Rockstar Games parent company Take-Two Interactive plans to lay off hundreds of workers and cancel some games

(Image credit: Rockstar Games)

What you need to know

  • Take-Two Interactive, the parent company of Rockstar Games, Private Division, Zynga, and 2K Games, is laying off 5% of its staff. 
  • This move affects hundreds of workers, and will also see multiple games canceled. 
  • It's not clear right now which studios and teams are being most affected by the cuts. 
  • Take-Two Interactive is in the process of purchasing Gearbox Entertainment for $460 million.

It's a day in the year that is 2024, and that means more layoffs in the gaming industry. 

Take-Two Interactive shared on Tuesday that it plans to lay off 5% of its total workforce, per Bloomberg. This move will cut hundreds of employees and some upcoming games canceled. It's not entirely clear at this time which teams will be affected by the cuts or which projects are being canceled. 

Take-Two Interactive is the parent company of multiple gaming divisions, including Rockstar Games — the developers of Grand Theft Auto and Red Dead Redemption — and 2K Games, which includes teams suck as Cloud Chamber, Firaxis, and Ghost Story Games. Take-Two Interactive also holds mobile gaming teams at Zynga, and also operates the Private Division publishing label for partnering with independent studios.

As of the end of 2023, Take-Two Interactive employed nearly 9,000 development staff plus additional workers across its various divisions, meaning the cuts will likely affect somewhere around 500 to 600 employees.

How will this affect Take-Two Interactive and its games?

Grand Theft Auto 6 screenshot showing a female character in a pool with a city skyline in the background

Grand Theft Auto 6 is coming in 2025 as the centerpiece for Take-Two Interactive. (Image credit: Rockstar Games)

Grand Theft Auto 6, which is slated to launch at some point in 2025 across Xbox Series X|S and PlayStation 5, is obviously not one of the games canceled as part of this move. While it's possible some staff at Rockstar Games could be affected by the cuts, the studio is essentially a one-project publisher, and Grand Theft Auto 6 is so integral to Take-Two's overall strategy that the idea it would be canceled is ludicrous.

As of February 2024, Take-Two Interactive claimed it had dozens of upcoming titles. Of these games, 17 were "immersive core" experiences, such as Judas, which is being developed by Ghost Story Games and coming to Xbox Series X|S, Windows PC, and PlayStation 5 in 2025. Seven upcoming titles were from Private Division, and we now know that the publishing label lost a project in the form of Yellow Brick Games' Eternal Strands, which is now being self-published.

Take-Two also had four upcoming "mid-core" titles, which are meant to be around the scope of something like LEGO 2K Drive. The company also had six "new iterations of existing games" on the way, meaning new ports or remasters of already-released titles. Finally, there were 18 mobile games in development. 

Take-Two Interactive is also in the process of purchasing Borderlands developer Gearbox Entertainment for $460 million, which is confirmed to be working on a new Borderlands game. 

Analysis: Good lord

We've had more layoffs that can be accurately counted this year, with massive cuts from across Embracer Group and Riot Games to Microsoft and Sony. Now, despite having one of the biggest games in the history of the medium on the way for next year, hundreds of employees at Take-Two Interactive will be laid off in the coming months. I hope everyone affected can get back on their feet sooner rather than later.

With that in mind, my first guess at this time is that some mobile games got cut or consolidated. Even for the mobile market, having 18 upcoming games in a two-year time span is a lot. I also wouldn't be surprised to see more unannounced games canceled from Private Division. 

Samuel Tolbert
Freelance Writer

Samuel Tolbert is a freelance writer covering gaming news, previews, reviews, interviews and different aspects of the gaming industry, specifically focusing on Xbox and PC gaming on Windows Central. You can find him on Twitter @SamuelTolbert.