The logo for Rooster TeethWarner Bros. Discovery announced that it would begin shutting down Rooster Teeth just shy of its 21st birthday, marking the end of an era for a well-known gaming entertainment company. The announcement, made on Wednesday, March 6, 2024, via the company’s website, doesn’t come as a surprise, as the WBD subsidiary had financial and legal troubles recently.

The company is hosting a live stream on Thursday, March 7, 2024, on, an event that may provide more insight into the situation, but fans can also “submit questions or feelings” through a support page.

Rooster Teeth made its mark in April 2003 with the popular machinima web series Red vs. Blue; as such, it’s appropriate that the show’s last season coincides with us navigating this closure. Later, it expanded into achievement guides for games and other gaming content like Achievement Hunter and the well-loved animated series Rwby

Rooster Teeth had financial and legal troubles

Three months ago, General Manager Jordan Levine announced that the Austin, Texas-based studio wouldn’t be hosting RTX in 2024, an annual convention celebrating internet and gaming culture that started in 2011, due to the event “never being profitable.” Levine continued, “There’s an assumption that we’re ‘rolling in it’ because we’re owned by a large conglomerate, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth.” 

The writing was already on the wall for Rooster Teeth in 2019 when staffers began speaking out about “mismanagement” in the animation division, from “abusive crunch culture” to questionable financial decisions to “mocap related injuries.”

A former Rooster Teeth producer wrote on Glassdoor, a website that allows employees to review their employers, that:

Racist, homophobic, transphobic attitudes permeate everything they do. They claim to ‘be better’ but behind closed doors the executives, managers, and on screen talent are happily promoting various forms of hate speech in secret.

The Glassdoor poster continues on, “One of the ‘Founding Fathers’ was removed from the company for threatening to bring a gun to work,” an incident that was also mentioned on a Reddit thread.

In 2022, Kdin Jenzen, a Rooster Teeth director, producer, and content creator who mainly worked on Achievement Hunter, expanded on the crunch discussion, financial issues, and transphobic behavior of company members—adding that the company also has a chronic problem of not paying creators. On TwitLonger, Jenzen wrote:

From February 2013 until November 2013, I went entirely unpaid for all of my contract work. I was never given the payment promised for anything I did. When I was hired full time, and I brought that up, I was told that “it’s been so long already, it’s not really a big deal, is it?’ And then the subject was never brought up again.

“Within a few weeks of working at Rooster Teeth, I was given a nickname, that nickname was a slur,” Jenzen continues. 

A full-head helmet that's half-red, half blue with a yellow visor, against a half-red, half-blue background, above the words "Red vs blue."

Likewise, Star Trek actress Mica Burton, a former Rooster Teeth team member, spoke more openly about how racist the environment had been, both from the company and fan sides. “I know I’m still healing from the pain those two years caused me, and I am far removed,” Burton tweeted. “So please PLEASE for me, support those just now separating— just now going through it.” 

Then-member Fiona Nova backed up.

Rooster Teeth co-founder Geoff Ramsey apologized and pledged to do better, but the next two Black women hired for Achievement Hunter faced similar uphill struggles. In 2022, the company chose to post an official apology, saying, “We sincerely apologize for the hateful and harmful behavior that occurred in the past. We must do better. We are sorry.”

Screenshot of a video of Geoff Ramsey, a white man with short brown hair, mustache, and beard, and Fiona Nova, a black woman with long braided black hair, seated in front of microphones at home.
Geoff Ramsey and Fiona Nova discuss Rooster Teeth and race issues during Off Topic episode 236.

Additionally, one of the most popular faces of Rooster Teeth’s gaming team, Achievement Hunter host Ryan Haywood, was let go in August 2020 amid numerous allegations of online solicitation, sexual assault, fan grooming, and statutory rape. In a since-deleted social media post, it was reported that Haywood took “full accountability” for his actions and admitted to flirting and having sexual relations with “members of the community.” reported that when Haywood was let go, so was Adam Kovic. The Funhaus creative director and the host was “reportedly catfished into sending explicit photos by someone who pretended to be a porn actress,” some of which were taken in the Funhaus house and “a video featuring Kovic and his wife engaging in sexual intercourse, with unconfirmed claims that she was not aware of it being filmed.”

Rooster Teeth kept losing viewers

Rooster Teeth attempted to move beyond its viewership drops and become profitable by directing traffic to its website rather than YouTube. The company even went so far as to remove some of its most popular content from the latter, claiming content viewed on the Rooster Teeth website generated more revenue per ad. However, the website’s perpetual poor design stymied efforts to get fans to register for a membership. 

In October 2022, the decline was even more visible when they fired the man responsible for the gaming content, Matt Bragg, who seemed to be the most successful for them.

Matt Bragg's twitter post about his role-change at Rooster Teeth
Matt’s announcement

I watched Rooster Teeth content for about ten years and only started to distance myself in 2022; having observed the changes of late, I’m not surprised by this news. View counts on videos and site membership numbers have been declining steadily, and a recent shift to bring back the ‘friends casually playing games’ format that worked so well in the past came far too late to salvage their numbers. 

