EA Announces Major Layoffs and Cancels Respawn’s Star Wars FPS Shooter

n an unfortunate turn of events, Electronic Arts (EA) has confirmed a significant workforce reduction, with almost 700 employees being laid off across the company. Alongside this, the gaming giant has also made the decision to cancel the development of a highly-anticipated first-person Star Wars shooter led by Peter Hirschman, a LucasArts veteran and co-creator of Medal of Honor.

The announcement came during a news briefing on Wednesday, where CEO Andrew Wilson addressed the company’s response to the “accelerating industry transformation and changing player needs.” This shift in focus has prompted the cancellation of certain games, including the Star Wars FPS project by Respawn Entertainment.

Laura Miele, president of EA Entertainment, explained that the decision to cancel the Star Wars FPS game was based on a strategic review of Respawn’s portfolio. The company aims to concentrate on Respawn’s successful franchises, such as Jedi Fallen Order and Apex Legends, which have resonated well with players. In a statement, Laura Miele expressed:

“Respawn’s unique ability to connect with players and create exceptional game experiences is unrivaled in entertainment…As we’ve looked at Respawn’s portfolio over the last few months, what’s clear is the games our players are most excited about are Jedi and Respawn’s rich library of owned brands.”

The shift in focus away from the Star Wars FPS game reflects EA’s decision to pivot towards projects based on its existing intellectual properties. The company is committed to providing support for its current games while exploring new ventures within the EA-owned brand portfolio.

Laura Miele emphasized that the decision to cancel the Star Wars project does not diminish the talent, tenacity, or passion of the development team. She acknowledged the difficulty of walking away from a project but stressed that prioritizing iconic franchises and delivering blockbuster storytelling remains the primary focus.

Notably, actor Cameron Monaghan hinted at a third Jedi game during Ocala Comic Con last September, suggesting a continued focus on the Jedi series. As EA allows Respawn to concentrate on Apex Legends and Jedi games, it underscores the company’s commitment to maintaining the quality of its existing games before venturing into new game development.

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