Valve has laid off 13 permanent staff and "a portion" on contractor agreements from its VR team.
News surfaced when former Valve employee Nat Brown announced yesterday, March 7th, that he had been let go from the company on February 7th. He’d been at Valve since September 2015.
ohai 🙂 so as of 7 Feb I'm no longer doing VR at Valve – if I left your question unanswered or your bug unfixed, DM or firstname.lastname@example.org – happy to help connect you with good folks still there! kthxbye!
— Nat Brown (@natbro) March 7, 2019
"Last month, 13 full-time employees were let go and a portion of our contractor agreements were terminated," Valve told Variety in a brief statement. "It’s an unfortunate part of business, but does not represent any major changes at the company. We thank those affected for their contribution and wish them well in future endeavors."
These latest layoffs sadly come on the back of several other closures and cutbacks we’ve seen across studios and media in recent months. Earlier this week, Techland shuttered Polish publishing and distribution division and last week, Brighton-based That’s You! developer Wish Studios closed. Digital retailer GOG laid off "a dozen" positions, purported to be around 10 per cent of its workforce and only a month after reportedly laying off an "undisclosed number" of staff from its American San Mateo studio, Iron Tiger Studios, South Korean online game publisherNCSoft has announced it will be making "staff reductions" at Guild Wars 2 developer, ArenaNet, too. Finnish studio Next Games recently announced it is laying off 26 staff after it reviewed "the cost structure of the company’s operations", and Activision recently laid off 8 per cent of its staff – 775 people.
Other closures include AER Memories of Old developer, Forgotten Key, Islands of Nyne: Battle Royale developer, Define Human Studios, Daybreak, Starbreeze, Bandai Namco Vancouver, and Trion Worlds, best known for its MMO games. Telltale Games laid off the majority of its staff in a ‘majority studio closure’ back in September. The media too has been affected, with the shuttering of leading strategy guides publisher Prima Games and Future’s GamesMaster and games™ magazines.