A red Riot Games sign can be seen to the far left of a big developer building.
Photo via Riot Games

Gaming layoffs in 2024 are already on course to be even worse than last year

In less than a month, layoffs in 2024 are more than half of 2023's total.

This year is shaping up to be one to remember, for all the wrong reasons. It’s not even February and over 5,000 developers have lost their jobs due to mass layoffs in gaming companies—more than half of 2023’s total.

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The year of 2023 was a gloomy period for game developers. Though players saw astronomically successful games such as Baldur’s Gate 3 and Lethal Company, it wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows behind the scenes. More than 9,000 employees were let go from gaming companies last year due to layoffs induced by various reasons, the Economic Times reported. Now, we’ve already seen over 5,000 lost jobs in the gaming industry caused by mass company downsizings, “resets,” and “readjustments.”

At the time of writing the most notorious examples of layoffs in 2024 are Unity and Microsoft, both reportedly aiming to realign their goals. Unity cut around 1,800 of its staff members to reportedly reset the company months after it had suffered through widespread criticism for changing its Engine’s monetization model. Microsoft aimed to restructure Activision-Blizzard after it spent over $60 billion acquiring the game development conglomerate, resulting in the loss of 1,900 jobs.

Riot Games also downsized recently by cutting around 11 percent of its global workforce (around 530 roles) and even went as far as closing down some of its projects such as Riot Forge and more-or-less halting development on Legends of Runeterra.

Including these big players in the gaming world and some others, over 5,000 jobs have been cut from the game development industry in a year of skyrocketing releases such as Palworld. It appears that the gaming world is on course to repeat 2023, where gamers get tons of good products but developers are left out in the cold.


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Author
Andrej Barovic
Strategic Content Writer, English Major. Been in writing for 3 years. Focused mostly on the world of gaming as a whole, with particular interest in RPGs, MOBAs, FPS, and Grand Strategies. Favorite titles include Counter-Strike, The Witcher 3, Bloodborne, Sekrio, and Kenshi. Cormac McCarthy apologetic.