Activision’s Raven Software, which runs Call of Duty Warzone, abruptly laid off a number of QA testers today

1 : Anonymous2021/12/04 00:22 ID: r8czu4
Activision's Raven Software, which runs Call of Duty Warzone, abruptly laid off a number of QA testers today
2 : Anonymous2021/12/04 05:38 ID: hn5x2m1

I literally used to work for activision qa. My name is actually in the credits of several cod titles including warzone. Being abruptly laid off was pretty much normal at the end of a project. Thankfully, they can go on unemployment and most of them will be called back to work on the next project. But it really does suck to have to go into work knowing that could be your last day without an advanced notice.

ID: hn6fsl1


ID: hn6gcvl

I was also a QA tester for Activision back in the day. They will make more money on unemployment.

ID: hn75s4w
ID: hn7ltn7

Oh, trust me I know. That wasn't even the worst part of working for activision. Don't get me wrong there were parts of that job I really enjoyed but the qa grind is rough. The best thing that could happen for the entire gaming industry is if they unionize.

ID: hn7c40l

Unlikely any of these people are affording a mortgage on tester pay.

ID: hn7ulqo

While the capitalist system sucks ass in many shapes or forms don't ever fool yourself to think it's an actual system that screws workers but it's always people. And you will forever no matter what system always have to break your neck to watch out for people trying to screw you. Even voluntary projects that people have done on good will and free time out of their own love and no need have been screwed by a system for just trusting.

ID: hn6j8is

Then get an actual stable job? The capitalist system isn’t ruthless in most parts of the fucking world. That’s such an idiotic statement. This type of job is meant to be a sort of “side gig” job, if this is how you rely on living for your whole life then it’s your fault.

3 : Anonymous2021/12/04 00:28 ID: hn4wb19

I would assume that is somewhat normal when a title is released and done going through the production stage. It's a tough position to try to exist in, but it's often one of the very few ways to break in to the industry.

Late edit:

In reviewing the Tweets out there that added some detail, the way Raven is handling this is insanely unprofessional. While they are giving the employees a 6+ week heads up, they are spreading the conversations out over a week with a weekend in between some of them. That's just God awful HR work. Yes, QA work is the low rung and the development cycle suggested a wind down in QA for the next year or so, but you can do this much more respectfully and professionally than they way Raven has chosen to.

ID: hn5iljx

As someone who did QA work at AAA studios; You're usually on a contract, at least I was for the 5 years a I did it, so you know when the ending is near.

Layoffs after a game launch is normal, however we, I, were never told my wages were going to be increased only to be laid off a bit later. That's just plain ass hole behavior.

ID: hn5n9uw

When I did it, wage increase would have been a joke lol. We made basically minimum wage.

ID: hn6zzwa

Isn't that different, though? You have a contract that you know is until a certain date. Project X spans this many months, and after that you're done with that contract and can plan for a new one in time.

This Activision layoff seems to not come with any of that pre-known planning and they're just laying off people, no?

ID: hn7pda0

Would you say the work is more manual work or more auto work? Just curious how much can a fresh out of college person pick up or start the same time fresh as a more experienced person throughout the entire development cycle? Even as a developer, sometimes we get replaced by fresh grads who learned more programming languages or popular ones and we either need to learn them or could face the music.

ID: hn4ynh1

Yeah they’ll do a bunch of QA hiring during their next game

ID: hn5zmyc

Hey, they have to raise the money for Bobby Kotick's $150 million bonus this year from somewhere, right?

ID: hn6z842

Yeah, the way they'll spend it is likely to be gross and very American

ID: hn6fney

Don't defend this corporate bs. This is people's livelihoods we are talking about. They have families to feed and bills to pay just like you. Have some human compassion

ID: hn6knxo

Contract roles existing doesn't imply one is against Human compassion...

4 : Anonymous2021/12/04 00:38 ID: hn4xiyp

Activision really gunning to stay in the weekly news cycle.

5 : Anonymous2021/12/04 19:44 ID: hn8c8rd

So they laid off a department they don’t even use?

6 : Anonymous2021/12/04 00:58 ID: hn501jj

I'm just glad to hear they actually did QA. Some companies like EA seem to think that's the job of the players.

ID: hn51lyg

Wish I could upvote you twice

ID: hn6dxwr

Take my silver, this is too true

7 : Anonymous2021/12/04 07:09 ID: hn657y0

I didn't care for Warzone at all, but man do I ever miss Soldier of Fortune 2, and other Raven Software Games.

ID: hn8avwv

Yea I miss the old raven before they were regulated to the COD mines never to been seen again. Miss there classics like heretic, Hexen and the soldier of fortune games.

ID: hn985fu

Oh man, I hadn't even realized they made Heretic and Hexen! I loved those games! They also made Star Wars Jedi Knight II: Jedi Outcast, Jedi Knight Academy, those were my favorite Star Wars games, they're just fantastic!

They also made a few others I didn't realize either, Star Trek: Voyager-Elite Force, Wolfenstein 2009, X-Men Legends to name a few. Man typing all this out has made me sadder then I already was!

