Tomb Raider, Perfect Dark, and Marvel’s Avengers developer Crystal Dynamics has been hit with a round of layoffs, making it the latest Embracer Group-owned company to suffer similar losses (via Game Developer).
Some now-former members of the Crystal Dynamics team first posted about the layoffs on social media. Nick Edwards, who previously served as senior brand manager for the developer, was one of the individuals affected. Edwards’ post says that he and “a number of talented brand/marketing folks at Crystal are impacted.” Senior community & social media manager Neha Nair, meanwhile, was let go after three-and-a-half years at the company. Crystal Dynamics also published an X post addressing the layoffs, saying, “Crystal Dynamics made the difficult decision to part ways with 9 Brand/Marketing and 1 IT employee today due to an internal restructuring to align the studio with our current business needs.”
— Crystal Dynamics (@CrystalDynamics) September 20, 2023
“Sadly I’ve joined the ranks of those impacted by the 2023 gaming workforce reductions,” former Crystal Dynamics communications director Adam Kahn said in a LinkedIn post. “I loved Crystal Dynamics and wish them the best! Let me know if you know of anyone looking for a seasoned gaming PR vet!”
Embracer-owned entities have been subjected to a barrage of layoffs and studio shutdowns throughout the last year. Perhaps the most notorious change saw Saints Row developer Volition closing its doors in August. Not to be understated, however, is the closure of Lara Croft Go developer Onoma last November. Embracer warned of efforts to restructure in June 2023, and at the time, Crystal Dynamics assured fans that new Tomb Raider and Perfect Dark games would not be affected. Unfortunately, it seems the studio was still unable to escape the company-wide changes.
Embracer, which acquired the rights to the entire The Lords of the Rings franchise last year, has continued to make major changes to the lives of those who work under its wide umbrella, and it’s possible that those changes won’t end with the Crystal Dynamics layoffs. Earlier this month, a report suggesting that the company was interested in selling Borderlands developer Gearbox Software emerged. Nothing official about a potential sale has been stated, but with Embracer so clearly faced with financial woes, another serious alteration to its lineup such as this would be anything but a surprise. If the company does move to let more of its workforce go or sell Gearbox, you can be sure to read about it here.