'The Old Republic's Rich Vogel leaves BioWare, layoffs at BioWare Austin

SWTOR executive producer Rich Vogel has left Bioware amidst rumors of layoffs at the company's Austin branch.

Rich Vogel, executive producer for Star Wars: The Old Republic, is no longer with BioWare in the wake of layoffs at the company, reports Gamasutra.

Vogel, who has also held senior producer positions at Sony Online Entertainment and Origin, spent the past seven years with BioWare and oversaw production on SWTOR. BioWare recently stated the company is looking into making the game free-to-play, with the first fifteen levels making the jump just last week.

This afternoon EA confirmed the second round of layoffs at BioWare Austin as part of the company's restructuring plan. "As with the launch of any MMO, the size and skillset of the teams needed to maintain the game is different than the ones that built it," a BioWare representative said in an email statement. According to EA Vogel left the company in June, while staff members not laid off were relocated to EA Sports or other Austin-based projects.

"BioWare Austin is currently staffed to ensure the continued delivery of new, high quality game content for The Old Republic, and at a more frequent cadence," the statement said. "In the weeks ahead, we will announce plans for growing SWTOR with new content, new players and new ways to play."

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