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Destiny 2: The Final Shape Developer Bungie PlayStation Layoffs Laid Off Employees

Destiny 2 Dev Bungie Hit With Layoffs, Just 15 Months After PlayStation Acquisition

by Wesley LeBlanc on Oct 30, 2023 at 01:07 PM

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Update, 11/01/23:

IGN and Bloomberg have learned new information about the layoffs that occurred at Destiny 2 maker Bungie this week, including that roughly 100 employees were laid off from the company. As for why, IGN's sources report that during an employee meeting after the layoffs, Bungie CEO Pete Parsons told staff that the layoffs were due to the underperformance of Destiny 2 over the last year as well as "lower-than-expected preorders" for the upcoming expansion, The Final Shape. 

Employees were reportedly told that Destiny 2 player sentiment had reached an all-time-low and IGN's sources say employees at the studio have attempted to discuss this with Bungie leadership, asking to make the necessary changes, presumably to get player sentiment back up. 

Bloomberg reports that roughly 8% of "Bungie's game unit" staff were laid off due to Destiny play time hitting a low, and IGN's sources say roughly 100 people were laid off. Bloomberg also reports that sales at Bungie are running 45% below projections. 

And finally, IGN's own sources confirm information released by Bloomberg earlier this week stating The Final Shape expansion for Destiny 2 has been internally delayed from its original February 2024 release date to June. Plus, the publication reports that Marathon, which Bungie revealed earlier this year as a multiplayer extraction shooter, has been delayed to 2025.

[Sources: IGN, Bloomberg]

The original story and other updates continue below...


Update, 10/31/23:

Bungie has yet to reveal how many employees it laid off yesterday and it hasn't given an official reason why either. However, as more and more former employees have shared details about the layoffs, we continue to learn who else was affected. It's how we know famed Destiny 2 composer, Michael Salvatori, who also worked as a co-composer alongside Martin O'Donnell on games like Halo: Combat Evolved, Halo 2, Halo 3, and more, was either laid off or voluntarily left amidst the studio layoffs. 

It's currently unclear because, as noted by VideoGamesChronicle, Destiny 2 community animator Carson Reed claims he was laid off, according to their own internal sources, but Windows Central's Jez Cordon says he's heard Salvatori may have retired voluntarily. 

Nonetheless, Destiny Bulletin on Twitter noticed that on Salvatori's website, it no longer features the two paragraphs where he describes his past and current work. Instead, it says "GONE FISHIN' :)" 

Elsewhere in the news of Bungie's layoffs, studio CEO Pete Parsons tweeted about the events, which is the first official address from the Destiny 2 maker. "Today is a sad day at Bungie as we say goodbye to colleagues who have all made a significant impact on our studio," he writes in a tweet. "What these exceptional individuals have contributed to our games and Bungie culture has been enormous and will continue to be a part of Bungie long into the future."  

The original story continues below...


Original story, 10/30/23:

Destiny 2 developer Bungie, which was acquired by PlayStation last year for $3.6 billion, is the latest game maker to be hit with layoffs in 2023. Various former Bungie employees announced on Twitter today they had been laid off, and Bloomberg has confirmed with its sources that an undisclosed number of staff were laid off today. 

Bloomberg reports that Bungie CEO Pete Parsons told staffers they'd be "hearing some news today" and that following it, there would be a team meeting later today to "discuss today's events." 

As for why employees were laid off, that remains unclear, especially as the company is set to release a massive Destiny 2 expansion – The Final Shape – that's set to end the decade-long saga that began in the first Destiny game. Bloomberg states that its sources say The Final Shape has been delayed internally to June 2024, months after its previously announced February 27, 2024 release date

Game Informer has reached out to PlayStation and will update this story if it learns more. 

In January of 2022, Sony announced it was acquiring Bungie for $3.6 billion; it completed the purchase in July of 2022. These layoffs come less than two years after the purchase. 

These Bungie layoffs join an unfortunately ever-growing list of layoffs affecting the studios behind games released in 2023, which by all accounts, is one of the best years in gaming in terms of releases. In January, Microsoft laid off 10,000 employees amidst its ongoing $69 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard, which it completed earlier this month

In August, Striking Distance Studios, the team behind last year's The Callisto Protocol, laid off more than 30 employees, and that same month, Mass Effect and Dragon Age developer BioWare laid off 50 employees, including long-time studio veterans. The following month, in September, Immortals of Aveum developer Ascendant Studios laid off roughly 45% of its staff

Just this month, The Last of Us developer Naughty Dog has laid off at least 25 employees, and Telltale Games has gone through layoffs as well, although an actual number of laid-off employees has not yet been revealed.  And last week, Dreams developer Media Molecule laid off 20 employees

The hearts of the Game Informer staff are with everyone affected by these layoffs and those still at the studio. 

[Source: Bloomberg]


Editor's Note: This story and headline has been updated to clarify that Michael Salvatori was either laid off or voluntarily left the company. 

Products In This Article

Destiny 2: The Final Shapecover

Destiny 2: The Final Shape

Platform:
PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X/S, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC
Release Date: