It’s not just Activision who’s laying off staff despite making more money than most small countries; EA’s surreptitiously announced a number of layoffs affecting its EA and Montreal studios. EA Montreal (together with Visceral Games) has been working on the soon to be released Army of Two: Devil’s Cartel. The worst of it is that EA’s label president Frank Gibeau has sugar-coated it; trying to make it sound like a good thing.
In a statement on EA’s site, Gibeau says that "console transitions are a complex and challenging experience," and that transition is one of the reasons for the layoffs.
"Thousands of our existing employees have been retrained and redeployed to work on the new platforms and initiatives," he writes. "But when it is not possible to redeploy a team, we soften the tough decisions with assistance. This week we let some people go in Los Angeles, Montreal as well as in some smaller locations. These are good people and we have offered outplacement services and severance packages to ease their transition to a new job."
EA won’t say exactly which of its studios are seeing cuts – but rumours are circulating that EA Montreal and Visceral Games Montreal have been shut entirely.
Remaining mum, they did issues a follow-up statement to Polygon.
Today EA internally announced some adjustments to select development teams to align staff and skills against priority growth areas, including new technologies and mobile. Many employees are being retrained for new positions; however a small number will be released. These are great, talented people and we wish them well. EA is growing globally, and we expect our headcount to increase this year.
EA Montreal is a key development studio where our long-term plan is to sharpen our teams’ focus on console and mobile games.