Despite Huge Revenue, Cold-Blooded Scrooge Activision Lays Off Call Of Duty QA Testers
Being told you will be out of work come the new year is a horrible way to start the holiday season, but it appears Activision-Blizzard has done just that to some of its quality assurance testers. Confirmed by a Call of Duty community manager on Twitter, the employees will be out of work come January 28th, after being strung along with promises of raises and following a relocation to Madison, Wisconsin.
Raven Software, acquired by Activision-Blizzard in 1997, is known for titles such as Call of Duty: Modern Warfare Remastered, and has had a hand in Call of Duty: Warzone, Black Ops Cold War, and Ghosts, among other titles. Along with the remaining Call of Duty catalog (sans Vanguard), these titles have netted Activision-Blizzard more than $3 billion in 2020 alone. That financial success, however, apparently wasn't enough to keep the QA staff employed, even at the meager salaries they were likely being paid.
Associate Community Manager Austin O’Brien reported on Twitter yesterday that Activision promised raises for his colleagues in QA at Raven Software, many of which relocated from Madison, Wisconsin. O’Brien explained, however, that “one by one, valuable members of the team were called into meetings and told they were being let go,” and that they will be out of work on January 28th. We have seen Scrooge-like, cost-saving measures like this before from the company, such as when nearly 200 employees from Activision were laid-off despite CEO Bobby Kotick receiving a massive $200 million bonus that year.
At the end of the day, these layoffs are just one more thing to pile onto the growing list of reasons to dislike Activision-Blizzard. This comes at a time when the company is mired in sexual harassment issues and has an ongoing public image issue that has even gotten the company removed from The Game Awards. In any event, let us know what you think of this complex situation in the comments below.