Earlier this week, THQ cut its quarterly sales forecast by a one-quarter, blaming the newly anticipated shortfall on a weaker-than-expected retail performance from the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions of its uDraw gaming tablet peripheral. The fallout from that surfaced today, as THQ laid off dozens of employees from its Agoura Hills, California-based Play THQ team.
"Due to weaker than expected sales of the uDraw Game Tablet, we are taking a difficult but important step to reduce the number of employees that supported this brand," a THQ representative told GameSpot. "Thirty people will be leaving the company and business unit leader Martin Good will also be leaving to pursue new opportunities outside the company.
"This action will allow us to reduce costs, increase efficiency and increase the focus of our organization. WWE '12 and Saints Row: The Third are two of the top games this holiday season and we also have another huge hit coming up in February with the launch of UFC 3. We want to make sure that we are focused on maximizing the sales and profitability of these titles, as well as the broader pipeline of titles that matter most to our future."
The Wii version of the uDraw Game Tablet quickly exceeded THQ's sales expectations when it launched in November 2010, shipping 1.7 million units in the publisher's fiscal year and prompting plans for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions. The tablet came packed in with the uDraw Studio art utility and was released alongside two compatible $30 titles: Pictionary and Dood's Big Adventure.