When your studio is purchased by a self-styled “investment management” firm, there’s always a pretty strong chance the acquisition will be followed by some slashing and burning. That appears to be the case with Daybreak (formerly) SOE, following last week’s purchase by Columbus Nova.
Kotaku has both the insider word and confirmation statement (which appears to have been written by a business jargon robot) from Daybreak. It’s not clear precisely how many people have been laid off from the studio’s San Diego and Austin locations, but they include EverQuest veteran and figurehead David Georgeson.
Georgeson confirmed that news from his personal twitter account.
Yeah, I'm sorry folks but it's true. LM, eqn, eq and eqii are no longer guided by moi. Other dreamers will steer now.
— David Georgeson (@DaveGeorgeson) February 11, 2015
If you have the stomach for the sort of cowardly management jargon that phrases “putting people out of work” as “alignment of resources,” then here’s what Daybreak has to say about today’s actions:
As part of a strategic decision to rationalize the business, Daybreak Game Company announced today that it will eliminate positions in both its San Diego and Austin studios. This alignment of resources better positions the newly independent studio for future growth opportunities and developments, including delivering on its legacy of making top online games and establishing a solid foundation for future multi-platform success. These reductions will not affect the operation of current games and the company will continue on its mission to partner with its player community to drive the future and push the boundaries of online gaming.
Quite how they can say that laying a bunch of people off will “not affect the operation of current games” with a straight face is open to question. Morale tends to take a pretty major hit when your colleagues start being removed, after all.