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Published: January 20, 2023

Written by: Isabella Aslam

  • Microsoft announces it’s laying off 10 000 employees by the end of March
  • Halo developers 343 Industries have already been heavily hit
  • Negative responses to Microsoft’s decision were not late

Microsoft announces unprecedented layoffs that will negatively impact the development of Halo and Halo esports.

Microsoft Announces Huge Layoffs

Yesterday, Microsoft announced a huge wave of employee layoffs that hit the corporation’s human resources, gaming, and esports divisions the hardest. Microsoft announced that it plans to release upwards of 10 000 employees by the end of march. According to the company, the reason for this decision is to reduce costs amid a broader economic slowdown that has hit many other corporations, like Amazon and Riot Games. 

Microsoft’s decision has impacted Xbox and Bethesda, both being owned by Microsoft, very hard. According to Bloomberg reporter Jason Schreier, the scale of the layoffs is not yet clear, and a Microsoft spokesperson declined to comment on how many employees of the gaming division were laid off. 

It’s important to note that Halo Esports have also been hit hard by Microsoft’s recent decision. Matt Kline, Program Manager – Halo Esports, announced on his Twitter profile that he is no longer a part of 343 Industries. He thanked everyone he’s worked with to produce a world-class esports program and said he is ready for the next chapter.

Employees and Public Respond

Microsoft’s decision was, naturally, not taken well by both employees and Halo fans. Many state that this will negatively impact Halo Infinite, as the game has had a rough existence this past year. “Oh yes, this is EXACTLY what halo needs,” one commenter sarcastically responds to the news on Twitter.

“So now we truly have a trilogy of first entries of abandoned trilogies – Halo 4, 5, and Infinite are all the first act of their own stories, never to be continued. The only other franchise I can think of that’s managed that is the Terminator films,” reads one comment under the subreddit post discussing the situation

Negative responses from the game developers themselves were not late either. Patrick Wren, a Halo developer, wrote that the layoffs shouldn’t have hit the Halo team so hard, blaming the leadership for any inefficiencies that came up during the development of Halo Infinite. 

“The people I worked every day with were passionate about Halo and wanted to make something great for the fans. They helped push for a better Halo and got laid off for it,” Wren additionally wrote. “Devs still there are working hard on that dream. Look at Forge. Be kind to them during this awful time.”

It’s still unknown who else will be released, but it’s obvious Microsoft’s decision will have negative consequences on the development of Halo in the future.

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