EA has laid off roughly 6% of its total staff, the latest in a series of industry-wide cutbacks, as both gaming and technology in general show signs of struggling.
This information comes from EA’s website, where a statement from CEO Andrew Wilson was released to the public after his initial staff rounds. The statement begins by assuring employees that EA is operating from “a position of strength,” before addressing the news of the layoffs.
“As we drive greater focus across our portfolio, we are moving away from projects that do not contribute to our strategy, reviewing our real estate footprint, and restructuring some of our teams,” Wilson writes. “These decisions are expected to affect approximately six percent of our company’s workforce. This is the hardest part, and we are working through the process with the utmost care and respect.”
Wilson goes on to say that the company will help affected staff “transition to other projects,” providing severance pay and additional benefits such as healthcare and career transition services to those who are unable to get on their feet within the company.
It’s been a tumultuous time for EA in recent months. The company, publisher of Apex Legends, recently laid off approximately 200 game QA employees (thanks to GamesIndustry.biz). He also reportedly canceled a single-player Apex Legends project, prompting many former employees to move on and form a new studio at Wildlight Entertainment.
Still, it’s not all bad news for the industry giant. Respawn Entertainment recently pledged to provide long-term support for Apex Legends for another “10 to 15 years” as it opens a third studio despite the loss of hundreds of QA staff. EA also has its next big single-player release Star Wars: Jedi Survivor in April.
This, of course, is of little benefit to the hundreds of developers who are at best moved to other projects and at worst lose their jobs. It’s another dire wave crashing against the hull of the games industry as a whole, as companies abandon staff and projects left and right in hopes of staying afloat. In the middle of a recession, there are no clear skies right now.