Analytics: in 2023, gaming companies laid off more than 10 thousand people

The year 2023 was remembered by the gaming industry for massive cuts. The wave of layoffs affected both indie studios and corporations: Embracer Group, CD PROJEKT, Ubisoft, Telltale Games, Blackbird Interactive, Ascendant Studios and many other video game-related companies announced layoffs. According to the portal videogamelayoffs.com Since January, 10,466 specialists have lost their jobs.

The Wolf Among Us

In total, 162 rounds of layoffs took place in gaming companies over the year. Most of all in November — 20. The least in March is six.

Important: the creator of the portal Farhan Noor notes that the statistics show approximate figures. Some of the data is taken from official announcements, some from the media and social networks. In his opinion, in reality, there may be much more dismissed developers, since not all companies advertise layoffs.

Top 5 companies with the largest number of laid-off employees, according to videogamelayoffs.com

1. Unity — 1165 people

In 2023, large-scale layoffs at Unity were reported three times. The last time the company announced them was at the end of November after it stopped cooperating with Weta FX, the special effects studio directed by Peter Jackson. At that time, Unity announced that it was forced to cut 265 people, or 3.8% of its total number of employees. The company also warned that it may make more cuts by March 31, 2024.

The latest layoffs took place shortly after the scandal with the new pricing policy of the Unity engine, based on installation fees, which the company then revised under pressure from developers. In a report for the third quarter of 2023, Unity said that the scandal led to financial problems, but it hopes that they are short-term.

2. ByteDance — 1000 people

A month ago, sources told Reuters that the Chinese giant ByteDance decided to restructure the gaming division and close the publisher Nuverse. Recall that the Nuverse portfolio includes games such as Marvel Snap, One Piece Blood Routes and Ragnarok X: Next Generation.

In a comment to Reuters, representatives of ByteDance confirmed the restructuring, but did not go into details.

It also became known earlier that ByteDance is going to sell Moonton studio, which developed the mobile game Mobile Legends: Bang Bang and was part of Nuverse.

3. Embracer Group — 954 people

The Swedish Embracer Group, which owns many game studios, began restructuring in June after the collapse of a $2 billion deal. The company explained that in this way it wants to reduce net debt to 8 billion Swedish kronor ($757 million).

During the restructuring, Embracer Group made cuts to Crystal Dynamics, Gearbox Publishing, Beamdog, Rainbow Studios, Zen Studios and many other subsidiaries. In addition, she closed several studios, including Free Radical Design, Campfire Cabal and Volition, and also abandoned a number of games.

According to the plan, the restructuring in Embracer Group should be completed by March 31, 2024.

4. Epic Games — 830 people

Epic Games announced the layoff of 830 people, or 16% of the staff, in September. According to CEO Tim Sweeney, the company did this because it started spending more than it earned. At the same time, Epic Games got rid of two assets: the Bandcamp music store was transferred to the Songtradr platform; and the SuperAwesome advertising provider became independent.

Sweeney assured that there will be no more layoffs at Epic Games.

5. Amazon Games — 751 people

Amazon has been conducting layoffs throughout the year. Since January, she has fired about 27,000 people across the company, including employees of the gaming division. In particular, some of the employees of the Amazon Games San Diego studio and the departments of Prime Gaming and Twitch were left without work. Amazon also closed the Game Growth project, in which it helped developers with game marketing.

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