The most recent big name studio to be hit with the recent plague of staff losses is Destiny developer Bungie, with many individuals already sharing their unemployment status on social media. Bloomberg’s Jason Schreier initially reported that a meeting had been called by the head of the company to update the staff, before Pete Parsons (CEO of Bungie) publicly made it known:
Today is a sad day at Bungie as we say goodbye to colleagues who have all made a significant impact on our studio. What these exceptional individuals have contributed to our games and Bungie culture has been enormous and will continue to be a part of Bungie long into the future.— pete parsons (@pparsons) October 30, 2023
Further reports then confirmed that an ongoing impact to their existing projects would also occur, with the next Destiny expansion The Final Shape being pushed to June 2024 and new game Marathon now slated for a 2025 release.
NEW: Bungie laid off an undisclosed number of staff today, part of ongoing job cuts across PlayStation. The company recently delayed the upcoming Destiny 2 expansion The Final Shape to June 2024 and the new game Marathon to 2025, sources tell Bloomberg https://t.co/UiLwy28VyG pic.twitter.com/aN2BgOROj8— Jason Schreier (@jasonschreier) October 30, 2023
While no public statement regarding these titles has been made, the above news has been reported as an internal communication to staff.
A problematic development, given that the recent acquisition by Sony to wholly own Bungie as a company had apparently come with a financial caveat that close to 1.2 billion dollars of the deal would be set aside to ensure staff retention. Less than 12 months later, we are still seeing staff firings – with the full scope not yet really revealed. Individuals with quite a history at Bungie have reported the loss of their position, so it’s quite a broad swathe of employees being let go.
It’s the most recent chapter in a depressing spiral of studio layoffs, made all the worse by the stellar year of releases the gaming community has enjoyed.