EA’s Bioware Is Laying Off 50 Employees
Electronic Arts said that its BioWare studio based in Edmonton, Canada, is laying off 50 people on the team even as Dragon Age: Dreadwolf is in the late stages of development.
General manager Gary McKay wrote that layoffs were necessary to ensure the health of the studio as it continues development on Dragon Age: Dreadwolf.
The layoffs look to be part of a larger restructuring happening at EA, which employed roughly 12,900 people as of March of 2022. In March of this year, EA CEO Andrew Wilson announced that the company would be cutting roughly 6% of its staff, or around 800 employees, worldwide.
“In order to meet the needs of our upcoming projects, continue to hold ourselves to the highest standard of quality, and ensure BioWare can continue to thrive in an industry that’s rapidly evolving,” BioWare general manager Gary McKay wrote in a post shared on the developer’s website, “we must shift towards a more agile and more focused studio. It will allow our developers to iterate quickly, unlock more creativity, and form a clear vision of what we’re building before development ramps up.”
He added, “To achieve this, we find ourselves in a position where change is not only necessary, but unavoidable. As difficult as this is to say, rethinking our approach to development inevitably means reorganizing our team to match the studio’s changing needs. As part of this transition, we are eliminating approximately 50 roles at BioWare. That is deeply painful and humbling to write. We are doing everything we can to ensure the process is handled with empathy, respect, and clear communication.”
McKay’s leadership will not be affected. McKay calls today’s restructuring part of a “long-term vision that will preserve the health of the studio and better enable us to do what we do best: create exceptional story-driven single-player experiences filled with vast worlds and rich characters”. He also confirms both Dragon Age: Dreadwolf and the next Mass Effect remain in development, despite the significant layoffs. Michael Gamble, who has been with BioWare for 15 years, will continue to serve as head of the Mass Effect team. Currently, the studio is in pre-production for the next game in the Mass Effect franchise. Corinne Busche and John Epler, two leaders on Dragon Age, also continue in their roles.
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