Gonzo Sports Experience Blaseball Is Ending, Studio Lays Off Staff

Blaseball, the “absurdist baseball simulation” that became a social media sensation during the COVID years, is now over. Developer The Game Band announced the closure earlier this month, stating that the game simply isn’t sustainable to run, and that it will lay off an undisclosed number of staff as a result of this move. In a blog post, The Game Band states that the studio has has struggled to balance the workload that Blaseball requires.

“Since Blaseball’s inception, we’ve been fighting against the amount of work it takes to keep Blaseball true to itself while financially supporting the team and keeping our staff healthy,” it reads in part. “We’ve tried countless solutions to make it work, and we’ve come to the conclusion that this fight isn’t one we can win in the long run. The cost, literally and metaphorically, is too high. So we are making the decision to end it here instead of changing Blaseball into something unrecognizable.”

The studio further says that it’ll now be making something new, which means that it has to lay off a significant portion of its staff, including artists, engineers, designers, and QA testers. The rest of the post eulogizes Blaseball, stating that it was born out of a desire to find connection during the early days of the pandemic. The studio says that it will grieve the loss of the game. It’s unclear what the studio’s next project will look like. The announcement of Blaseball’s closure produced a large response on social media, with fans mourning its loss.

Sometimes described as a horror game, Blaseball was a browser-based text game that simulated many aspects of baseball, including gambling with virtual currency. As the game went on, it became more and more absurd, with the various teams banding together against a large peanut known as The Shelled One in one early storyline. Some fans described the game’s demise as unsurprising, with one Reddit user saying that game introduced too many mechanics and changes too quickly, which led to users finding it difficult to keep up with. If you’re curious about what Blaseball was, check out People Make Games’ excellent primer on the topic.

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