Cheyenne Mountain Entertainment, the new studio getting ready to release the massively multi-player video game Stargate Worlds next year, is having trouble making ends meet.
The company has apparently missed at least one payroll, spawning the aptly named Web site Days-Since-Cheyenne-Mountain-Employees-Have-Been-Paid.com. It would seem that an employee wants Stargate fans and gamers to know just what is going on.
The clock currently stands at 25 days, though just how many missed paychecks this actually represents is not known. We do know that the studio has laid off several staffers in the past year to cut costs.
Stargate Worlds will be the young studio’s first title, and CME is banking on the game to put them on the map. It has been a long time in development — over three years — with no revenue coming in from the game.
Instead, like most start-ups, the company has relied on investors to keep it afloat long enough to get its product to market, and begin recouping its long development costs — and turning a profit.
The studio offered this response (via Ten Ton Hammer):
- At Cheyenne Mountain Entertainment, we have always been upfront with the media and our fans that we are a start-up. Like many start-ups, we face the same cash-flow issues that all pre-revenue companies face. We have maintained a core of dedicated investors, but the new economic realities are forcing us to seek out additional sources of funding and that’s what we’re doing.
We continue to move forward on the Stargate Worlds project. We recently completed a successful phase of closed beta testing and we will start a second phase early in 2009. We invite all of your readers to come to our site, check out our fantastic community and sign up for our beta.
Don’t expect that to happen in the case of Stargate Worlds, however. It seems unlikely that MGM and the game’s existing investors would pour so much money into the long-term project and not make sure that it reaches store shelves. But clearly a new infusion of cash is required, since the studio’s workers need to be paid in order to finish the title.
Our best wishes to the studio and its employees in this difficult time, and we look forward to what looks to be shaping up to be an incredible Stargate gaming experience next year.
(Thanks to ViRGE and Quade for the tip)