Tough economic times have hit a lot of companies pretty hard, the gaming industry is no exception. With developers like Midway and Grin closing shop its not so surprising that more are being faced with lay offs. The most recent developers to be hit by this are, quite frankly, rather surprisingly.
Maxix, developer of the Spore and Sims franchise, have recently laid off several dozen employees earlier today. “EA has taken action to reduce the workforce at Maxis as we focus the business and focus Maxis,” said EA to Joystiq. The publisher will continue to support Maxis’ franchises, but I can only hope that this doesn’t hurt the developer too drastically.
The other developer is Raven, who released the surprisingly good X-Men Origins: Wolverine earlier this year and Wolfenstein last week. Kotaku’s sources point to Wolfenstein, with it’s development being over-budget and poor sales performance.
Their next game, Singularity, is most effected by this in that the Wolverine studio was added to the game’s development to get it ready for it’s 2010 release. To quantify this, the development studio went from being a three game studio to a two game studio.
It’s unfortunate to hear this news on both parts, with them being both such great developers, but I’d much rather see them have to lay off some employees rather than have to close up shop. I can only hope that these layoffs don’t hinder both company’s titles quality.