Rooster Teeth Lays Off 13% Of Entire Staff
It has been a tough few months for animation and gaming entity Rooster Teeth. Many of you will already know that name, probably from their various YouTube channels or maybe their insanely popular Halo series Red Vs. Blue, but these last few months have not been easy for the growing company. Despite branching out in multiple ways over the last few years, and being seemingly rather successful, that growth has not been without struggle. Despite some success from animated series like Gen:Lock and RWBY, there’s been a fair amount of problems for the company recently.
And now, those problems have come to a head, resulting in a mass layoff from the Austin-based firm. In all, 50 people were fired across multiple divisions of the company. As of yet, only a few from within the company have stepped forward to confirm themselves being let go, expect more in future days though. In a post from CEO and co-founder Matt Hullum on the RT site, he announced the layoffs, confirming that 50 people would be cut from the company roster. It’s unclear what divisions were affected, but the events staff has apparently not suffered any cuts.
Rooster Teeth counts over 45 million subscribers across its YouTube channels and 3 million registered community members on their main site. Across those fanbases, the reaction is pretty mixed, with some being more incredulous than others. Some are also complaining about the recent increase in “First” (Rooster Teeth’s premium subscription service) tiers for their content. Which frankly does seem like a pretty bad look.
“As we looked ahead at all of our upcoming opportunities and challenges, we had to make some difficult decisions about how we are organized,” Hullum wrote. He added that the layoffs are not “reflective of anyone’s individual performance, and we’re thankful for all that our former colleagues have contributed.”
Having grown to more than 400 employees as of this year, some bloat was inevitable, and these cuts happen when companies get too big too fast, which is definitely the case for Rooster Teeth. It also doesn’t help that various projects that the company has undertaken to diversify their presence in gaming and geek culture haven’t exactly panned out. Their most recent release, a multiplayer shooter called Vicious Circle, failed miserably after only achieving a peak Steam user count of 323. The game failed to gain traction after the animation company failed to effectively promote it, only really marketing it within the existing fanbase. Take a lesson game devs, outreach is important.
The addition of an allegedly brutal crunch culture within the company also didn’t help matters either. All in all, this whole mess speaks of a desire and a need for major changes on the part of Rooster Teeth. We join the rest of the RT fanbase in wishing those affected by the layoffs the best of luck in the future.
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