According to four insiders, ByteDance, the company behind TikTok, is planning to shut down its Nuverse gaming brand and withdraw from mainstream video games. ByteDance confirmed that its gaming business will undergo restructuring, but did not provide further details. A spokesperson stated that the company regularly reviews its businesses and makes adjustments to focus on long-term strategic growth areas.
ByteDance will reportedly inform staff to stop working on unreleased games by December and will seek ways to divest from titles already launched. While the decision is expected to impact hundreds of employees, casual gaming brand Ohayoo and casual games featured on TikTok will not be affected. ByteDance has no plans to return to the global video games market, according to anonymous sources.
Earlier this month, ByteDance began seeking buyers for its game-developing subsidiary Moonton Technology. The company also overhauled its virtual reality firm Pico and cut much of its content team. Nuverse, created by ByteDance in 2019, was intended to be a major push into global gaming and a strategic element of its competition with domestic rival Tencent Holdings, the world’s largest gaming company.
Its best-known game, “Marvel Snap”, was an online card game with a cult following but was not a commercial success. Other titles include action games such as “One Piece: The Voyage” and “Crystal of Atland”. Nuverse made headlines again in 2021 when ByteDance formalized its status as one of its six business units under a broader structural overhaul. To boost its production capacity, Nuverse acquired external studios, including C4games, earlier this year.