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Less game EA cuts jobs at L.A. facility

Expansion plans still in works despite layoffs

HOLLYWOOD — EA is slimming down in Playa Vista.

Just a year and a half after opening a new facility in the West L.A. development and promising it would quickly grow to 1,000 employees, the vidgame giant has laid off 60 development staff.

Cuts were initiated by Neil Young, who became exec director of the facility in September after previously overseeing work on the publisher’s “Lord of the Rings” games and heading its Maxis studio in Northern California.

A spokesman said the cuts were made across the board and wouldn’t affect work on any specific project. Among the games recently developed at EA’s L.A. studio are “Lord of the Rings: The Battle for Middle-Earth” and James Bond actioner “GoldenEye: Rogue Agent.”

“This is part of Neil’s plan to realign the studio and keep it on track for long-term growth,” the spokesman said.

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After the cuts, studio dubbed EALA is down to 320 development employees plus 50 who work on marketing, music and mobile content.

Spokesman added EA still plans to fill the facility — built to attract Hollywood talent to join the vidgame industry — to its full 1,000-person capacity in the next several years.