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It appears the ghost of layoffs from last year has followed video game workers into 2024. Just three days into the new year, VR games maker Archiact has announced that it had let go of an undisclosed number of employees. The roles affected by the layoff include animation, art, audio, engineering, game design, IT, narrative, production, and quality assurance.

Archiact Lays Off Undisclosed Number Of Employees 3 Days Into The New Year

“We are deeply saddened to share that we had to say goodbye to a number of talented colleagues this week,” the studio announced through a post shared on X. “It was not a decision we took lightly, and we are working with these individuals to offset this difficult transition as much as possible.”

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Archiact’s LinkedIn profile shows that the company’s employee size ranges from 51 to 200. An insight on LinkedIn also showed that the company’s headcount had dropped by 27% in the last 6 months. Unlike some of the other announced layoffs, Archiact is doing something commendable for the affected employees.

“If you are currently hiring for any of the following disciplines, please reach out to us directly so we can share the information with our former colleagues,” Archiact wrote in the layoff announcement.

Archiact Lays Off Undisclosed Number Of Employees 3 Days Into The New Year

The company is conducting what it called reverse recruiting. What this simply means is that Archiact has put out a message to other companies who may have employment spaces to offer them their ex-employees.

Archiact also put out an email address (infor@archiactvr.com) where those who may have open spaced can directly reach out to them and solicit for talents. They said they will pass any information received to the affected employees.

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This gesture was widely praised. For example, @AlexmChadwick wrote, “Never heard of the studio before but major credit going out of your way to secure them a job. It shows heart where lots of other companies fail to.”

Archiact Lays Off Undisclosed Number Of Employees 3 Days Into The New Year

Founded in 2013, Archiact is famous for being behind popular VR titles including Doom 3, Journey to Foundation, Freediver, Marvel Dimension of Heroes, and Evasion. The company promotes itself as “the largest independent VR studios, focused on creating immersive worlds and rich stories”.

Ex- Archiact employees have shared their views on the layoff

Layoff suck! There is no mild way to put it. The video game industry may likely experience more layoffs this year owing to the rising AI adoption. It is a sad reality that the industry will have to deal with in the short haul. However, how the studio handles the layoff will, to a large extent, shape the tone of the impacted employees when they speak up on social media.

“Unfortunately, I was part of the layoffs at Archiact today and will be looking for roles as a games animator,” wrote Mathew Duncan who worked as an animator at Archiact VR. “I really enjoyed my time with the company and am grateful for all that I learned. Excited to see what comes next!”

Archiact Lays Off Undisclosed Number Of Employees 3 Days Into The New Year

According to unconfirmed sources, we learned that over two dozen employees were let go at Archiact. We counted just about that number of former employees who have either made a post about being laid off or updated their LinkedIn profiles to #OpenToWork. Below are some of the messages from former Archiact employees.

“I wanted to share some personal sad news,” wrote Mireille Vazquez, a 3D/2D artist. “Recently, my journey at ArchiactVR came to an end as part of a large series of layoffs that happened today at the company. Working at Archiact has been an incredible experience, and I am truly grateful for the opportunity to collaborate with such a talented and dedicated team.”

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Peter Boychuk, a lead writer and narrative director wrote, “Like many of my colleagues, I have been laid off by Archiact. I just led a team of three writers and five narrative designers in adapting Isaac Asimov’s brilliant Foundation novels into a branching narrative VR game, and now it’s time for something new.”

Archiact Lays Off Undisclosed Number Of Employees 3 Days Into The New Year

“Hi everyone, unfortunately, Archiact just had a pretty difficult layoff today and sadly I was one of the people affected,” wrote Czarina Ramos, a software engineer.

Johnny Rumeliotis, a 3D environment artist wrote, “Recently I was part of a large layoff that happened at Archiact. The time I had there was amazing. Had the blessing of working with great people and the experience was out of this world. So grateful to have had this opportunity.”

One thing that was hard to miss was how the ex-employees all had nice things to say about their former company. We have seen messy layoffs in recent times. Last year, laid-off BioWare employees sued their former employer, demanding a better severance package. The way Archiact has managed its layoffs needs to be emulated.


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