Riot Games, renowned for popular titles such as “League of Legends,” revealed plans on Monday to lay off 530 employees, constituting approximately 11% of its global workforce. CEO Dylan Jadeja conveyed the news in a blog post, emphasizing that teams not directly engaged in game development would bear the brunt of the layoffs.
Riot Games Addresses Challenges
The digital gaming industry grapples with challenges as audiences hesitate to purchase expensive titles or stick to fewer games amid high inflation. A parallel trend occurred last year when Electronic Arts Inc. slashed 6% of its staff and downsized office space.
In his letter, Jadeja explained,
“We lack a sharp enough focus as a company, and we have too many things underway. Some of the significant investments we’ve made aren’t yielding the expected returns. Our costs have grown to an unsustainable point.”
The layoffs will enable Riot to concentrate on its live games portfolio, featuring titles like “League of Legends,” “Valorant,” “Teamfight Tactics,” and “Wild Rift.” Jadeja and co-founder Marc Merrill highlighted this in a separate blog post.
“We take pride in our collective achievements in bringing these stories to life, but it’s time to refocus our efforts on the ambitious projects currently underway internally at Riot,”
Riot Games will pause new game development under “Riot Forge” and trim staff and features in “Legends of Runeterra.” Tencent, acquiring a majority stake in Riot Games in 2011, also holds a stake in U.S. video game developer Epic Games.
Riot Games Job Cuts Amid Tech Industry Layoffs
Chinese tech company Tencent owns Riot Games, recognized for its popular esports-focused franchises. In recent years, Riot expanded into the entertainment space with its Netflix show, Arcane. Headquartered in Los Angeles, Riot Games, boasting over 4,500 employees, announced job cuts.
These cuts coincide with layoffs at major tech companies like Google and Amazon, extending across various divisions. Over the past year, notable developers, including ByteDance, Niantic, Epic Games, and Ubisoft, downsized their gaming divisions, leading to widespread job cuts. Analysts anticipate further layoffs in the tech sector, with an estimated 7,500 positions eliminated since the start of the year.