Activision to lay off 800 workers as video game sales drop

Video game maker Activision Blizzard is laying off nearly 800 workers as the company braces for a steep downturn in revenue following the best year in its history.

The cutbacks illustrate the boom-and-bust cycles in an industry whose fortunes are tied to video games that can have a relatively short lives before players move on to the next craze.

Right now, Epic Games' "Fortnite" is a hot fad that has been siphoning attention — and potential sales — from the titles made by other companies.

Although Activision also still owns popular games such as "Call of Duty" and "Candy Crush," it expects its revenue this year to fall by about 20 percent to $6.03 billion.

Activision will cope trimming 8 percent from its workforce of nearly 10,000 people and assigning more of its remaining employees to work on "Call of Duty," ''Candy Crush," and several other of its most popular titles.

The Santa Monica company had already reshuffled its leadership, even though it profits rose last year by more than five-fold to $1.8 billion. Revenue climbed 7 percent to $7.5 billion, the highest since Activision's inception 40 years ago.

Dawn Kamber