Activision Blizzard Lays Off Nearly 800 Employees Despite Having Record Year

Activision Blizzard Lays Off Nearly 800 Employees Despite Having Record Year
Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Earlier in the week, it was announced that Activision Blizzard would be letting go roughly 800 employees due to not living up to sales expectations. The layoff came sooner than expected, as today they made their cuts official. Approximately 8% of its staff was let go. That’s 770 people without jobs for the foreseeable future.

This is unfortunate news for those who’ve worked day and night to perfect various titles for the company. Their only saving grace was seeing the writing on the wall months ago. Plenty have already made plans to depart and take openings with other gaming companies.

Still, it’s sad to see this news. Massive cuts like this in the gaming industry make you wonder what went wrong. Activision Blizzard’s CEO, Bobby Kotick, proclaimed 2018 to be the best year they’ve had yet. How could they be making so many cuts if last year was record-breaking, though? Something isn’t adding up.

One of the glaring weaknesses of the company is their inability to get some of their better titles out to the masses. These include Overwatch, Warcraft, and of course, Diablo. Sure, they’re currently making a mobile version of Diablo – but Activision is missing the bigger picture. They need to listen to their loyal fanbase and create games on a consistent basis. They’ve had long periods of having the same titles, and this approach has turned a lot of gamers off. They need something fresh to get them engaged again.

Another huge hit to the company was their separation from Bungee. The news was surprising to many, as it appeared the two had cohesion. This was on full display with the creation of Destiny. Things went from bad to worse for Activision as Bungee retained exclusive rights to Destiny.

The video game industry can be pretty cutthroat. Sales goals constantly loom as developers and entire departments work tirelessly, trying to create the latest and greatest video game. Activision seems to have lost their momentum. One has to wonder if they can ever bounce back.

It’s not all doom and gloom, however. As mentioned earlier, they’re doing everything they can to develop a mobile version of Diablo. They’re also going to be putting emphasis on the Call of Duty franchise. These developments should bring in new developers in 2019, according to Kotick.

Let’s just hope they learn from these mistakes and figure out a way to improve going forward.