Xbox ‘set up Halo for failure’ due to ‘incompetent leadership’ claim ex-employees
In the wake of mass layoffs at Microsoft there’s been criticism of Xbox management, with 343 Industries once again being the focus.
For the last several years Microsoft has been buying up developers big and small, but there’s been an increasing concern that their management of these various companies has been lacking. For example, multiple times they’ve had to bring in outside developers to help with games, most notably Crystal Dynamics on Perfect Dark and Eidos-Montréal on the new Fable.
Some insiders have suggested that Microsoft is overcompensating for being too hands-on in previous generations but the most high profile criticism of their management has now come from former 343 Industries employees dismayed at this week’s layoffs, which have seen 10,000 employees lose their job – including those at multiple Xbox studios.
343 Industries is in charge of the Halo franchise and has seen a revolving door of management exits in recent years, including studio head Bonnie Ross, director of engineering David Berger, multiplayer director Tom French, and, just this week, head of creative Joe Staten.
Those criticising 343 Industries’ management don’t name any names, so it’s not clear exactly what level of management they’re talking about, but their frustration is very obvious.
‘As a Halo fan I’m really tired of Microsoft business practices and policies slowly killing the thing I love,’ said former 343 employee Tyler Owens, who is now a build engineer on Respawn’s Apex Legends.
‘Between the contracting policies they abuse for tax incentives and layoffs in the face of gigantic profits/executive bonuses… they set Halo up for failure.’
‘The layoffs at 343 shouldn’t have happened and Halo Infinite should be in a better state,’ said eight-year veteran and former senior multiplayer designer Patrick Wren – who is also now at Respawn and working on Star Wars Jedi: Survivor.
‘The reason for both of those things is incompetent leadership up top during Halo Infinite development causing massive stress on those working hard to make Halo the best it can be.’
‘The people I worked every day with were passionate about Halo and wanted to make something great for the fans. They helped push for a better Halo and got laid off for it,’ he added.
‘Devs still there are working hard on that dream. Look at Forge. Be kind to them during this awful time.’
Although Halo Infinite was initially well received, despite an obviously rushed story campaign, enthusiasm for the multiplayer component quickly began to subside thanks to a lack of updates and what seemed, even from the outside, to be poor management.
Email [email protected], leave a comment below, and Twiter.com/GameCentral”>follow us on Twiter.
MORE : Xbox and Bethesda hit by Microsoft layoffs as Halo Infinite single-player team gutted
MORE : Halo Infinite finally gets co-op and Forge as Xbox admits to failures
MORE : Halo Infinite switching to Unreal Engine amid 343 shake-up claims insider
Follow Metro Gaming on Twiter.com/gamecentral”>Twiter and email us at [email protected]
To submit Inbox letters and Reader’s Features more easily, without the need to send an email, just use our Submit Stuff page here.
For more stories like this, check our Gaming page.