In rather upsetting news, Bioware, the developers behind Dragon Age: Dreadwolf and Mass Effect, have announced that the company will be laying off around 50 employees as part of its efforts to restructure the studio’s approach to development.
This is also part of EA’s plans to cut its workforce, which was announced in March, and now, players are concerned about how this will affect their upcoming titles.
The Layoffs Are Part of EA’s Company-Wide Restructure
The announcement comes via a blog post from BioWare GM Gary McKay, who, in the statement, explains that the studio will be laying off more than 50 employees as part of their efforts to shift towards a “more agile and more focused studio.” In addition, they make clear they are doing all they can to ensure the process is handled with “empathy, respect, and clear communication.”
Amid these layoffs, players are naturally concerned about how this will affect the games currently in development at the studio, including Drago Age: Dreadwolf and a new Mass Effect game. McKay clarified that the studio’s dedication to Dragon Age has “never wavered” and that the team is working hard and is “confident that we’ll have the time needed to ensure Dreadwolf reaches its full potential.” Those affected by the layoff will be able to apply for other positions in EA, but McKay said that it is “unlikely” they will be able to find a new role in the company. McKay closes out his statement by thanking everyone at Bioware for their work and the community.
EA made its intentions known back in March of this year when it announced its plans to cut 6% of its workforce across the entire company, and this round of layoff is just one part of that move. Additionally, VentureBeat has reported that EA has also been unable to come to an agreement with Keywords. This company provides playtesting services, which also happens to be the same group that saw several employees vote to unionize back in June 2022. However, this is reportedly due to the two companies failing to agree on a new deal and not due to unionization.
Whether or not this was needed or the right move, it’s always a shame to see developers losing their jobs, and it once again highlights the volatile nature of the industry. Plus, with companies like EA making 7 Billion in revenue a year, many may see it as a money-saving tactic rather than company management. Hopefully, those affected can find work soon.