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Disney Infinity getting Marvel, Star Wars expansions, “several hundred” staff to be laid off – rumour

Monday, 3rd February 2014 22:54 GMT By Brenna Hillier

Disney Infinity will soon to leverage some of the House of Mouse’s most popular acquired properties, but the sandbox title’s success hasn’t prevented an upcoming mass lay-off, according to financial sector rumours.

disneyinfinity

The Wall Street Journal cites “people close to the company” for word that Disney is “preparing to lay off several hundred people” at Disney Interactive, which employs about 3,000 staff.

The cuts are expected to begin after Disney releases its quarterly financials on Wednesday, and casual developer Playdom is expected to be among the hardest hit. Disney acquired Playdom in 2010 for $563 million and has been battling to justify the cost ever since.

Although Disney Infinity has been successful, driving Disney Interactive to quarterly income for the first time in years, the lay-offs are not altogether unexpected, as Disney had reportedly internally announced a reorganisation of the division following the unwilling resignation of Disney Interactive co-president John Pleasants.

Disney Infinity
Meanwhile, Disney will continue to invest in Disney Infinity, the Inetractive division’s current meal ticket. Sources said “new versions” of the game featuring Marvel and Star Wars characters are expected, which presumably means themed playsets similar to those released so far.

No release window was provided; the expansions are said to be in development now.

Disney Infinity cost the company more than $100 million to develop, but drew $396 million in revenue during the quarter ending September 2013. Disney Interactive is yet to see profitable ful year result, however.

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6 Comments

  1. TheWulf

    Sounds like it hasn’t been the success they were hoping for, which I called. The whole thing felt so phoned in with the cacophonous aesthetics and terrible animations, throw in the choice of characters and it’s almost like it was designed to fail.

    Is Disney trying to make itself look less attractive to potential buyers or something?

    Really, though, I couldn’t understand most of this one from the outset. It’s a sandbox, I get that. But it needs to be more than that because Minecraft — which kids love and is notably cheaper. But it never really offered anything.

    There are so many different things they would have had to do in order to actually be a valid Skylanders competitor.

    #1 7 months ago
  2. Cort

    @TheWulf

    You called it wrong.

    It’s actually very successful and very good fun – the sandbox mode beats Minecraft hands down. As the article states, it has delivered almost $4.00 revenue for every $1 it cost to make (though the profit margin is not clear). Disney Interactive Studios claims global sales of three million starter packs in five months, exceeding expectations.

    http://www.gamesindustry.biz/articles/2014-01-20-disney-infinity-sells-3-million-starter-packs

    Expansion packs don’t require as much resource as the original boxed game. That may explain the staff reduction if DI has no big forthcoming projects on the books and other elements of the division are under-performing.

    #2 7 months ago
  3. SinfulKnight

    A Marvel and Star Wars expansion! Their is a meme out their of a cat reading the news paper asking itself “Should I get Disney Infinity?”

    #3 7 months ago
  4. felixbrownSLC

    @TheWulf

    Wulf, you’re embarrassing yourself. Despite being the INITIAL release, Disney Infinity was in the top ten best selling games of 2013 and has already sold 3 million starter packs (that’s not even counting additional characters and playsets)

    Read the article. The layoffs are unrelated to Infinity.
    “operations expected to be hit by the layoffs is the struggling Playdom social-gaming business,…Disney is expected to continue investing in “Infinity,”

    Now imagine if the speculation is true and Disney adds Marvel AND Star Wars to this game?

    #4 7 months ago
  5. ChunkyLover112

    you are all looking at this the wrong way. what we should be looking at is what race those who are to be fired are.

    #5 7 months ago
  6. felixbrownSLC

    @TheWulf

    You sure called it Wulf, good job.

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/briansolomon/2014/02/05/infinity-game-is-disneys-star-helps-post-record-profits/?partner=yahootix

    #6 7 months ago

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