to several high-profile game developers now, including Harmonix
. Demiurge Studios
, which will become the state's largest independent studio once 38 leaves, had the most immediate reaction to the news, sending out an open letter
to Curt Schilling. Studio CEO William D. Reed, who was the former director of the greater Boston region for the Massachusetts Office of Business Development wrote, "I can assure you more industry professionals than ever call this great state home. A large number of game-focused graduates and brilliant thinkers come from our local colleges and universities, supplying the talent to meet our industry's growing demand. Our businesses are truly fortunate to grow in such a thriving community." The letter concludes that if "anyone on the talented 38 Studios team" wants to stay in Mass., they're welcome to join Demiurge.
Keith Stokes, the executive director of the Rhode Island Economic Development Corp., informed the Globe that the state will provide 38 Studios the $75 million in bonds while it adds jobs and meets predetermined milestones. If 38 Studios goes under, RI taxpayers will be left holding the bag.