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Michael Abrash leaves Valve to join Oculus VR as Chief Scientist

Virtual reality evangelist Michael Abrash announced today that he has left Valve to join up with Oculus VR as Chief Scientist and “see how far we can take it.” …


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Uncharted director Richmond leaves Naughty Dog for Riot Games

Naughty Dog’s Justin Richmond, who served as game director on both Uncharted 3 and the studio’s upcoming PlayStation 4 game Uncharted 4, has announced that he has left the company to join up with Riot Games. …


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Square Enix marketing VP Karl Stewart leaves company

Former Square Enix vice-president of marketing Karl Stewart announced his departure from the company after eight years of service, and he’ll begin a new job at the Burbank-based Petrol Advertising agency in April. Stewart worked in recent years at…
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[Update] God Of War III Director Leaves Sony Santa Monica

Update: Sony has offered a very brief, but clear statement on Stig Asmussen's status with Sony Santa Monica.

A representative from Sony offered the following statement confirming Asmussen's departure from Sony Santa Monica saying, "SCEA can confirm that Stig Asmussen is no longer with Santa Monica Studio."

 

Original story:

Stig Asmussen, a developer with Sony Santa Monica and the God of War series, and director on God of War III (and star of this commercial), has reportedly left the studio.

IGN received confirmation from anonymous sources that Asmussen recently left. Asmussen was not involved with the recent God of War: Ascension, and was apparently working on an internal project unrelated to the God of War franchise.

For our review of God of War III, head here. We've reached out to Sony for confirmation of Asmussen's departure and will update our story when and if we receive a statement.

[Source: IGN]

 

Our Take
If these reports are true, then it adds to a a list that is grown oddly large this week of known developers leaving their studios. Konami's Koji Igarashi, Sucker Punch's Jaime Griesemer, and Microsoft's Marc Whitten (who is admittedly not a developer, but rather was involved in the industry as an executive), all left their studios and companies recently. The video game industry is changing at a surprising pace.

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Xbox leader Marc Whitten leaves Microsoft

Xbox Chief Product Officer Marc Whitten has left Microsoft for a job as Chief Product Officer of Sonos, a home audio company.

Whitten had been with Microsoft since 2000 and helped launch the original Xbox, Xbox 360 and Xbox One. In the announcement…
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Longtime Castlevania producer Koji Igarashi leaves Konami

Koji Igarashi, longtime producer of the Castlevania series, announced his departure from Konami over the weekend. Igarashi’s last day at the publisher was March 15, and marked the end of a career at Konami that spanned over 20 years.

“I’ve decided…
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Report: Risen 3: Titan Lords leaves the sea in favor of medieval fantasy [Update]

Furthering the gaming industry’s ongoing fascination with the word “titan” comes Risen 3: Titan Lords, a newly-revealed entry in developer Piranha Bytes’ cult-favorite dark fantasy roleplaying franchise.

German magazine PC Games has revealed the…
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Head Of Xbox European Division Leaves Post

Microsoft VP Chris Lewis, who has been with the company for 25 years, is leaving his post.

Lewis led Microsoft's European division, and helped guide the Xbox 360 to large-scale success in the territory, particularly the UK. He also managed the recent launch of the Xbox One.

Microsoft's marketing group head Yusuf Mehdi said of Lewis: "He has been a distinguished leader for our Xbox team in Europe – overseeing the launch of the original Xbox, Xbox 360, Kinect and most recently Xbox One, and growing the business significantly across the region. Following that success, Chris has now chosen to retire from Microsoft and focus on his other business and personal interests. We wish Chris nothing but the best, and we thank him for everything he's contributed to Xbox and Microsoft as a whole over the past 25 years."

Source: MCV UK

Our Take:
Yet another round of Microsoft leadership shakeups. Throughout the company, there has been a massive shift in the executives, including the Xbox division. Let's hope this doesn't affect the continuity of its video game business in Europe.

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Former Steam Head Jason Holtman Leaves Microsoft

Jason Holtman was the head of Valve's PC game distribution platform, Steam, but he left last February and later accepted a position with Microsoft. A little over six months after accepting the job with Microsoft, Holtman has left the company.

We reached out to Microsoft for confirmation after there was a change in Holtman's LinkedIn profile and it offered the following statement: "We can confirm that Jason has left Microsoft and we're grateful for his time at the company. We wish him the best in his future endeavors."

Holtman worked with Valve and the Steam platform for eight years before leaving last year. His previous position involved fostering relationships with the developers who produced content for Steam. At Microsoft he was head of of PC gaming and entertainment strategy.

[Source: LinkedIn, via Neowin, Joystiq]

 

Our Take
Holtman's departure seems like a big loss for Microsoft. Details about his departure remain mysterious. I imagine working for Valve – a company with no corporate structure – to Microsoft – one that likely has a strict corporate structure – must have been a difficult transition, but it's unclear if that played any role in his departure.

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Chris Remo leaves Double Fine to join startup dev Campo Santo

The Cave co-writer Chris Remo is no longer working at Double Fine, having teamed up with Idle Thumbs co-stars and Walking Dead designers Jake Rodkin and Sean Vanaman at the recently formed Campo Santo studio. Remo was formerly editor-in-chief at…
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