THQ confirmed that 30 people from Volition and Kaos Studios no longer have jobs.
Volition, based in Champaign, Ill, is known for the Red Faction and Saints Row series of games. 16 people from Volition - out of the 200 employed in total there - were asked to leave, while 17 staff from Kaos Studies were let go effective March 29th. Homefront released just last month to generally decent sales, but the numbers apparently weren't enough to keep the company from downsizing. I'm glad that THQ has made it clear that it will try to provide for the departing employees as much as possible.
"Kaos has a dedicated team in place that will continue to support Homefront with an ongoing, robust DLC and content plan, as well as working on pre-production for future games," a statement from THQ read. "We have made changes to ensure that the team size aligns to the current stages of internal product development."
As for Volition, THQ made clear the layoffs would not affect any ongoing game development there, such as Guillermo del Toro's Insane. "Steps are being taken to ensure team members affected by the transition are treated with appropriate concern," stated THQ. "The changes are not expected to affect any current or future titles in development with Volition."
Is there something in the air today? Just today, I've heard that Mega Man Universe and The Agency have been cancelled, with Sony Online laying off 205 people. Now THQ is also getting rid of people. I know the hiring and firing cycle of game development is the cause, but that doesn't make it suck less for the people who no longer have the dream job of designing videogames.
So much for the videogame industry being recession-proof.