BioWare has been going through a bit of a turbulent time as of late, with Star Wars: The Old Republic subscribers dropping like flies from the MMORPG, nearly 23 percent in 3 months. On top of that we have learned an unspecified number of developers for the game, based in BioWare’s Austin studio have been let go by the company. BioWare citing the lay-offs as a necessary process to allow reconstructing.
The news was made public by BioWare co-founder Greg Zeschuk, through a post on the official old republic forums. The post read:
Hey folks, since you’re reading this you may likely have heard that we’ve done some restructuring here on the SWTOR team. Sadly, we are bidding farewell to some talented, passionate and exceptionally hard-working people who helped make SWTOR a reality. Impacting people’s lives this way is always very hard, but we’re ensuring the affected people are treated with dignity, fairness and respect.
Looking back at launch, we all came together and did something historic. We executed one of the largest, most successful and stable launches of any MMO yet in industry history. That is not an easy feat for any development team or company and we are humbled and honored by our fan community’s strong support both at launch and beyond.
Looking forward, the studio remains vibrant and passionate about our many upcoming initiatives for Star Wars: The Old Republic. We still have a very substantial development team working on supporting and growing the game, and we feel we are in a strong position, with your continued involvement and feedback, to continue to build Star Wars: The Old Republic as one of the most compelling and successful online experiences in the world today. There are many strong initiatives planned for cool new content and new features that we’re excited to tell you about in the upcoming weeks and months.
Rest assured that we remain dedicated to delivering a high quality service in SWTOR to you, our fans, and we will continue to support and grow Star Wars: The Old Republic over the weeks, months and years to come.
Most of the development team behind the game were based in the Austin studio, so it hit home hard for everyone involved in the production. On the other hand it’s not uncommon for gaming studios to let some of their development team go after a games release.
The lay-off of staff might be the after effect of subscribers turning away from Old Republic, or somehow related to the Mass Effect fiasco. However Zeschuk and Muzyka wrote that BioWare “remains vibrant and passionate about our many upcoming initiatives for Star Wars: The Old Republic.”
Hopefully those affected by the lay-offs will find new positions in the gaming industry soon.