recent layoffs at SOE, we're now getting word from Eurogamer that some voluntary departures had happened at the beginning of the month as well. Studio Director and Executive Producer Matt Wilson, Art Director Corey Dangel, and Producer John Smith had all left the Seattle studio to form a new venture called Detonator Games. This Seattle studio is currently producing the upcoming espionage MMO The Agency.
Eurogamer also states that a source "in the Seattle game development community" suggested to them that this means some major changes to The Agency, possibly delaying it beyond its projected 2010 release date. SOE responded to that rumor by saying, "The Agency is not undergoing a reboot of any sorts - that is incorrect. The team in Seattle is still working diligently on this project and we're looking forward to showing you new content in the future."
Whether these departures will affect the production of The Agency or not, we'll just have to wait and see. What we do know for sure is that the game is playable and looks quite good, according to a demo we saw at E3 earlier this year. Best of luck to the SOE Seattle team and to Detonator Games for whatever project they may be developing.