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Staff Cuts Hit Rock Band, Dance Central Creator Harmonix

Boston-based music gaming pioneer Harmonix has had to institute staff cuts of about 12-15 percent, citing necessary restructuring to better align the studio for its current product plans, according to media reports.
Boston-based music gaming pioneer Harmonix has had to institute staff cuts, citing necessary restructuring to better align the studio for its current product plans. According to a report from consumer weblog Joystiq, about 12-15 percent of the studio's staff, which stands at about 240 people, have been affected: "Harmonix is restructuring our organization to bring it into alignment with our current product development plans," said the studio in a statement. "Unfortunately, this means reducing the number of full-time staff," the company continued. "We sincerely appreciate the work of each and every one of these employees. Harmonix is working to ensure that those affected are well taken care of as we make this change." The company is currently developing an unnamed 3DS music game, and most recently released Dance Central, the top-selling Kinect game in the month of the device's launch. It also continues to support Rock Band 3 with DLC and community initiatives. At the beginning of 2011 the studio was sold by Viacom to investment firm Columbus Nova for just under $50 plus the assumption of liabilities, a quiet finish to the studio's time spent driving massive Rock Band franchise sales for the MTV parent. Harmonix pioneered the peripheral-equipped music game genre, which saw robust sales and enormous popularity followed by rapid contraction.

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