Recently, Sports Illustrated wrote that dozens of ZA/UM studio employees will soon lose their jobs. Now the dismissals have been confirmed by Argo Tuulik, the last screenwriter in the ZA/UM studio who worked on Disco Elysium.

Disco Elysium

In an interview with Sports Illustrated, Tuulik said that on February 15, studio employees actually received a letter from ZA/UM CEO Ilmar Kompus. The letter informed about the upcoming layoffs and the cancellation of the add-on for Disco Elysium, known by the code name X7. Two hours later, the studio executives decided to announce what was happening once again and held an unscheduled video conference. According to Tuulik, during the call, employees did not have the opportunity to ask top managers exciting questions - their microphones were turned off. Therefore, they could only listen to prepared speech.

After the meeting, the developers received another email. This time from the HR department. The letter stated that all employees would be awarded points based on "objective criteria" and through this they would determine who to fire. In total, according to Tuulik, ZA/UM intends to fire a third or slightly fewer people. Earlier, Sports Illustrated wrote that the layoffs would affect a quarter of the studio's staff, i.e., 24 people.

Tuulik stated that all X7 screenwriters have already been included in the list of dismissed. Including himself.

ZA/UM head writer Dora Klindžić told Sports Illustrated that over the past two months, X7 developers have been suffering from crunches, burnout and conflicts in the studio. Many of those who complained about what was happening ended up on the list of those being fired. She added that now some of the developers will be forced to leave the UK — after being fired, they will lose their immigration status.

"The mask has slipped off the face of capital. ZA/UM is a cold, indifferent company where managers wage war against their own creators, where art is second only to property and where corporate strategy is shaped by arrogant contempt for their own audience," Klindich said.

A source:

Sports Illustrated