League Of Legends Developer Riot Reportedly Begins Layoffs
League of Legends and Valorant developer Riot Games reportedly became the latest high-profile developer to begin a wave of layoffs on Thursday. According to reporter Jacob Wolf, the layoffs will primarily affect the company’s recruiting, human resources, support, and esports departments.
Riot Games is making layoffs, which started earlier today, multiple people have told me.
Size and scope are unclear at the moment, so far I’ve heard of effects across recruiting & human resources, support and esports. Will do more reporting in the morning for the newsletter.
— Jacob Wolf (@JacobWolf) January 19, 2023
Though full details on the scope and scale of the layoffs have yet to emerge, Riot’s move here is unfortunately not surprising, nor is it unique to the company. Several large game developers (as well as tech companies) have announced significant workforce reductions in recent days, including Unity.
The most notable announcement so far came from Microsoft, which announced the elimination of around 10,000 jobs earlier in January. While that reduction impacts many departments outside of the company’s video game divisions, social media posts indicate that Halo Infinite developer 343 Interactive was hit hard by the layoffs. Other impacted parties include Gears developer The Coalition, Bethesda, and those at the greater Xbox brand.
Though it’s certainly true that pre-recession jitters have triggered some of these moves, data indicates that the larger video game industry is experiencing a period of mild decline, down from an all-time high in 2021. Analysts point to a variety of factors for this decrease in sales, including the end of the pandemic, delays to notable triple-A games, and poor economic news from massive markets such as China. However, some analysts believe that 2023 will be a bounce-back year for the industry.
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