BioWare lays off 50 employees in shift to become more 'agile'

 Dragon Age: Inquisition
Dragon Age: Inquisition

What you need to know

  • BioWare is laying off 50 employees as part of a transition to become a more "agile" studio.

  • The studio will be trying to find places for as many employees as possible at other Electronic Arts studios.

  • The next Mass Effect game is still in pre-production.

We've learned some unfortunate news surrounding the future of BioWare.

BioWare shared on Wednesday that the studio is evolving in order to become a "more agile and more focused studio" in the in gaming industry. As part of that process, 50 employees at BioWare are being laid off. BioWare and Electronic Arts are trying to find places for the affected employees at other Electronic Arts studios, but there are no guarantees how this will play out.

BioWare also shared that the next Mass Effect game is still in pre-production, while development on Dragon Age: Dreadwolf is continuing so that it can be a game "worthy of the Dragon Age name."

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This news comes months after Electronic Arts laid off hundreds of employees as part of a broader restructuring. According to a report from VentureBeat, this move also came as Electronic Arts has decided to not to continue working with unionized quality assurance employees at Keywords.

Keywords provides support for numerous games across multiple disciplines, with employees who had been helping on Dragon Age: Dreadwolf for some time unionizing back in June 2022.

Analysis: Layoffs suck, and Mass Effect is still far off

These layoffs are disappointing to learn about. I can certainly understand a studio deciding to become more agile and flexible, something that's often not possible as a larger team, but the fact is making that decision has a human cost.

Dragon Age: Dreadwolf's release timing will probably not be affected by this move all too much, but the fact the next Mass Effect is still in pre-production is something of an eyebrow raiser to me. I don't expect we'll see that game before 2026 now, and I wouldn't rule out it launching even further off than that.