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nancydrew112Her Interactive — the 19-year-old creator of the Nancy Drew game series — has laid off an undisclosed number of staffers.

In an email to GeekWire, Her Interactive marketing director Jared Nieuwenhuis said that the recent reduction in staff was tied to “changing market conditions in the game industry and shifting priorities at Her Interactive.”

silentspy9“This decision was not performance related in any way and it was very difficult for us to say goodbye to some immensely talented employees,” said Nieuwenhuis. He added that the Bellevue-based company remains in a good position in the gaming industry, noting that more girls are becoming interested in coding and game design.

“We are extremely excited about the company’s future,” he said. “Our vision remains the same, to be the undisputed leader in creating high quality, fun and inspiring games for women of all ages regardless of platform.”

But game players posting on the company’s community forums expressed concern about the layoffs, with one writing: “I’m worried about the future of Nancy Drew games.”

Penny Milliken
Penny Milliken

Her Interactive plans to release its 32nd mystery adventure game later this month, titled Nancy Drew: Sea of Darkness.

The company named former Walt Disney marketing exec Penny Milliken as CEO last September. She had previously served on the board since 2003.

“Her Interactive is one of those rare companies to have truly mastered the mystery adventure game genre, and I couldn’t be more honored to be chosen to lead this company,” Milliken said at the time of her appointment. “The opportunities for Her Interactive are enormous, but to seize it, we must focus clearly, move quickly, and continue to adapt our games to different platforms and playing preferences.  A big part of my job will be to accelerate our ability to bring innovative games and apps to our customers more quickly.”

GeekWire columnist Frank Catalano contributed to this report. 

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