5% of EA Workforce Told It’s “Game Over” for Their Position

olivia_Brown / shutterstock.com
olivia_Brown / shutterstock.com

Cuts to staffing in the arts and entertainment categories have become monumental as AI advances faster and faster. With the programs creating more realistic looks and movements than humans have been able to achieve on their own in animation, they are likely to continue.

Following Microsoft slashing 1,900 jobs as of January following their purchase of Activision Blizzard, Sony’s February 27th cut of 900 employees, or 8%, and EA is cutting 5% of their own 13,400. This latest 670-position downsizing is indicative of an industry that is undergoing extensive changes in a very short timeline.

In a memo to employees, EA CEO Andrew Wilson explained the company is “streamlining our company operations to deliver deeper, more connected experiences for fans everywhere…We are continuing to optimize our global real estate footprint to best support our business. We are also sunsetting games and moving away from development of future licensed IP that we do not believe will be successful in our changing industry.” As part of that change Wilson also said, they will home in on its “biggest opportunities — including our owned IP, sports, and massive online communities.”

Masterminds behind mega-gaming franchises Apex Legends, Battlefield, EA Sports FC, Madden NFL, and The Sims, EA announced in January that they would be focusing on improving these offerings. Doing so with a smaller crew leaves the games feeling less “authentic” to many who have already played some early AI offerings.

These beta testers have reported that the lack of standard bugs like improper dimensions and poorly formed hands leaves a lot to be desired. However, they cautioned that the odd shapes and dimensions on things like hands are a problem, but the AI engines have learned that they should have five fingers and not six.