- Bungie appears to have laid off a number of employees without warning.
- Members of various departments including marketing, publishing, quality assurance and even support have reportedly been let go.
- There are also reports that forthcoming release has been delayed into mid-2024 and 2025.
On Monday evening a number of Bungie staff members took to X (formerly Twitter) to announce that they were among many that would be losing their jobs at the Destiny 2 developer.
As of the time of writing the number of staff members who have lost their jobs is unclear according to a Destiny news account on X, the following departments at Bungie have been hit by layoffs:
- Quality Assurance,
- HR, and
Even the award-winning composer of Destiny’s score, Michael Salvatori was laid off according to reports.
What makes this all the more shocking is that when Bungie was acquired by Sony last year, Sony itself elected to spend $1.2 billion of the $3.6 billion it paid on employee retention.
“Approximately one-third of the 3.6 billion U.S. dollar consideration for the acquisition
consists primarily of deferred payments to employee shareholders, conditional upon
their continued employment, and other retention incentives. These amounts will be
paid over the course of several years after the acquisition closes and will be recorded
as expenses for accounting purposes,” Sony told shareholders in its Q3 2021 financial results [PDF].
Amid the layoffs, videogame pundit Jason Schreier reports that the release of The Final Shape, Destiny 2’s next mainline expansion, has been delayed until June 2024 from February 2024. Per the report, this pushes the release – which was likely to be hugely popular – out of Sony’s current financial year and into the next. The release of Marathon, Bungie’s re-release of its old title few remember, has been pushed into 2025.
And yet, Bungie has elected to remain rather silent. Only chief executive officer Pete Parsons offered a statement and it reads like something a PR team honed over the course of a few weeks.
“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,” Parsons posted.
“These are truly talented people. If you have openings, I would highly recommend each and every one of them,” the CEO, who retains his job, wrote.
This silence is uncharacteristic of Bungie and in its wake members of the community are becoming aggravated especially given that many of the people being laid off aren’t responsible for the poor decisions made by the likes of management and Sony. The replies below Parson’s post are a mix of criticism, anger and disgust at the fact Bungie laid off employees within spitting distance of the holiday season.
We’ll be keeping an eye on this matter and provide more information as it comes to light.