Daybreak Game Company, the once-and-former Sony Online Entertainment, has confirmed that it is laying staff off following its acquisition by investment firm Columbus Nova.
Founded in 1998 from Sony Interactive Studios America when its parent company merged Sony Online Ventures and Sony Pictures Entertainment, Sony Online Entertainment has been responsible for some of the company's best-loved output from massively multiplayer online franchise EverQuest - dubbed EverCrack by its addicted players - through to the more recent and divisive zombie-themed survival title H1Z1. Early this month, Sony confirmed it had sold the company to Columbus Nova
which immediately rebranded it as the Daybreak Game Company and pledged to continue development of the studio's planned titles.
Development may well be continuing, but it will be doing so without a chunk of staff. 'To better position our newly independent studio for future growth opportunities and to deliver on our legacy of making top online games, we have had to make some tough choices including realignment of resources,
' the freshly-rebranded company explained in a euphemism-heavy statement late yesterday. 'Unfortunately, this realignment means adjusting staffing as well. We announced today that we will eliminate positions in our San Diego and Austin studios. Many of us are saying goodbye to close friends and colleagues who we’ve worked with over the years, and we are grateful for the memories and all that they’ve contributed. They will be greatly missed, and we wish them nothing but the best for the future.
The company has denied that the cutbacks will have an effect on the operations of its current games, but the news has already poured oil on the fire of displeasure over H1Z1's use of microtransactions to give players willing to cough up real-world cash seemingly unfair advantages over the more frugal gamer. Users of Reddit have begun comparing the company's actions to a pump and dump scam
, claiming that the investment firm has planned to 'fire part of the [H1Z1] team and suck all the profit they can out of this game before abandoning it.