EA layoffs hits 5% of its employees – Mandalorian FPS cancelled, Ridgeline Games closed

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EA is the latest game company to announce layoffs, with 5% of its workforce to be made redundant. From the most recent headcount EA provided – 13,400 in March 2023 – that would amount to around 670 people.

As part of this restructuring plan, EA has also cancelled games, is sunsetting certain live games, and is closing down a development studio.

These include a Star Wars The Mandalorian FPS that was in development at Respawn Entertainment, and the closure of Battlefield studio Ridgeline Games, which had only just been founded in October 2021 to work on the Battlefield franchise – VGC reports Criterion will now lead up the next single player Battlefield.

In a message to employees, EA CEO Andrew Wilson said that the company will be “moving away from development of future licensed IP that we do not believe will be successful in our changing industry.” This will let them “drive creativity, accelerate innovation, and double down on our biggest opportunities — including our owned IP, sports, and massive online communities — to deliver the entertainment players want today and tomorrow.”

That would certainly explain the cancellation of The Mandalorian game, though EA representatives have confirmed that their Black Panther and Iron Man games are both still in development. GamesIndustry.biz reports that the team at Respawn has been redeployed to other projects, while EA’s Laura Miele has stated that some of the Ridgeline team will be moved to LA-based Ripple Effect (which is quite a relocation from Seattle) and shift to multiplayer projects.

EA’s Laura Miele said, “As we’ve looked at Respawn’s portfolio over the last few months, what’s clear is the games our players are most excited about are Jedi and Respawn’s rich library of owned brands. Knowing this, we have decided to pivot away from early development on a Star Wars FPS Action game to focus our efforts on new projects based on our owned brands while providing support for existing games.”

It’s another week of mass layoffs in the games industry, with Sony announcing 900 redundancies and the closure of London Studio, Supermassive Games cutting 10% of their workforce, Deck Nine 20%, and Die Gute Fabrik going on hiatus while they search for more funding.

via GamesIndustry.biz, VGC

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