Natural evolution? Eh...Rift MMO hit hard by layoffs at Trionhttp://www.gamasutra.com/view/news/183304/Rift_MMO_hit_hard_by_layoffs_at_Trion.php#.UMicPh19K2W
An affected source tells us that the number of developers out of work today -- developers spanning several disciplines, including artists and designers -- numbers somewhere in the neighborhood of 40.
The company confirmed that there were layoffs today "in response to market conditions, product timelines and the natural evolution of our company," though refused to confirm either the number affected or whether it was the Rift team specifically.
I've started to say the only time you want to be working for an MMO dev not named Blizzard is just before launch. It's like a paper airplane. Exciting until launch, and then eventually a decay back to earth is inevitable...
They are making a game called End of Days as well, which they recently took entirely inhouse. That game has been rumoured to be redesigned completely, and still not working, so it *could* also be because of that.