If you’re a gamer, you probably heard recently about how Bungie laid off 8% of their staff and their revenue projects were wrong by about 45% for the year. This isn’t the first tech company laying off hundreds or thousands of employees at once, but how come? Well, greed. When a company asks their customers for way too much, way too often, while offering way too little, they will move on to something else.
In this article, let’s breakdown and list a couple of things Bungie did wrong, why is it wrong, and how companies could do better, if their CEOs aren’t too out of touch to still learn.
Too little Offer, Too much asking
Bungie is a multi billion dollar company. They’re behind massive game titles, such as Halo and Destiny, have millions of players across all platforms and decades of experience in the game industry. With so much in their favor, how come this happened? Well, first, Destiny and Halo are basically the only two games franchises they still work on as of lately.
Let’s start with Halo: Latest installment in the series is Halo Infinite. The game’s multiplayer once released was unplayable, had missing core features, usual terrible “Free to Play” progression system, etc. Then co-op campaign got delayed, you couldn’t replay missions, was buggy, etc. Add to all that the fact that the campaign was a DLC, that costs 60$(still does), and the content drought of 2022 and no wonder why nobody is wasting money in this game.
Then there’s Destiny 2. Bungie milked that game’s user base as much as it could for the past many years. It was paid at first, with paid DLCs, but then “turned free” once released to steam… only to continue having yearly 60$ DLCs, anual passes, paid currency, paid skins, all free content removed(you can basically only stay on the tower or play PVP with your starter weapons and nothing more, if you don’t have any DLCs), multiple exotic weapons only available if you buy DLCs.
When a company isn’t doing well, they always resort to the same: When bungie saw that their revenue projection was wrong by 45%, they fired about 100 people. However, what happened to the CEO, the person responsible for running said company and making the important decisions? Didn’t get kicked, No salary cut, no bonus cut, still there where he’ll make the same decisions as before. And adding insult to injury, said CEO also made a post on twitter “lamenting” they had to “say goodbye to colleagues who have all made a significant impact on our studio”.
Thankfuly, we live in the era of the internet, who didn’t like the souless statement:
And the way it was done, was the worst part. According to many employees, they were only told of what was happening as they were already being fired. Those who found in meetings ahead of time were told not to tell their colleagues. Team managers weren’t informed of what was happening until multiple of their team members were let go. Majority of the benefits said employees used to receive expired at the end of october, a DAY after they got fired.
I guess their CEO doesn’t really feel all that bad if that’s how they treat people who “have all made a significant impact on our studio”.
It’s a tale as old as time. Once companies become big, they switch from caring about users and employees to care only about profit for the shareholders and CEO, leading them to slowly making more greedy choices, until eventually they die or are forced to change. Bungie made lot’s of excuses for the way they were monetizing things, including saying they “don’t have money to invest into making new maps” for Destiny 2(even though the company was worth billions and bought by Sony in 2021), and are now simply paying the price.
The situation isn’t expected to get any better soon, as not long after the current events, many players abandoned Destiny 2 and Halo Infinite, which should further reduce their revenue.