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Gearbox hit by staff cuts

But all current projects still in production, says Pitchford

According to numerous reports over the weekend, Brothers in Arms developer Gearbox Software has laid off a number of staff, with as many as 26 employees affected.

However, despite rumours, Gearbox president Randy Pitchford has said that the forthcoming Sega title Alien: Colonial Marines is still in production and has not been canned.

The company has spent the last six weeks reorganising, according to Pitchford, and any lay-offs are result the natural development cycle.

"Over the last six weeks, we’ve been adjusting our internal strategy to move from being about opportunity, ambition and growth to a strategy that is oriented towards quality, focus and performance," Pitchford told Kotaku.

"A number of recent tactical decisions here are a reflection of this new commitment and strategy. The timing of these tactical decisions relates more to natural manoeuvring that all studios should only consider after they finish a big effort than anything else."

Pitchford said that recruitment was still ongoing at the studio despite cutbacks, and the developer is working on unannounced projects, the Sega Aliens game and Borderlands for 2K Games.

"While our commitment to focus and quality may slow the speed of our growth in numbers, we are, in fact, currently hiring," confirmed Pitchford.

"In 2005, after having a lot of success with games from Half-Life: Opposing Force to Halo on the PC to our original Brothers in Arms: Road to Hill 30, we embarked upon a strategy where opportunity in the industry and the ambition of key talent here was driving a lot of growth for us.

"The strategy has been amazingly transformative for us. We've been growing very fast – more than doubling in size between 2007 and 2008 and outpacing general industry growth in staff and revenue by an order of magnitude. This growth has catapulted us to become one of the most powerful independent studios in the world," said Pitchford.

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Matt Martin avatar
Matt Martin: Matt Martin joined GamesIndustry in 2006 and was made editor of the site in 2008. With over ten years experience in journalism, he has written for multiple trade, consumer, contract and business-to-business publications in the games, retail and technology sectors.
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