After today’s announcement that Microsoft will lay off 10,000 people, details on how internal restructuring will hit its gaming divisions continue to emerge, with Halo Infinite’s 343 Industries among the studios impacted.
According to Bloomberg, Joseph Staten, a Halo veteran who began his career with Bungie in 1998, will transition from his Halo Infinite creative director role and rejoin Xbox’s publishing division. Staten joined the team at 343 Industries in 2020 as the campaign project lead on Halo Infinite and later saw a title change to Head of Creative.
Bloomberg’s report includes an email from 343 Industries head Pierre Hintze, who explained the studio “made the difficult decision to restructure” and that support for Halo Infinite’s live service features will continue. Details on Staten’s new role and the exact degree of impact at 343 Industries remain unclear for now.
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Staten’s credits include a long history with the Halo series, starting with his role as the cinematic director on Combat Evolved, Halo 2, and Halo 3. His work on the Halo universe includes authoring some of its novelizations, and the studio lead also served as lead writer on Bungie’s sci-fi shooter, Destiny. He departed his role on the MMO and later rejoined Microsoft in 2014.
The Halo studio is among many impacted by Microsoft’s layoffs, including Gears of War studio, The Coalition, and the more recently acquired Bethesda. Microsoft’s blog notes that cuts impact 5% of its workforce. That’s in addition to the 1,000 employees let go in October 2022.
As cuts and restructuring extend into its game studios, Microsoft is still moving forward with acquisitions. A year ago today, the company announced it would buy Activision Blizzard for a record-breaking $68.7 billion. That deal later came under fire by regulatory bodies, like the US Federal Trade Commission, with investigations ongoing.
Andrea Shearon is a freelance contributor for IGN covering games and entertainment. She’s worn several hats over her seven-year career in the games industry, with bylines over at Fanbyte, USA Today’s FTW, TheGamer, VG247, and RPG Site. Find her on Twitter (@Maajora) or the Materia Possessions podcast chatting about FFXIV, RPGs, and any series involving giant robots.