When System Shock 3 was announced back in 2017 following an agreement made between Starbreeze Studios and OtherSide Entertainment, System Shock fans were delighted to see what's next. That being said, the road has been very rocky thus far, which resulted in Starbreeze selling their publishing rights back over to the original team over at OtherSide following the massive tanking of their Overkill's The Walking Dead game. Unfortunately, no other publishers stepped up when OtherSide was looking for another company to step in and take the publishing helm.
According to recent reports (via VGC, via PC Gamer), design director Chase Jones was among the first to leave the studio in addition to "System Shock 3's writer & director, senior designer, lead programmer, QA lead, senior environment artist and more." Some have reportedly left on their own volition while others were laid off unexpectedly. There is also a thread available that has been tracking the steady wave of layoffs that have apparently been happening since June of last year.
When asked about the future of System Shock 3, one OtherSide dev mentioned that they have "no idea" what's going on but that "The team is no longer employed." They added that the team was very behind in content development, "Was the failure of the project right? It's hard to say. If Starbreeze hadn't gone into crisis I think we would've delivered something interesting with some fresh and innovative gameplay, but a much smaller game than what people were expecting and inevitably disappointing for a sequel to such a beloved franchise.
"Those high expectations drove a lot of expensive experimentation. We were a small team and knew we couldn't compete with current immersive sims in production quality and breadth, so we had to be creative and clever and weird. And we were on our way to make something unique and possibly fun, but probably not what the audience was hungry for."
While the excitement for System Shock 3 is high, it looks the future of the series is grim. We are among the many sites reaching out for comment about the state of the studio and whether this project will die off or be handing off to another studio to take on and deliver.