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Life is Strange: True Colours developer becomes the 3rd studio this week to suffer layoffs

Deck Nine Games, the studio behind Life is Strange: True Colors and Telltale’s The Expanse, has announced it’s laying off a fifth of its staff in the wake of “worsening market conditions.” It’s the third developer to announce layoffs this week, and the fourth news of industry layoffs as a whole, and it’s only Wednesday.

The developer tweeted its announcement of the layoffs, writing: “Like many others in the games industry right now, Deck Nine has been affected by the game industry’s worsening market conditions. Today we made the difficult decision to lay off 20% of our staff. These people are amazing, talented, and awesome developers. They have made a huge impact during their time at Deck Nine Games and we did not take this decision lightly. Please hire these people if you can, they’re amazing.”

Eurogamer posits that the percentage equates to around 30 Deck Nine employees losing their job. That’s roughly the same amount of people it cut in May 2023, though Game Developer reported that the studio failed to provide a reason behind the layoffs.

The news came mere hours after Sony Interactive Entertainment CEO Jim Ryan announced that the company would be cutting 900 employees, just days before Ryan is set to step down from his role. Both these layoffs were preceded by Supermassive Games revealing that 150 roles were “at risk” of being let go at the beginning of this week. Elsewhere in the industry, esports giant ESL Faceit Group yesterday announced it would be laying off around 15% of its global workforce to “support EFG’s sustainable growth ambitions and profitability.”

We’re only two months into 2024 and the industry is already creeping towards surpassing the astonishingly high number of reported layoffs that took place last year. Website Game Industry Layoffs estimates that around 10,500 industry jobs were cut in 2023, and this year is already sitting at over 7,000. PC Gamer’s own estimations lie at around 11,250 people last year, with our chart showing the growing intensity of these layoffs painting a worrisome picture for the future of the industry.

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