Blizzard sent over a press release announcing that approximately 600 employees will be let go on a global scale. The company determined this was necessary after conducting a review of its business based on current organizational needs. Approximately 90-percent of the affected employees will come from departments not related to game development.
"Constant evaluation of teams and processes is necessary for the long-term health of any business," states Mike Morhaime, CEO and co-founder of Blizzard Entertainment. "Over the last several years, we've grown our organization tremendously and made large investments in our infrastructure in order to better serve our global community."
"However, as Blizzard and the industry have evolved we've also had to make some difficult decisions in order to address the changing needs of our company," he adds. "Knowing that, it still does not make letting go of some of our team members any easier. We're grateful to have had the opportunity to work with the people impacted by today's announcement, we're proud of the contributions they made here at Blizzard, and we wish them well as they move forward."
The company states that the World of Warcraft development team will not be impacted by the layoffs, nor will the current development and publishing schedules be impacted. Specific release plans for Diablo 3 will be made in the near future while the studio continues to "drive aggressively" toward beta testing for World of Warcraft: Mists of Pandaria, Blizzard DOTA, and StarCraft 2: Heart of the Swarm.
"Blizzard also remains committed to maintaining its high standards of quality for customer service delivery," the company states in its press release. "In addition, Blizzard is still recruiting and looking to hire qualified developers for a number of open positions."
Further details concerning open positions at Blizzard are available at http://jobs.blizzard.com.