Gaming News

NBA 2K Studio Visual Concepts Austin Hit by Layoffs

The current tsunami of industry layoffs has hit another studio, namely Visual Concepts Austin, known for its work on many of Visual Concepts’ games including NBA 2K and Lego 2K Drive.

According to ex-Visual Concepts art manager Brad Bowling (spotted by Game Developer), Visual Concepts Austin laid off “a group of very talented developers” yesterday.

Game Developer also cites a LinkedIn post by ex-associate software engineer Sydney F, who said that she had been laid off alongside “several other amazing colleagues”.

Visual Concepts Austin has worked on many Visual Concepts games, including Lego 2K Drive.

Visual Concepts Austin is just one of Visual Concepts’ many divisions; the 2K subsidiary also has offices in Budapest, Shanghai, and Seoul, as well as its head office in Novato, California.

According to the official Visual Concepts website, the Austin studio “works on almost everything we’ve got”, including the NBA 2K and WWE 2K franchises, as well as Lego 2K Drive and “other projects”.

Lead Austin software engineer Chris Wingler is responsible for one of Visual Concepts’ “major NBA 2K Live Ops teams”, meaning she helps to deliver live events for the basketball sim throughout the year.

Kobe Bryant in NBA 2K24, a Visual Concepts game
NBA 2K is just one of the franchises on which Visual Concepts Austin has worked.

The exact scope of Visual Concepts’ layoffs isn’t clear, but one thing is for sure. These layoffs are, unfortunately, simply the latest in a long line, with studios both large and small losing employees in the last year or so.

Studios confirmed to have been hit by layoffs include Embracer subsidiaries Lost Boys Interactive and 3D Realms, as well as major studios like Amazon’s gaming divisionDestiny developer Bungie, and tabletop titan Hasbro.

Other developers, like Outriders studio People Can Fly and Wayfinder creator Airship Syndicate, have also reportedly been hit by employee layoffs.

It’s a story that’s becoming increasingly common, and unfortunately, the industry’s current wave of layoffs shows no signs of slowing anytime soon. Stay tuned for more on this as we get it.

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