Crash Bandicoot developer Toys for Bob is now assisting Raven Software with the development of Call of Duty: Warzone, as first revealed on the team’s Twitter account. Multiple former employees stated the company’s shift to supporting Warzone has come with staff layoffs.
Toys for Bob is best known for Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy and Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time. The developer says that its now working in a support role on Activision’s popular battle royale game.
“Toys for Bob is proud to support development for Season 3 of Call of Duty Warzone, and look forward to more to come,” Toys for Bob tweeted.
The news comes after a shaky year for Call of Duty: Warzone. The game was in rough shape following its integration of Black Ops Cold War last year. This integration combined both games’ progression systems and weapons, but came with a litany of bugs and balancing issues. Since then, the community has been vocal about the myriad of problems the game faced, and it was clear Raven didn’t have the bandwidth to address everything in a timely manner. Warzone remained in this shape from December 2020 until April 2021 — a long time for one of the leading battle royales.
VGC reports that “virtually every studio at Activision is now working on Call of Duty.”
According to former Toys for Bob team member Nicholas Kole (as originally reported by VGC), this shift has supposedly come with layoffs. “Everyone I interfaced with and worked along was let go,” Nicholas said. “I’m very glad it’s not a [total] shuttering,” the former staff member added, in response to the news of Toys for Bob’s announcement.
Same! Altho everyone I interfaced with and worked along was let go, I’m very glad it’s not a totally shuttering
— Nicholas Kole (@FromHappyRock) April 30, 2021
Another former employee simply tweeted “I no longer work at Toys for Bob,” with a crying emoji.
I no longer work at Toys for Bob… ???? https://t.co/58NbuvSbZz
— Blake the Non-Binary Robot (@nonbinary_robot) April 29, 2021
Aside from the reported layoffs, Toys for Bob’s shift to supporting Warzone could be a sign of Crash 4 underperformance. According to SuperData (via GamingBolt), Crash Bandicoot 4: It’s About Time sold only 402,000 digital units within its first month on the market, which was noticeably lower than the performance of Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy, which sold 520,000 digital units in a single day.
This isn’t the first time Activision has shifted a studio into a support role. Following the launch of the Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 1+2 remake, its developer Vicarious Visions was moved to a support role by Activision. Vicarious Visions will no longer create original games going forward and will instead provide development help on Blizzard Entertainment titles. Fans worry this could be the fate of Toys for Bob, as well.
There has been no confirmation that Toys for Bob has been shifted to a support role only, but Digital Trends has reached out to Activision for comment. We will update this article with its reply.