The developer of Jurassic World Alive and Cookie Jam has laid off 200 employees

The developer of Jurassic World Alive and Cookie Jam has laid off 200 employees ...

Jam City, the publisher of Jurassic World Alive and Harry Potter: Hogwarts Mystery, laid off 17% of employees on Thursday. Ludia, the subsidiary of Jam City, was acquired by Ludia in Montreal, famous for creating original and licensed games, in 2021.

On Thursday, about 200 workers were laid off between Jam City and Ludia, according to Polygon. Ten affected Ludia employees and three current employees said they were either on leave or vacation when they were laid off, first finding out from other coworkers, then realizing they had lost access to their associated accounts.

According to a recording of the call obtained by Polygon, Ludia employees who were not laid off were notified first at a large gathering, where employees were instructed not to inform others. Later, human resources began pulling the affected individuals into separate meetings. At least one worker told Polygon they were losing access to their various work accounts while they were still waiting for their scheduled meeting time. Other confused employees began posing questions in public Slack rooms.

The majority of staff said they were surprised by the layoffs, noting they had been promised otherwise that it would not happen again, and that the acquisition of Jam City would allow Ludia to continue to do what it already does. People are very irritated, according to one current employee.

According to VentureBeat, Jam City purchased Ludia for $165 million in September 2021 after securing $350 million in funding from South Korean game company Netmarble, Marvel Realm of Champions developer Kabam, and others. Thursday's layoff, however, is the largest of all.

Polygon was informed by a Jam City spokesperson that the decision was made in light of the world's economic turmoil and its implications for the gaming industry.

Jam City has made the difficult decision to reduce the size of our team by about 17 percent in response to the challenging economic environment. This also follows a larger restructuring we recently completed to align our development teams into areas that focus on subject-matter expertise to maximize performance.

According to Jam City's cofounders, employees were given severance packages that increased in value as they worked for the company, according to the group. Other support for those who were laid off also was included in an email to employees sent Thursday afternoon. DeWolfe and Yguado said the company would extend healthcare benefits to those who were impacted.

Although we've strengthened our business and games portfolio with fantastic teams and titles such as Disney Emoji Blitz, Bingo Pop, and Jurassic World Alive, we've also absorbed a number of redundant roles throughout the company.

Jam City's upcoming mobile game HGTV My Design, which had been in development for over three years, has also been canceled.

Jam City was founded in 2010 by MySpace cofounders DeWolfe, Colin Digiaro, and 20th Century Fox executive Yguado. The company announced its next game, which is called Champions Ascension, and will be built on the blockchain in May. The 7,622 players have been speculated on by Polygon that Jam City's all-in approach to blockchain gaming may have influenced the layoffs.

Ludia, a game show company founded in 2007, started by developing licensed titles such as The Price Is Right and other game show brands, and expanded into other titles such as The Bachelor: The Videogame and Jurassic World Alive.

Jam City stated that it would purchase Ludia and go public through a special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) in May 2021, according to Venture Beat. However, Jam City canceled that intention months later in July 2021 due to current market conditions. Ludia ended up purchasing Ludia in September 2021 in the $165 million agreement, but did not go public with the merged company.

One employee said that the issue with a lot of game development is that we have so much nondisclosure. It's difficult for these things to get out without feeling like you're at danger. If you're able to inform people that this is happening, it's usually just business as usual. In a city such as Montreal, where there is such a large number of studios, it can be devastating.

Update (Aug. 5): This story has been updated to include additional information and a new email from Jam City co-founders Chris DeWolfe and Joshua Yguado.