8 : Anonymous2021/12/04 07:22 ID: hn66bpo

Why pay QA when players can test the game for free?

9 : Anonymous2021/12/04 22:52 ID: hn92jgr

Activision probably trying to make space to justify not laying off all the rapists at Blizzard.

10 : Anonymous2021/12/04 00:24 ID: hn4vuar

Well they clearly weren't serving their purpose anyway

ID: hn5aspy

Warzone doesn’t seem to ever be in the news for negative stuff.

ID: hn5ayaz

I mean it does have constant cheaters. We will see what this anticheat does though.

ID: hn5tbia

Huh? CoD has had pretty solid launches for a number of generations.. no ugly launches in quite a while. Vanguard is one of the more polished editions in quite some time outside some minor menu bugs and some annoying intermittent episodes of packet loss. They don't have anything like the reputation that EA/DICE or rockstar have at this point.

ID: hn5yfii

I wish you where right about vanguard. It was polished the first week because ppl didn’t discover glitches yet. Unfortunately Now some maps are barely playable

ID: hn6b5fu

The combat pacing matchmaking doesn't even work over a month after launch. Every match is a question of "am I gonna play 4v4 or 13v13"

11 : Anonymous2021/12/04 22:42 ID: hn9132e

Wait, they QA test their games?

12 : Anonymous2021/12/04 08:24 ID: hn6b0he

Surely this would be contract work and they knew their contract was coming to an end?

Obviously in a non gaming related contract role you may get extended but seems like at the release of a game you’re likely not to extended.

Best practice to have something lined up for when this happens.

Not trying to be dick but this is just how contract roles work right?

13 : Anonymous2021/12/04 01:16 ID: hn529bg

Jason Schreirer….the CNN of gaming journalism.

ID: hn5gsb8

This doesn't even make sense.

ID: hn56rm2

Except he has legit info everytime and doesnt make misleading guessess for you to take and outrage.

ID: hn59jp3

Yeah he’s not the FOX “News” of gaming journalism

14 : Anonymous2021/12/04 03:10 ID: hn5g82h


As if the consumer being free QA is new..

15 : Anonymous2021/12/04 04:03 ID: hn5mjs0

Jason Schreier is nothing but a pot stirrer. The guy has an axe to grind with corporate game companies, which is fine - many of us do. But QA tester layoffs are not that abnormal. Everything he does is to portray gaming companies in a bad light.

ID: hn61rbj

They said they were basically promising them a raise and a long term job all year and instead they’re getting picked off one by one over the next week to see who gets fired.

Q&A people getting fired isn’t uncommon but doing it this way is uncommon.

ID: hn5tlew

/comments/r8cfb0/some_qa_staff_members_at_raven_software_were_told/hn4s3qu/" class="reddit-press-link" target="_blank" rel="noopener">

Well, when gaming companies do fucked up things they deserve to be cast in a bad light.

ID: hn5z61s

It might be normal, but it doesn't make it right. Companies like this make enough money to where they don't need to hire and fire QA testers seasonally like they're migrant workers. Meanwhile Bobby Kotick is literally making HUNDREDS OF MILLIONS. He could pay all of these QA salaries out of his own paycheck and probably not even realize the money was missing from his fat $150 mil bonus.

ID: hn6018g

shut up bobby kotick

ID: hn69310

But QA tester layoffs are not that abnormal.

Oh so it's just a normal livelihood crisis. Instead of something bad that a specific company did, all companies do it, therefore making it just fucking peachy?

16 : Anonymous2021/12/04 10:33 ID: hn6k0qj

Cyberpunk, GTA defective edition and BF2024 have all proven QA testers are no longer needed.

Players are happy to turn the bugs into memes and wait for patches.

17 : Anonymous2021/12/04 01:07 ID: hn515pb

Tough shit, test better.

Tired of broken ass releases.

If we need an industry wide wipe of testers then it must be so. We need proper game testing.

ID: hn58fz6

I don’t think you understand how things work

19 : Anonymous2021/12/04 05:10 ID: hn5u45d

Wait they had QA testers lol?

20 : Anonymous2021/12/04 17:04 ID: hn7ourx

Commenting as a developer who worked with testers and doing some testing myself at the dev level(making sure my code works before pushing for qa or requirement testing), do the game qa do any auto scripted testing or everything is manual. I know for non gaming development there has been a push for more automated testing via junit, jenkins and other scripted tools so there is more speed to delivery but still robust test vs all manual testing. I do have coworkers getting paid 100k clicking on web pages making sure they function correctly. I can guarantee if the customer wanted more automated testing (do need money to do that) they would be looking for some other tasks to do,but NOT FIRED since my company can afford to just like Activision.

I do see that as technologies advance,especially working in technical field,you gotta build your skill set. Be it more coding languages or building test scripts or automated processes because once you make too much money and your skill set can be quickly learned at cheaper cost, you might be looking for a job.

21 : Anonymous2021/12/05 01:56 ID: hn9rqub

Raven Software was one of my favorite developers. But like every Activision developer they eventually turn into another cog in the disgusting CoD wheel.


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