Sony Online Entertainment hit with layoffs

Everquest publisher cuts headcount by 35 following resource realignment; unclear which departments were hit.


Star Wars Galaxies: Starter Kit
Free Realms

A year ago this week, Sony Online Entertainment let 40 staffers go following the successful launch of the free-to-play Free Realms. One year later, the publisher and developer behind online PC titles Everquest, Star Wars Galaxies, and others cut just over 4 percent of its workforce.

DC Universe Online still scheduled for November.
DC Universe Online still scheduled for November.

SOE confirmed the layoffs with GameSpot and said the move was an attempt to "better align the company's resources." In total, 35 full-time SOE employees were let go, though it is unclear if the headcount reductions were focused on a particular development team, or spread out.

"In a move to better align the company's resources against areas of growth that meet consumer demand in today's online market, as well as improve operational efficiency, Sony Online Entertainment has eliminated just over 4 percent of its full-time workforce, equaling 35 people," Scott Gulbransen, Sr. Director Global PR & Corp. Communications told GameSpot. "The changes will better position SOE to deliver against its emphasis on developing games for a wider, more diverse audience and remaining a worldwide leader in online gaming."

SOE currently has multiple projects in the works for the PC and PlayStation 3, including The Agency, Magic: The Gathering - Tactics, Star Wars: The Clone Wars Adventures, and DC Universe Online, which is due out in early November.

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