Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) announced at its most recent earnings call that it will cut roughly 10 percent, or 900 members, of its workforce.
The new round of layoffs comes after EA shut down two of its studios: PopCap Vancouver, developer of the "Peggle," "Bejeweled" and the "Plants vs. Zombies" series, and Quicklime Games, the developer of "Need For Speed: World."
EA Partners, which developed "Brütal Legend," was shuttered as well. Does this mean that more studios will be closed after this latest round of layoffs?
It's possible that the layoffs were a result of weak sales of EA's most recent game releases. Are "Crysis 3," the third game in the shooter franchise, and "Dead Space 3," the third installment in that survival-horror series, to blame for the slashes in EA’s staff? Reports circulated in early March that "Dead Space 4" has been canceled as a result of the inability of "Dead Space 3" to reach its sales goals.
"Dead Space 3," which was released Feb. 5, received mixed reaction from critics. It earned scores of 80 and 7.8 from PC Gamer and IGN, respectively. Market research firm NPD reports that "Dead Space 3" sold 605,000 copies in February. "Crysis 3," which launched on Feb. 19, sold 260,000 units in the 12 days after its release, according to NPD. PC Gamer and GameSpot gave "Crysis 3" marks of 81 and 7.5, respectively.
It will be interesting to see if and when new "Crysis" and/or "Dead Space" games are announced. In the interim, how do you feel about this news? Did you see this coming? Are you surprised that "Crysis 3" and "Dead Space 3" sold below EA’s expectations? Sound off in the comments below.