Most of the QA team working on Call of Duty: Warzone are on strike protesting a slew of surprise layoffs that began last week.
According to Bloomberg reporter Jason Schreier, “Most of a team of about 40 QA testers […] they leave work to protest a sudden layoff that began on Friday. They say they will retire until the dismissal is reversed. ” . A statement from the group posted on Twitter via CharlieIntel and Axios reporter Stephen Totilo backed up those claims.
Breaking: QA testers at Raven Software are staging a walkout today, protesting the sudden news on Friday that many of them were being laid off after initially being promised a raise. https://t.co/B7wuppEODr
— CharlieIntel (@charlieINTEL) December 6, 2021
Last week, Activision began meeting with various contractors to inform staff if they would keep or lose their jobs as of January 28, and about 12 employees, nearly a third of the team, were told they would need to find new jobs at the New Years, despite not having underperformed in his duties. This reportedly comes after QA staff were told that Activision was working towards a salary restructure that would see salaries increase.
The release occurs a few days before the start of the integration of Call of Duty: Vanguard with Warzone, a mode that Raven is primarily responsible for maintenance. Given the difficulties created by integrating with Black Ops: Cold War and Modern Warfare last year, the QA department is likely to be very important during the transition, meaning that this collective action could create substantial difficulties for startup. of the next Warzone era.
The collective action also comes at a very difficult time for Activision Blizzard as a whole. The company faces an ongoing lawsuit related to allegations of sexism and harassment, and there have been repeated calls for CEO Bobby Kotick to resign due to his inability to fix the company culture during his tenure.
In a statement, Activision said that “we are going to convert approximately 500 temporary workers to full-time employees in the coming months. Unfortunately, as part of this change, we also notified 20 temps at the studios that their contracts would not be extended. “