The Secret World apparently didn't launch quite as well as Funcom had anticipated, with the studio suffering a severe dip in its stock value, and today announcing "temporary" layoffs will hit development staff.
Apparently, the eagerly-anticipated MMO wasn't quite anticipated enough, with the game failing to hit expected sales scenarios on launch.
As we announced in the stock notice that went out on August 10th, Funcom is in the process of reducing operational costs and this process includes temporary layoffs as well as other initiatives. As we are currently in the middle of this process we can not provide any further comment at the present time.
The cuts - a reported 50-60% of the studio's workforce - are considered part of a company-wide cost-cutting strategy. Funcom staff are refusing to confirm or deny figures, announcing instead that the studio is "in the middle of the process".
It's worth noting that, following the launch of Age of Conan, Funcom also applied significant staffing cuts, and then re-hired a lot of those employees when working on the game's expansion pack. Nothing has been revealed this time around as to if and when this new lot of employees will get their jobs back, but Funcom hopes to have more information very soon.
The Secret World continues, unaffected.