Amazon Lays Off Workers from Game Division

Technology Giant Amazon Pivots Resources, Laying Off 180 Workers in Gaming Division

In a strategic move, Amazon has undertaken a restructuring initiative, resulting in the layoff of 180 employees from its video game division. This development, initially reported by Aftermath and independently verified by IGN, encompasses staff reductions in Game Growth and the Crown Channel, an original Twitch program launched in 2020. Amazon Games Vice President, Christoph Hartman, addressed the layoffs in a memo to employees, emphasizing the decision’s deliberative nature and its alignment with reshaping the company’s gaming focus. You can read the memo here:

Hello everyone,

I have some important news to share with you all today about the future of our business.

As I’ve shared previously, our goal for Amazon Games is to become one of the leading creators of high-quality gaming content that delights players for years to come. Part of this bold vision involves experimentation as we explore what gamers want most and we regularly review these experiments to ensure we’re creating the most impact.

After our initial restructuring in April, it became clear that we needed to focus our resources even more on the areas that are growing with the highest potential to drive our business forward. As such, the leadership team and I have made the difficult decision to close two of our initiatives – Crown Channel and Game Growth. We are also refocusing our efforts for Prime Gaming. We’ve listened to our customers and we know delivering free games every month is what they want most, so we are refining our Prime benefit to increase our focus there. With these changes in our business approach come changes to our resourcing, resulting in the elimination of just over 180 roles.

I know this is difficult news and that the impact will be felt widely. It never feels good to say goodbye to colleagues. This isn’t a decision the leadership team came to quickly; it was the result of extensive considerations and road mapping for our future. We are proud of the work the teams have been doing, pushing into new areas with weekly content on Crown Channel, and finding more ways to help publishers reach new audiences with Game Growth. But after further evaluation of our businesses, it became clear that we need focus our resources and efforts to deliver great games to players now and in the future.

Each employee whose role has been impacted should now have a live meeting scheduled this morning so we can discuss these changes directly. We are also working to ensure all impacted employees are given the support they need on an individual level, including severance pay, outplacement services, health insurance benefits and more. Your managers, business leaders and HRBPs are available for conversations and we have a licensed counselor available 24/7 through our Employee Assistance Program (US Phone: 1-833-721-2323, outside of the US, please click here for contact information).

I recognize that this is the second time this year that you are hearing about org-wide team changes and seeing colleagues go, so let me be very clear when I say this: I remain confident in our future. We are developing and publishing great games with high potential, our studio teams are growing, and our roadmap is bright. We are focused on our upcoming publishing launches for Throne and Liberty and Blue Protocol, as well as future projects like our Tomb Raider and The Lord of the Rings games, and our projects with Glowmade and Disruptive Games. Our internal studios are actively recruiting and hiring to fill critical roles as they develop new IP, while Prime Gaming continues to secure deals and deliver compelling content for members every month. We are committed to our vision of becoming one of the leading developers and publishers of high-quality games, and focusing our resources accordingly will help us get there.

If you have questions, please reach out to me or your team leads.



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Hartman acknowledged the difficulty of parting with colleagues and emphasized the leadership team’s commitment to redirecting resources towards delivering exceptional gaming experiences. The move is seen as a response to an evaluation of Amazon’s business portfolio, signaling a strategic shift to concentrate efforts on game development and publishing.

This marks the latest in a series of layoffs for Amazon in the current year. The company had previously cut 18,000 jobs in January and an additional 9,000 positions in March, reflecting the dynamic nature of its organizational adjustments.

While Amazon Games was established in 2012, it has faced challenges in achieving industry success comparable to tech giants like Sony and Microsoft. The restructuring comes as Amazon Games aims to enhance its focus on creating and publishing video games. Despite previous cancellations, such as the free-to-play game Crucible in 2020 and a Lord of the Rings MMORPG in 2021, Amazon Games is actively working on projects, including an untitled Tomb Raider game developed by Crystal Dynamics and a Lord of the Rings MMO in collaboration with Embracer Group’s Middle-earth Enterprises.