Long-rumoured layoffs at Activision Blizzard were confirmed yesterday during the company's earnings call.
While CEO Bobby Kotik opened the call with a declaration that the company had seen "record results" that were "the best in our history," he noted that the Activision Blizzard's focus was "de-prioritizing initiatives that are not meeting expectations and reducing certain non-development and administrative-related costs across the business."
The result will be an 8% reduction off its work force, equating to around 775 staff. The layoffs will occur across Activision, Blizzard, and King.
King-owned Z2Live studio has been closed completely. The Seattle-based mobile game developer consisted of 78 staff.
The company projects a smaller release year for 2019, which would partially explain the decision to cut non-essential roles – many of which related to supporting Destiny. With Bungie's split from Activision, it's likely most of those roles will be among the redundancies.
While the company saw expansions like World of Warcraft's Battle for Azeroth launch last year, Blizzard Entertainment did not see a new release in 2018, and confirmed in the earnings call that the same would be the case for 2019. Instead the studio will rely on releases like World of Warcraft Classic and Warcraft 3: Reforged
2018 also saw some significant changes in Blizzard's leadership, with CEO Mike Morhaime leaving in October.
Our thoughts go out to all those affected.