Tencent's Western Ambitions Stumble as US Studio Team Kaiju Shuts Down

Tencent shuts US video games studio Team Kaiju. Learn more!
Team Kaiju

Shenzhen, China - December 18, 2023 - In a surprise move, Chinese tech giant Tencent has closed its US-based video game studio Team Kaiju, casting a shadow over its global expansion plans. The studio, established in 2020, was seen as a key element in Tencent's bid to develop AAA titles for the Western market, leveraging experienced talent and cultural understanding.

Sources familiar with the matter confirmed the closure, which reportedly took place in June 2023. Team Kaiju was led by industry veteran Scott Warner, known for his work on blockbuster titles like "Halo 4." However, Warner's departure from the studio in April hinted at potential internal struggles.

According to the company's executives,."while the decision to close Team Kaiju was difficult, it allows us to focus our resources on projects that best align with our evolving global strategy. We remain committed to developing high-quality games for players around the world and are confident that our studios in Canada and Europe will contribute significantly to this goal."

"We value the contributions of the talented team at Team Kaiju and are working to ensure a smooth transition for them. We appreciate their understanding and dedication during this time."


Tencent, known for its investments in major Western developers like Ubisoft and Activision Blizzard, had entrusted Team Kaiju with the development of a big-budget multiplayer game. The project's fate remains unclear, along with the specifics surrounding the studio's closure. Tencent has yet to make an official statement on the matter.

Industry analysts speculate that the shutdown could be attributed to various factors, including creative direction clashes, development hurdles, or even broader strategic shifts within Tencent. Some believe the company might be reassessing its approach to the Western market, favoring partnerships and acquisitions over internal development.

The closure of Team Kaiju represents a setback for Tencent's ambitions to compete with established Western game giants. However, the company's commitment to global expansion remains unwavering, as evidenced by its recent investments in European studios and initiatives like Lightspeed LA, its ambitious console game development unit.


The closure also raises questions about the viability of foreign studios operating under the umbrella of large Chinese companies. Navigating cultural differences and regulatory hurdles can be complex, and studios like Team Kaiju may face additional challenges if not granted enough autonomy.

Ultimately, the impact of Team Kaiju's closure on Tencent's global gaming strategy remains to be seen. While the setback is undeniable, it could also serve as a valuable learning experience, prompting the company to refine its approach to conquering the Western market.

About the Author

Favour Okeibunor is a Software Engineer, Financial and Tech writer, blending financial expertise with storytelling skills to simplify complex Financial and technology topics for readers and clients alike.

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