"essentially their entire Apex Legends QA staff"
According to various insider sources, EA fired over 200 employees from their Baton Rouge studio this morning. Those employees’ main positions were as Quality Assurance testers for Apex Legends.
One former employee relayed their experience of the event on Twitter this morning, saying that those let go comprised “essentially their entire Apex Legends QA staff”. According to their account, EA held a meeting via Zoom, during which they informed all the testers present that their jobs were terminated. This seems to have come as a surprise both to the employees being let go, and their former managers and supervisors.
EA gave the following statement to Kotaku when asked about the event:
Testing games is an integral part of delivering the best experiences for our players. As part of our ongoing global strategy, we are expanding the distribution of our Apex Legends testing team and ending testing execution that’s been concentrated in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, impacting services provided by our third-party provider. Our global team, inclusive of remote playtesters across the U.S., enables us to increase the hours per week we’re able to test and optimize the game and reflects a commitment to understand and better serve our growing community around the world.
Reportedly, all employees who were laid off received sixty days severance pay, though that may not be enough to cover each of their contracts. This certainly seems like a major shift in operations for EA and Apex Legends. How this will affect the overall quality and testing process for the game remains to be seen.