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Eidos cut 30 jobs at Crystal Dynamics

By James Lee

Mon 12 Jan 2009 9:12am GMT / 4:12am EST / 1:12am PST

Publisher takes action following limp sales of Tomb Raider Underworld

Eidos has cut staff at developer Crystal Dynamics, the studio behind the current Tomb Raider franchise.

Following the company's share plummet of 25 per cent and a lower revised profit forecast due to lacklustre sales of Tomb Raider Underworld, the publisher told Joystiq that 30 staff members had been let go.

"We have increased the focus on the Tomb Raider franchise at Crystal Dynamics, regrettably this has resulted in the reduction in headcount," Eidos explained.

This weekend, Eidos' chief financial officer, Robert Brent, spoke with The Times about the necessity to rebrand the Tomb Raider protagonist, Lara Croft, potentially making her more female-friendly.

"We need to look at everything, as we develop the next game," said Brent. "Look at how Batman changed successfully, from the rather sad character of the Michael Keaton era to the noir style of The Dark Knight."

Brent went on to talk about the importance of reviving the brand as sales drop and the title risks becoming irrelevant in today's market, particularly in the US.

"Lara is still looked on with affection in Britain and Europe, but sequels don't necessarily go on for ever," he explained. "The market in America is very competitive and if a game is not selling, retailers simply stop stocking it."

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