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H1Z1 developers Daybreak layoff yet more employees

H1Z1 and PlanetSide 2 developers Daybreak Game Company went through another round of layoffs yesterday, though the number of employees affected is unknown. This is the third wave since the beginning of 2018.

Daybreak confirmed the layoffs to Gamasutra, saying:

“We are taking steps to improve our business and to support our long-term vision for the existing franchises and development of new games. This will include a realignment of the company into separate franchise teams, which will allow us to highlight their expertise, better showcase the games they work on, and ultimately provide tailored experiences for our players. Unfortunately, some employees were impacted by this effort, and we’re doing what we can to support them during this challenging time.”

Daybreak also let staff go in December of last year, and April before that. Their statements then were almost exactly the same: “We are optimising our structure to ensure we best position ourselves for continued success in the years to come.”

The company launched PlanetSide Arena into early access a few weeks back. It’s a PlanetSide 2 spinoff that Brendy and Sin thought was pleasantly chaotic, if in need of some more work. But the instability suggested by these repeated layoffs can also be inferred from some of their other games. The PvE survival game Just Survive, which confusingly was originally known as H1Z1 before that name was nabbed by what is now a battle royale shooter, was shuttered a year ago. Before that, EverQuest Landmark was closed down, and development on EverQuest Next ceased.

Here’s hoping the affected employees can land on their feet. And that the game industry unionises.

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Jay Castello

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Jay writes about video games, falls down endless internet rabbit holes, and takes a lot of pictures of flowers.

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