Blizzard axing 600 staff worldwide

But World of Warcraft development teams unaffected by latest round of layoffs

Blizzard is to axe 600 jobs following an internal review. Around 90 per cent of these reductions will be unrelated to internal development, and the World of Warcraft development team is not affected.

"Constant evaluation of teams and processes is necessary for the long-term health of any business," said CEO of Blizzard Mike Morhaime.

"Over the last several years, we've grown our organisation tremendously and made large investments in our infrastructure in order to better serve our global community. However, as Blizzard and the industry have evolved we've also had to make some difficult decisions in order to address the changing needs of our company.

"Knowing that, it still does not make letting go of some of our team members any easier. We're grateful to have had the opportunity to work with the people impacted by today's announcement, we're proud of the contributions they made here at Blizzard, and we wish them well as they move forward."

Blizzard's World of Warcraft shed around 1.7 million subscribers between October and September last year, with total numbers as of November 2011 at 10.3 million players.

The publisher said that forthcoming releases, such as Diablo 3, would not be affected by the redundancies.

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Latest comments (13)

John Donnelly Quality Assurance 6 years ago
Best of luck to everyone affected by this news today.
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Private Industry 6 years ago
Good luck to all.

Also a bit incorrectly quoted, it`s around 90% are not related to game development as oposed to what it says here as internal development.
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Sam Maxted Journalist / Community / Support 6 years ago
I can see the support staff for WoW being heavily affected by this, as it must surely be a huge department and is probably the first place management would look when trying to cut costs. Other than that... maybe some jobs are being taken over by staff with similar duties at Activision?

This being purely speculation on my part, and of course, good luck to all affected by this.
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Show all comments (13)
Sean Warren Inspector 6 years ago
Start company.
Exploit labor.
Overcharge for services.
Seize power.
Rule world.
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Graham Simpson Tea boy, Collins Stewart6 years ago
And lo the immature and ponitless comments begin. Kottick bashing will be next once everyone gets out of bed.

Of course the job losses are nothing to with the fact that WOW has now matured and in decline. 1 million less players from peak will mean there are Game Masters etc doing nothing all day. The player base is in terminal decline though the Panda XP will soften the blow. Sad as job losses are not even Blizzard can pay people to sit around and twiddle their thumbs.

Of course this means nothing so let the ATVI/Kottick bashing commence. Great industry website this.
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gi biz ;, 6 years ago
I wonder if they're using the extra money they saved to finally make their community happy and pull out the native Linux version of their games. Personally that's all I'm waiting for to buy their products. A quick search shows that the demand is pretty high, at least for Starcraft 2.
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Tom Keresztes Programmer 6 years ago
I still prefer immature comments over GI censoring them.
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Bruce Everiss Marketing Consultant 6 years ago
Kotick cutting the fat to face the reality of a shrinking market for their products. Because profit must come first if any organisation is to survive.
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Klaus Preisinger Freelance Writing 6 years ago
Sometimes the internal logic of the arguments in press releases makes me smirk.

Address needs of customer and provide good service -> Evolution of the industry -> Address the changed needs of the company

So in essence, there was an evolution of the industry no longer requiring to provide service to the customer? Or was it just the fact that fewer player mean less support required, in which case calling people quitting an evolution of the industry is quite the choice of words.
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Bruce Everiss Marketing Consultant 6 years ago
@Tom Pickard

So if you are profitable you should keep unnecessary staff?
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Joshua Rose Executive Producer / Lead Designer, Storm Eagle Studios6 years ago
@ Sean
You forgot 'Steal Underpants'

Edited 1 times. Last edit by Joshua Rose on 1st March 2012 3:08pm

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Sandy Lobban Founder, Noise Me Up6 years ago
@ bruce.

Its statements like that stopped anyone with any ability working for EA in the past. Some humility and tact can go a long way to making a business a success.
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John Donnelly Quality Assurance 6 years ago
Tom, in both 2010 and 2011 Activision Blizzard posted huge profits yet Activision cut the title slate and shed a huge number of jobs.
It is not aways about the overall numbers of the business but it could be down to individual operating unit margins.
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