As the video game industry continues to endure the fallout of the bombshell announcement that Activision-Blizzard would be laying off almost 800 staffers, more information has come out detailing how the layoffs will shake out. Weeks after the initial announcement was made, it turns out more than a quarter of those affected come from Blizzard Entertainment. More specifically, 209 Blizzard staff members lost their jobs.
Of the 209 people affected, they are spread across Blizzard offices all over the United States. In addition to Burbank, Irvine, and Santa Monica, staffers in New York City, Austin, and Bloomington were also hit with layoffs. Divisions affected include marketing, customer service, publishing, quality assurance, and more. The largest-hit division was IT, losing 41 employees.
Affected employees were given 60 days’ worth of compensation and benefits. They were given a severance package, though it’s unknown if that is in addition to the 60 days. Of course, none of these workers were unionized.
Activision Blizzard CEO Bobby Kotic announced the mass layoffs in February 2019, following rumors that emerged the week prior. The move was a part of a reorganization of sorts, as part of a move to emphasize core franchises like Call of Duty and Overwatch. Cuts were made to “non-development” departments in an attempt to reduce redundancies across the company. It also plans to increase its development slate across all divisions in the coming years. The layoffs come as Activision achieved “record results” in 2018.
Despite not having a “major frontline release” in 2019, Blizzard is keeping busy with the games it has out now. A new map, the breathtaking Paris, recently went live for the hero shooter. In addition, Overwatch’s 30th hero, Baptiste, was just revealed.