Rock Band and Dance Central developer Harmonix has laid off "a small number" of employees today.
Job losses are sad news at any time of the year, but layoffs close to the holidays hit just a little bit harder. Rock Band developer Harmonix has laid off some employees today. A spokesperson for the developer told Joystiq, "We can confirm that a small number of Harmonix employees were let go today. This decision was made due to shifting staffing priorities for Harmonix's multiple future projects." Rock Band sound designer Dan Crislip was among those laid off today.
Harmonix announced that ten employees had been let go in April for similar reasons. The developer ended its DLC release schedule for Rock Band on April 2. The last song added to the library was Don Mclean's American Pie. Expiring licence agreements on the existing Rock Band library have resulted in some songs being removed from the Rock Band store. While Harmonix is not currently developing another Rock Band title, CEO Alex Rigopulos doesn't consider the series closed. Rigopulos told VentureBeat in June, "[W]e don't view Rock Band as something that's being left behind. It's something we'll return to at the right point in time and reimagine it as appropriate for its time." No new entries in Harmonix's other successful series, Dance Central, are expected at this time. Harmonix is currently developing Fantasia: Music Evolved with publisher Disney Interactive Studios. Fantasia: Music Evolved will be released for Xbox One and Xbox 360 in 2014.
We here at The Escapist hope all those affected by the cuts land on their feet again soon.