Just Cause Developer Announces Layoffs and Studio Closures, Including One Office Open Less Than a Year

In a surprising turn of events, the video game industry witnesses yet another shakeup as Avalanche, the creators behind the popular Just Cause series, has announced significant operational changes. The developer is poised to shutter two of its five studios worldwide, resulting in the unfortunate layoff of 50 of its staff members. This reduction constitutes nine percent of Avalanche’s total work force, marking a significant contraction for the company.

The offices earmarked for closure are located in New York and Montreal, the latter of which had only been in operation for barely a year following a strategic expansion. The New York office has been part of Avalanche’s global presence since 2011, and the Montreal studio was a recent addition, opened with the acquisition of Monster Closet Games in October of the prior year. At the time, the expansion was heralded as a promising new chapter for Avalanche, signifying growth and the pursuit of new opportunities.

In an official statement released by Avalanche, the company described these closures as “exceptionally difficult decisions.” The narrative further elaborated that this move was deemed necessary to stabilize and sustain the future of the company. Although the decision was tough, the focus of Avalanche remains on the well-being of its employees during this transitional period. The company expressed its gratitude toward the departing staff for their dedication and contribution, assuring that the remaining team is committed to delivering outstanding gaming experiences for their audience.

The recent closures and layoffs at Avalanche are indicative of a broader trend of instability within the video game industry. An archive tracking layoffs within the sector highlights a troubling pattern, with over 10,000 individuals losing their jobs across various companies in the industry within this year alone. Prominent names such as Microsoft, Sony, and Square Enix have also navigated through layoffs, underlining a pervasive atmosphere of uncertainty that seems to be looming over the video game world. This distressing wave of layoffs raises important questions about the challenges facing the industry and the future of game development and publishing at large.

The closures of Avalanche’s studios underscore the volatile nature of the video game industry, revealing the harsh realities of managing game development in a rapidly changing market. As companies grapple with economic pressures and shifting consumer preferences, it is likely that the industry will continue to see transformations.

The gaming community, developers, and industry observers alike are keenly watching these developments, hoping for a stabilization that will allow for the continued creation and enjoyment of video games. In the meantime, the focus remains on supporting those affected by these changes, as the industry navigates through this uncertain period.

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