Video game companies can be ruthless when it comes to pink slips. There's been times when K has gone to work the day after a game launches, only to find the doors locked with everyone milling around in the parking lot. They're all told to go home for the day, and then HR proceeds to call them one by one to tell them whether they still have a job or not. Why the cruel and unusual treatment? Because they're afraid the newly-fired employees will make a scene or steal things or vandalize the place. So if you left anything important or personal at your desk, it's 50/50 whether the company will send it to you or just claim they didn't find anything. This is why K no longer brings any family pictures or old school collectibles from home to decorate his cubicle; there's no telling if it'll ever make it back.
This kind of cutthroat environment is one of the reasons why the general population of video game developers is disproportionately in their early 20's. (Quite the opposite of the engineering world where the median age is 40's.) People get scared off by this kind of lifestyle. If you've got a family to support, job insecurity like that is not going to cut it.
A few jobs ago, K's studio at the time was bought out by a major publisher, and 40% of the staff was let go. Afterward, the new company hired an outside consulting company to help the shell-shocked survivors expressing their feelings about the situation. Employees were asked to write poems or draw pictures that depicted their emotions and then share them with the room (I kid you not). When it was K's turn to take the mic, he basically went up and said (in much nicer words), "Buck up, you pansies. I've been through 12 layoffs on the past 14 years; survived 10, didn't for 2. That's almost 1 layoff per year. If you want to stay in this industry, this is the reality. So instead of moping around, help your friends who got laid off by sending their resumes to all your video game contacts. And get back to work, so our game will ship on time and the rest of the team won't get laid off as well." Afterward, his boss gave him a big bear hug and said "I hear ya, man."
So yeah, we'll see how long K will stick around in this very cool but very immature industry. He's currently with company #10 (can you believe it?), so let's hope the 10th time's a charm. ^_~