Civilization V dev sheds 20 staffers

Take-Two confirms layoffs at Sid Meier-led Firaxis studio but says upcoming strategy game, Civilization Network, not impacted.

Take-Two Interactive initiated a company-wide reorganization in February, but the publisher was adamant in saying that its efforts would not result in headcount reductions at its stable of studios. Unfortunately, layoffs have come anyway for at least one of Take-Two's developers, as the publisher confirmed for GameSpot today that it has reduced headcount at Sid Meier's Firaxis studio by about 20 staffers.

Firaxis continues to build away on Civilization V.

"I can confirm that Firaxis has realigned its development resources in order to streamline its development process, reduce costs, and maximize the overall performance of the studio," Take-Two global PR director Markus Wilding said in a statement. "This will result in the elimination of approximately 20 positions."

Acquired by Take-Two in 2005, Firaxis is perhaps best known for its turn-based strategy franchise Civilization. The studio's most recent installment, Civilization V, is slated to arrive for the PC on September 21. Already the game has garnered positive buzz, having picked up two nominations from the E3 Game Critics Awards and winning Best Strategy Game at the show.

Firaxis will also be bringing the Civilization franchise to Facebook in 2010. A multiplayer-centric installment, the Civilization Network sees Facebook friends sharing technology and coordinating strategy in battles. Players' friends will be able to participate in elections and help decide resource management, as well as assist in espionage or the construction of Wonders of the World.

As part of Take-Two's statement today, the publisher affirmed that neither project will be impeded by the recent round of layoffs. "These reductions will not impact Firaxis' ability to create and deliver AAA titles, including its forthcoming Sid Meier's Civilization V and Sid Meier's Civilization Network for Facebook," Wilding said.

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78 comments
tkomess
tkomess

Damn! When it's out ?!?!?! Holy Crapy Moly SEPTEMBER!!! O_0 I can't hold my breath for that long :'(

IowOparPiykvar
IowOparPiykvar

So... where do I sign up for this group? lol Wait... it's a Roman trick. Ceaser wants to distract me so I don't see that army he is building up... *manic laughter*

JDWolfie
JDWolfie

She didn't catch him. Haha.

JDWolfie
JDWolfie

That's too many erections!

JDWolfie
JDWolfie

I like that poster in the back, "Nope."

Urworstnhtmare
Urworstnhtmare

@Rottenwood: Agreed. Honesty is really a dying art. I just wish they had told them straight up instead of making it sound as if they were letting down the team or some other nonsense...

Australians
Australians

listening to their first padcast i feel bad for the guys and gals who got fired hopefully they can get transferred over to 2k

DeathsHead419
DeathsHead419

I just hope this doesn't cut the quality of the final product. Also, why the hate for people who want Civ on consoles? Come on, the first game was realsed on the SNES and Civ II was on the playstation meaning this would hardly be unprecidented. Besides, isn't the real point not on what platform it's played, but how many hapless bastards fall to the enevitable doom of our Empire's tanks?

XIntoTheBlue
XIntoTheBlue

Nothing like generic PR to justify why they are cutting 20 employees. Sucks for those who are getting laid off. Sucks for Civ V too since the workload normally allocated to those 20 employees will be shoved onto the plates of the other employees. Most likely will result in cutting corners to meet deadlines.

zaprct
zaprct

@Rottenwood I agree. Myself and over 80 of my colleagues have just been told that our jobs are being outsourced overseas, and the one thing I appreciated was their straightforward honesty in explaining that it's simply because they can't afford us. None of this BS about 'maximising performance', what a crock! These poor guys are basically being layed off and the explanation this guy is giving makes it sound as though the company will actually run better without them.

N0tYrBeezin
N0tYrBeezin

PC game being addiction possible? Just go ask the near 12 million WoW subscribers. Have they been living in another Galaxy for the past decades?

Triton
Triton

The game will still be great, just sounds like more profit for the fat cats.

Vojtass
Vojtass

@ KC_Hokie I guess you know nothing about strategy games, platforms and gamers.

steve4123456789
steve4123456789

Wait there now Reiken32 just hold your horses, even Civilization 2 was on console (ps1) Mayby even Civilization 1 on SNES am not sure, and poeple loved them, just look at civilization revolution, that was a great hit on consoles.

Reiken37
Reiken37

I don't understand the 5 or 6 people who click on this article, not to read it or because they care about the dev or games they make, but to troll and make everything they like look worse. Civ V would fail on consoles, just like any rts would. And more like 15% increase in sales, the PC crowd is much larger then you think, just because MW2 wasn't done well for PC doesn't mean that nothing is. It just means that Activision is a bad company with an idiot sitting on top.

KC_Hokie
KC_Hokie

They should have planned a console release of Civ V. Then they wouldn't have had to fire those 20 people due to the expected 40%+ increase in sales.

