Funomena, the Californian studio behind Wattam, will be forced to close if it fails to secure a round of investment in the short term. Talks were up and running prior to GDC, but the deal in question has not closed at the time of writing. "Last week we let everyone know that if we do not successfully finish the fundraise, we will be forced to close the studio," the team's Twitter account explained. The news comes after allegations were directed at boss Robin Hunicke in a People Make Games exposé.
Funomena's full statement reads: "Funomena was in the process of closing an investment round just before GDC, & we are still actively working to do so. Last week we let everyone know that if we do not successfully finish the fundraise, we will be forced to close the studio. We love game development, we love making games and we love bringing people into the community. It is our sincere hope that we can continue to do so, together."
It had been reported that Funomena was already in the process of closing, with all contractors laid off last week. This statement from the developer at least suggests there could be hope of a future for the studio.
The developer hit the news recently after a People Make Games documentary from Chris Bratt revealed how company boss Robin Hunicke has reportedly been emotionally abusive towards staff, toxic, and on numerous occasions has shared employees' personal information to humiliate them. In response to those allegations, Hunicke shared the following statement on Twitter.