Industry Layoffs Sweep Across EA, Sega, Sony, Microsoft

In a span of two days, layoffs have been confirmed at Sony, Microsoft, Electronic Arts and Sega, with some companies cutting thousands of jobs.


Even though video games are still one of the ten things we're buying during the recession, game companies are still looking to cut costs wherever they can.

Yesterday, Sega of America confirmed 30 staff cuts, with a rep telling Edge Online that the company "must take steps to reduce our cost structure and ensure long-term success."

Meanwhile, Sony said it's closing down two TV manufacturing plants and cutting 2,000 jobs in Japan. The corporation also announced plans to reduce its staff in the games, music and movie divisions, but there were no specifics on how exactly the Sony Computer Entertainment division will be affected.

Earlier today Microsoft cut 1,400 jobs, and plans to eliminate another 3,600 during the next 18 months. According to Kotaku, the cuts will be made in the research & development, marketing, sales, finance, legal, HR and IT departments, with no details yet on cuts affecting the Xbox 360 division.

Electronic Arts also confirmed that layoffs occurred at "Madden NFL" developer EA Tiburon, though they declined to share how many of the 650 employees were let go. The cuts are part of the company's previously announced plan to consolidate studios and terminate 1,000 employees by March 31, 2009. EA Mythic chief Mark Jacobs confirmed rumors that cost-cutting measures have affected the team working on "Warhammer Online" in a forum post. Just moments ago, Kotaku cited sources from within EA Blackbox that as many as 150 to 200 people were let go.

Unfortunately, this seems to be just the beginning of such drastic cost-cutting measures in the game industry during the economic downturn.

Aspiring game developers, do you feel apprehensive about trying to enter the industry right now? And as gamers, are you worried about how much these job cuts will affect your games?

[Photo: Sony Corporation CEO Howard Stringer by Koji Watanabe/Getty Images]

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