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Several Cloud Imperium staffers have left in the past month, with many of them longtime veterans working in key positions.

Justin Carter, Contributing Editor

February 27, 2024

1 Min Read
Two ships in space combat in Star Citizen.
Image via Cloud Imperium Games.

At a Glance

  • An ex-producer for the studio also claims CIG is home to a "highly toxic" workplace culture.

Staff at Star Citizen creator Cloud Imperium Games (CIG) have reportedly been laid off. These cuts, said ex-Turbulent producer Annie Bouffard, were "mass layoffs" excused as staff relocation.

Per MassivelyOP, a number of alpha players on the space game learned several lead staff were no longer at the studio. These exits include live game director Todd Papy, who exited in January.

Bouffard claimed "very few" of the staff, Papy included, were able (or willing) to move to Manchester, UK. The studio revealed its new UK office in late 2021.

Papy was at CIG for nearly a decade, and other ex-staffers had similarly long tenures. In the last month, CIG made cuts in its design, production, and QA teams.

Level designer Dave Kubicka semi-corroborates Bouffard's claims, as he says he was let go after CIG restructured. Other ex-staff don't mention their specific circumstances.

Accusations of toxicity at Cloud Imperium

In her (translated) post, Bouffard called Cloud Imperium a "highly toxic company." She claimed to have been "gaslighted" over concerns about the layoffs, and that her boss hadn't spoken to her in months.

"At my annual evaluation...we spent an hour on my character and my 'negativity,'" she wrote. "I was mocked in a condescending way when I said that what mattered to me was the well-being of my teams."

Game Developer has reached out to Cloud Imperium Games about the layoffs and allegations, and will update when a response is given.

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About the Author(s)

Justin Carter

Contributing Editor, GameDeveloper.com

A Kansas City, MO native, Justin Carter has written for numerous sites including IGN, Polygon, and SyFy Wire. In addition to Game Developer, his writing can be found at io9 over on Gizmodo. Don't ask him about how much gum he's had, because the answer will be more than he's willing to admit.

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