I was pretty upset when I read of the “routine” layoffs at EA Canada, something I took some stick for. I can’t even feel emotional over the latest news to come on that front, as two more companies have been affected.
A source with IO Interactive has confirmed to Kotaku that an undisclosed number of jobs have been eliminated from the company.
“I can confirm that we have made some internal changes at IO Interactive which has regrettably resulted in the loss of some jobs. This is a natural part of any studio’s existence when you ramp-up and ramp-down on projects to ensure you have the right level of resource and expertise within the studio. We genuinely wish those who have been affected by this, the best of luck for the future.”
The lower-than-expected performance of Kane and Lynch: Dog Days, which started hot in the first week of release but tapered off sales-wise after a run of mixed reviews, is likely the major reason for the layoffs. Soon after the layoffs were confirmed, Square Enix, the company that bought parent company Eidos in 2009, lowered financial forecasts for their fiscal year, targeting a profit of Ã‚Â¥1.7bn ($21.1m; down from Ã‚Â¥2.4bn/$29.8m), citing slow software sales as a main reason. It’s the second set of layoffs to hit the developer this year, with jobs being cut back in March. It’s been rumoured that a project was also cancelled, with 3D Realms’ George Broussard claiming it was the as-yet unannounced Hitman 5, but these are spurious rumours at best and should be taken with a massive grain of salt until the company confirms.
VentureBeat also reports that employees are being laid off by Namco Bandai in the United States (note: I have not personally confirmed this report with a second source, so until this is updated, I am calling this one a report, and not a definitive). VentureBeat reports 90 jobs as being lost, though the official number has not been confirmed. The layoffs are due to a reorganization of two different businesses into Namco Bandai Games America, which is looking to expand the company’s presence in mobile and digital gaming, and also jibes with the company’s Group Restart Plan that I have discussed in the past.
Layoffs are a routine part of the industry. I, and the people making the games, begrudgingly accept this. But it’s never enjoyable to see so many people getting laid off at a time, especially with the holidays coming up. As usual, our best wishes are with those affected.
Tags: financial, io interactive, Kane and Lynch 2, layoffs, namco bandai, Square-Enix