Rottenwood
Rottenwood

Trying to figure out how firing 20 people will "maximize performance." Were they saboteurs or something? brilhasti is right; these announcements would be less offensive if they eliminated the corporate double-speak and just said "we fired dudes to save money." At least you could admire the honesty, if not the actions.

brilhasti
brilhasti

"...has realigned its development resources in order to streamline its development process, reduce costs, and maximize the overall performance". That's some good, generic spin right there. Without bias that reads simply "We cut staff and costs" "the publisher affirmed that neither project will be impeded" ....just like they said there wouldn't be layoffs, but then there were?

guythatsnipes
guythatsnipes

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

Habast
Habast

lol that's the best trailer ever.

burn6
burn6

No more turns, No more turns, No more turns!!! yep I might as well get myself in the program

Abberon
Abberon

I'm a little at a loss as to why you would be shedding staffers for a game that's guaranteed to be a success. The game will sell millions of copies likely regardless of what you do so why would you shed staff on something that's probably going to need a fair bit of support and updating? Weird.

the_mitch28
the_mitch28

@ballplayers-2-3 Actually no they made a similar trailer for Civ IV which came out a long time before MW2 or its map pack, that's why in the trailer he says "so once again we must ask the question" but nice try anyway.

MacenKrace
MacenKrace

Civ IV was cool. I played it a lot, but when I got to the Industrial era... it just didn't attract me anyone as it used to. They should try to make the game longer and try adding more old medieval campains, like Hannibal, Julius Caezar and many many more.

ballplayers-2-3
ballplayers-2-3

they r trying to copy the modern warfare "mapathy" commercial which is much more funnier.............. this is not funny

gbrading
gbrading moderator

I expect Sid Meier himself is rather upset by this. It's a tough world out there.

TerrorRizzing
TerrorRizzing

well civ 5 is almost done and already looking stellar... but the next game...

cyberdreamer
cyberdreamer

This is what happened with the CnC 4 guys too.......and we all know how the game came out.

jaybeeang
jaybeeang

I hope this doesn't affect the game in any way. I'm going to hate them forever if it does.

uberjannie
uberjannie

Man, if Civ V gets released choppy and unfinished because of this,I am going to be pissed!

keren_man
keren_man

Hope it's not affecting the game

Darkreaper_1
Darkreaper_1

Understandable considering the current climate and the need for every company to save money. Unfortunately staff wages are a big chunk of companies expenses.

paleogamer
paleogamer

I'll be offended too if they deemed my position in game making not important.

DeadReckoning19
DeadReckoning19

More than likely, there was a just reason for the lay-offs. Let's face it guys, in any job you have, there is going to be both slackers and people who just aren't up to snuff. I am not saying this is the case in this particular incident, but saying "We fired these men/women because we didn't need them and wasn't worth their paycheck" is just as viable as saying "We fired them because the Big Wigs needed a bonus." Fact is, how many names of developers do you actually *know*. If they do something famous, sure you know it. John Carmack as an example. But do you know any names off the last great game you played? I mean, honestly, I don't.

evil_angel74
evil_angel74

@Gelugon_baat Lol even if we did beat you in terms of time, I think you bet us in terms of content. Nice. I agree though, this will be one of the only games that I won't search for discounts for. I want Sid to get all the money he can from this to make some kickass expansions.

akhauskinz
akhauskinz

GameSpot doesn't cover when 20 people get hired. There was probably a sound reason for the lay-offs, as unfortunate as it is.

jrabbit99
jrabbit99

I hope everyone finds new jobs, its rough in this economy

Shardz7
Shardz7

Let's go ahead and fire more workers so that the corporates can get their second bonus checks for the year! Yay! More corporate greed on the rise and it ain't the ones in the suits who are suffering yet again.

Decessus
Decessus

@tentaculat You may be right. It's possible that those people got fired simply because upper management wanted to make more money. It certainly wouldn't be the first time something like that happened.But, it's also true that corporations are not always as efficient as they should be. Just like a huge government, there can be a lot of bureaucracy that makes things getting done a lot more difficult than it really needs to be.Without further information, it's impossible to say what the motivation for these firings were.

MrUntouchable18
MrUntouchable18

Just what we need more job loss jeez I feel so bad for them.

Vari3ty
Vari3ty

Damn... Firaxis is my favorite developer... I absolutely love the Civilization series. I wish publishers wouldn't wait until developers are almost finished with their projects and then decide to fire them. Best of luck to those who lost their jobs - I'm sure your hard work is part of the reason Civilization is so great.

missonrs
missonrs

ouch that's messed up. These people work hard and they end up getting laid off for their hard work. Sorry to those who are out of a job now :(

adecoy95
adecoy95

its sad to hear game companys that are in the habit of firing staff after they finish a difficult and large project. its kindof a thanks for your hard work, get the hell out!

Tauu
Tauu

Hey Sid Meier, when are you gonna make Railroad Tycoon 4?

glssr60
glssr60

I love the Civ series but anybody who doesn't think it's likely to end at some point, whether it's Civ V or Civ VII...you're kidding yourself....all good things must come to an end....unless of course you're Sly Stallone...always room for one more Rocky movie I guess.

UnknownElement4
UnknownElement4

Still sad though that people are losing their jobs here.