It certainly didn’t help that the toxic portion of the fanbase who’s still furious Rooster Teeth had moved away from its days of casually dropping the n- and r-words continued to alienate minority fans. 

Roost Podcast Network to continue

Levine’s memo said that the podcast side of things, Roost Podcast Network, may still continue. Several Rooster Teeth employees have focused their energy on that lately, so at least not everyone is for sure being fired today.

Warner Bros. is looking for a buyer for it, so this is potentially not all bad news. But it’s important to remember that many were fired today. While several of those found out at an all-hands meeting shortly before news broke, others, including composer Casey Lee Williams, only discovered they were out of a job thanks to social media.

Former Rooster Teeth artist Georden Whitman, who co-created Nomad of Nowhere, said, “There are too many things to say, but hope people who are now looking for work find it, and the actions of this company never repeats itself.”

“So to appease the amount of people asking about it, I have the rights to my original IP Knight of Nothing” Whitman tweeted later, effectively “the original story for Nomad.”

“I’ll finish the story. I’m just tired of people spreading misinformation they don’t understand.” In the next post, Whitman continued, “It’ll probably be a comic.”

A gaming and animation institution is gone, but at least we’ll still have the memories and videos (and maybe a comic). Or we’ll have the videos until/unless Warner Bros. goes delete-happy the way they have with movies and previously acquired and shut down channels like Machinima.

Read Jordan Levine’s full memo below:

Dear Rooster Teeth,

Since our founders created and uploaded their first video on the then-called World Wide Web in 2003, Rooster Teeth has been a source of creativity, laughter, and lasting innovation in the wildly volatile media industry.

We’ve read the headlines about industry-wide layoffs and closures, and you’ve heard me give my perspective and updates on the rapidly changing state of media and entertainment during each of our monthly All Hands meetings.

Since inheriting ownership and control of Rooster Teeth from AT&T following its acquisition of TimeWarner, Warner Bros. Discovery continued its investment in our company, content and community. Now however, it’s with a heavy heart I announce that Rooster Teeth is shutting down due to challenges facing digital media resulting from fundamental shifts in consumer behavior and monetization across platforms, advertising, and patronage.

Please note that the Roost team is not currently impacted by this action. The Roost Podcast Network will continue operating and fulfilling its obligations while WBD evaluates outside interest in acquiring this growing asset.

In the coming days and weeks, we will have many questions to answer and the opportunity to work together to implement the best way to wind things down for us and our community. We’re working through what comes next in real time, and we will be as open, direct, and accessible as possible. Thank you all in advance for your patience and support of one another.

Let’s take a moment to celebrate our 21-year contribution to the zeitgeist, advancing creativity and outlasting many of our peers from the early days of online video and digital-first content.


From a garage in Buda, TX, to global screens large and small, our teams of dreamers and doers have introduced and grown what made Rooster Teeth stand out: animation, comedy, and gaming. From new forms of animated comedy with machinima to countless viral memes, including the Immortal Snail (aka Snail Assassin), to a US-born animated series embraced by Japan as anime, and record-breaking (at the time) crowdfunded movies. You’ve accomplished so much and made dreams come true here. You’ve turned original IP into video games, comic books, and VTubers. You’ve directed short videos, mo-cap, and films. You’ve puppeteered, hosted podcasts, and have built a thriving community that spans the globe. Your creativity knows no bounds, and you’ll continue contributing significantly to culture wherever your paths may take you.


Despite passing through many corporate owners, Rooster Teeth transcended a media business and was a dynamic movement that shaped the bond between communities, creators, and storytelling. Our founders didn’t have a blueprint for a media empire, but they got close to building one alongside a community that fueled its remarkable growth. In its earliest days, RT relied on community sponsorship through time, dollars, and unwavering passion. Volunteers evolved into staff, and the snowball effect grew, resulting in new relationships, marriages, births, and shared experiences that have changed lives.


Our approach to content creation on emerging platforms paved the way for new media models. We inspired generations of creators across streaming, machinima, animation, let’s plays, merch drops, touring, podcasting, and more. Companies like GameStop, YouTube, Facebook, Spotify, and TikTok asked us to collaborate with them in their earliest days because we set a standard for what a digital-first brand could be. We boldly took our content beyond screens and into community-driven experiences.


Every story reaches its final pages. Rooster Teeth’s closure isn’t merely an end; it reflects broader business dynamics. Monetization shifts, platform algorithms, advertising challenges, and the ebb and flow of patronage—all these converging factors have led to many closures in the industry. While we learn about updates on programming day by day, we will share our plans for shows, franchises, partnerships, and merch soon and share those updates with teams internally and with the community on


Though not intentional, It’s only appropriate that our last season of Red vs. Blue coincides with us navigating this closure together. Our legacy is not just a collection of content but a history of pixels burned into our screens, minds, and hearts. Rooster Teeth has made an indelible mark on the media industry, and we should be so proud of the countless ways we pioneered a business connecting creators and content with a dedicated community.

With respect, gratitude, and sincere appreciation,

Jordan Levin

Rooster Teeth is hosting a live stream on Thursday, March 7, at “to talk] about this more.” Edited by Rebecca Oliver Kaplan.