Immutable Games Studio is letting go of multiple employees, including one of its senior game designers, amid a slump in crypto prices.
James Wakeham worked as a lead designer on Immutable’s crypto game called Gods Unchained, a blockchain-based digital trading card game. On Twitter, he recently stated that he “and a bunch of people” were let go and that Wakeham is now looking for a new job.
The layoffs were announced on Monday at an all-hands meeting and affected 6% of the company’s workforce.
Bad news, me and a bunch of people just got made redundant at Immutable. I'm a senior level game designer with 7+ years experience and 4+ years leading the design on a live service TCG. Any help with jobs would help a lot. DM me. Help me feed my cat Oscar! (Oscar not need a job) pic.twitter.com/LQVgdRmKhv
— James Wakeham (@VideoJamesDev) July 26, 2022
After its latest round of fundraising in which it secured $200 million, Immutable touted a valuation of $2.5 billion. It’s the startup behind Immutable X, an layer-2 scaling solution designed for games and , used by firms including TikTok and GameStop, which recently launched an NFT marketplace.
The CEO and co-founder of Immutable, James Ferguson, told employees the company is still in “a fantastic position,” according to reporting from CNET.
Elsewhere, Immutable has made it clear that despite the recent layoffs it has no plans to slow down on hiring new employees, especially when it comes to working on Gods Unchained, or its upcoming action role-playing game Guild of Guardians, under development by Stepico Games.
“We are actively increasing hires across product, engineering, and tokenomics in Gods Unchained as we focus on scaling it to mainstream and beyond,” a spokesperson from Immutable’s U.S. branch told Kotaku Australia.
“We have made the decision to conduct a small reorganization within Gods Unchained to help better enable us to achieve our goal of creating the next generation of web3 games,” the spokesperson said.
Immutable has grown to 280 employees from 180 at the start of this year, according to the spokesperson. And they said the Australia-based company is “on track” to grow its headcount to 360 employees in the next five months.
On Twitter, Wakeham explained why he was let go in responding to one user who didn’t understand the company’s decision and questioned Immutable’s financials.
“They have a very long runway,” Wakeham said. “They decided that a bunch of the people who were working on the game weren't supporting where the product needs to go next.”
Immutable’s decision to reduce its headcount comes amid a swath of layoffs from companies in the cryptocurrency industry.
Several firms have cited the ongoing crypto winter in making moves to let people go, and that business operations have been negatively impacted by the declining price of cryptocurrencies and other digital assets.
While the global cryptocurrency market hit an all-time high of $2.9 trillion in market cap in November of 2021, it has since sunk to just above $1 trillion, according to CoinMarketCap.
The price of Bitcoin is down 68% from its peak of just over $67,500–set that same month–to around $21,300 as of publication, according to CoinMarketCap.