This week was a tough week for some game developers working for studios that have a Vancouver presence. Layoffs occurred at both Relic Entertainment and Kabam. Lots of people good people lost their jobs and many of them I’m proud to have worked with them before. Some of the people who were affected have decades of experience, so it didn’t matter if you were a junior or veteran.
In recent months, I’ve heard more about layoffs than I’ve heard about new studios or hiring blitzes. Companies are still hiring though. I just had two recruiters contact me last week about opportunities. The question is, are there enough jobs out there for everyone that has been laid off? I don’t know the answer to that.
As a veteran of several layoffs, I can tell you that the majority of the people who get laid off were not selected based on their ability or how well they did their jobs. In fact, I’d say most people did exactly what they were told, helped make the best games they could, and despite all of that, they lost their jobs. That’s the part that’s most unfair. I would guess that there were many software engineers who were laid off this week that are much better engineers than I am. Yet, I still have a job. It’s totally random, unfair, and inexplicable sometimes how things happen.
Many decent folks are looking for their next job right now and I hope everyone is going to be ok sooner than later.